Roadside Sign Rules

Please be sure to follow all the guidelines for placing signs in Fairfax County:

The Right Place for Signs

  • On private property with permission of the owners.

The Wrong Place for Signs

  • ILLEGAL IF PLACED IN THE ROAD RIGHT-OF-WAY INCLUDING ON THE MEDIAN OF ANY ROAD, STREET, OR HIGHWAY.
  • ILLEGAL IF PLACED ON UTILITY POLES, TREES OR TRAFFIC SIGNS, HIGHWAY MARKER OR HYDRANTS.

Types of Signs:

Real Estate and Yard Sales

  • No sign shall exceed 3 sq. feet in area and 4 feet in height.
  • If multiple signs are erected, they must be 500 feet apart with a total of no more than 5 posted signs per property.
  • Yard sale signs shall not be posted for more than 2 weekends or legal holidays in any one calendar year.

Signs Announcing a Drive or Event

  • No sign shall exceed 16 sq. feet in area and 6 feet in height. No closer than 5 feet to a road right-of-way line.
  • Limited to civic, philanthropic, educational, historical or religious organizations (Example: registration drive for youth sports, cheer-leading, etc.)
  • Posted for a period not to exceed 14 days.

Signs Denoting Religious, Charitable, Fraternal, Military, or Service Organizations

  • No sign shall exceed 8 sq. feet in area and 6 feet in height.
  • No more than 2 signs per organization.
  • Recommendation: Use permanent material such as wood, metal, or other heavy-duty weather durable materials.
    Note: off-site signs advertising a private business, service, or other concern are not permitted. These include but are not limited to signs advertising painting, gutter cleaning, house cleaning, etc.

Political Signs

  • No sign shall exceed 32 sq. feet in area and 8 feet in height.
  • Sign permit required with a $5.00 fee, and a $100.00 bond posted with Zoning Administration to ensure removal of signs within 15 days after nomination, election, or referendum.
  • Sign permit number assigned to the applicant shall be placed in the lower right corner of each sign.
  • Nothing in this provision shall be construed to authorize the posting of political signs on trees, utility poles, lights, or in any place or manner prohibited by the provisions of Article 12 of the Zoning Ordinance.
  • This information is obtained from Article 12 of the Fairfax County Zoning Ordinance.

Questions about the legality of various types of signs should be directed to the Zoning Enforcement Branch at 703/324-1300.