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Do You Need a Permit For a Gravel Driveway?

Do You Need a Permit For a Gravel Driveway?

Having a durable driveway that can be walked on by foot or driven on by a vehicle is always the desire of every homeowner. And one of the durable driveways that last for long and can withstand any condition or climate is the gravel driveway.

But before finalizing installing the gravel driveway, there are some things you will want to put into consideration before embarking on it.

And one major thing is to seek and get the right information as to whether a permit will be needed for a gravel driveway or not. In this article, we will be considering that for everyone thinking of having a gravel driveway with other information that will be of great value.

Do I Need a Permit to Put Gravel Driveway?

One of the first things that a visitor will pay attention to is the driveway. Many homeowners often overlook this area of home construction which is crucial. For those who see it as an important part of their home construction, the material used for the driveway has a lot to do with its durability and function.

In going for a gravel driveway, factors such as cost, soil type, climate, usage, and the need for a permit are always considered.

For driveway construction, gravel is much common compared to other surface materials in the US and is used in many applications. When it comes to maintenance, it is very easy to maintain and comes in different colors.

The installation of a gravel driveway is easy and takes less time to settle for usage. Not only that, it is more affordable in terms of the amount needed to get it fully done.

Considering all the positive sides and needs for using gravel for the driveway, the next thing is whether a permit will be required before installing the gravel driveway. A permit is required for no other reason but to avoid violating the pre-existing construction laws of the state or county.

To ensure safety for everyone, get a driveway permit if there is one for the construction type. The permit will guide in having the right sight distance, accurate width, the appropriate form of grading and surfacing for that location, and lastly, for adherence to the conditions of vehicles emergency access.

For gravel driveway, if you are grading an existing access route or just putting gravel, a permit is not required as long as you are not making changes to grade, drainage, or the driveway width.

Get a permit if you are upgrading the driveway to asphalt or concrete. If the driveway is located in a significant place and you want to make a gravel driveway, you will require a permit to install it.

How Much Should a Gravel Driveway Cost?

A gravel driveway is the least costly of all the forms of surface that can be used for grading the driveway. However, when talking about the overall or average cost of it, some factors influence the price in which you can get the gravel driveway done, and they are;

Your location: One of the crucial aspects of the gravel driveway construction dictates the cost of getting the construction done. If you are looking at getting the gravel driveway done in a large metropolitan, the cost that will be covered will be more than that of someone who is getting it done in a small town or rural area.

Another factor that influences the cost of the gravel driveway has a pre-existing driveway if the gravel will be installed in an existing driveway or removed before having the gravel driveway.

Land clearing and site preparation also impact the amount that the gravel driveway will cost. If you have a new driveway that will require clearing and site preparation, this will add up to the cost.

The width and the length that the gravel driveway will cover also have their place in the average amount spent on the construction.

The amount and type of material to be used is also a determining factor in the gravel driveway cost. Some contractors will calculate materials based on square footage. A single-car driveway or long winding driveway will cost differently. The thickness of the gravel will be considered as well.

Other things that are always looked into for the construction cost of the gravel driveway are the type of gravel, geotextile fabrics, plastic grid, drainage installation, and other things.

With the factors mentioned that dictate the gravel driveway will cost, there is an average estimate that the cost will likely fall into. The average cost of installing the gravel driveway is around $1.50 per square foot and includes a 4-inch layer of crushed rock or gravel.

To have 500 and 750 square foot gravel constructed, homeowners can spend $740 and $1,110, respectively. Although this cost is not fixed, you may spend less or more than the mentioned average price.

How Much Does a Driveway Permit Cost?

Knowing the actual cost of a driveway permit has to do with the type of driveway permit that a homeowner wants to acquire. The government agency for each state or province that will issue the driveway permit also determines the amount to be paid to get the permit.

That notwithstanding, to get a driveway permit, you can be targeting between $50 and $600. Other things that contribute to the cost of the driveway permit are the survey, engineering, and traffic study cost.

A geotechnical study and project-specific pavement design may be needed where there are turn lanes, which comes with an extra cost. But no matter how it is, the cost of a driveway permit for residential houses is always lesser than commercial ones.

How Many Inches Deep Should a Gravel Driveway Be?

While installing the gravel driveway, know that different layers are involved in it. And for it to be durable and retain its shape, the required depth should be used. The first gravel for the driveway should have the first layer in baseball-size stones and be 4 inches deep.

Other layers after this should have a thickness of 4 inches and gravel pieces smaller than the layer below it. The final layer should be crushed gravel for a depth of about 12 inches.

Can You Get a Permit After Work is Done?

Before any construction works commence, it is expected that the contractor handling the project gets all the necessary permits. However, there are some instances whereby the permit is not gotten before the work is done. After the work has been completed, the permit can still be pulled for.

Seeking a permit after the work is done always costs more than getting it before commencing. And the extra charges that come on it are for a fine which may double what would have been the actual cost of the permit.

Seeking a permit after work is done will no longer be by the contractor again; the homeowner will have to get it done.

To get the permit after the work has been done, you will need to contact your local building and planning commission to explain why you couldn’t get the permit before the work was carried out for you to get it after the completed work.

Do I Need a Permit to Repave or Create a New Driveway?

When you want to repave or create a new driveway, depending on where it will be done, a permit may or may not be needed for it. For instance, if you are repaving or creating a new driveway on a town street, a permit must be gotten.

But if you are repaving the portion of the driveway on a private property which does not affect the town’s right-of-way, you may not require a permit to get it done. If you are also creating a new driveway work on a private street or right-of-way, a permit is not also required for this.

What Can a Homeowner do Without a Permit?

In getting some renovation done in the building, the homeowner does not need to get a permit for all the work done. There are some indoor work that permits are not required. To have wallpaper hung or do indoor painting, you do not need a permit for this.

To install carpets and flooring, install countertops, permits are also not needed. If you want to install panels and trims such as baseboards or crown modeling, make minor electrical repairs, or do plumbing works, permits are not needed to be gotten for all this type of remodeling or renovations.


For some crucial aspects of installing a gravel driveway, a permit is always needed for all safety. It is always good to get the permit before constructing the gravel driveway than after it has been done to avoid paying extra charges. As the homeowner, ask your constructor if the cost for the permit has been included in his list or not for you to be sure.