Shed Permits in Idaho: A Complete Guide

When you buy a shed, the last thing you want to think about is shed permits. The world of shed permits in Idaho can be complicated and confusing. It can be hard to find the information you’re looking for and when you do, it can be hard to find the rules for your specific situation. 

As Idaho’s premier shed builder, we understand the frustrations facing you in this process. That’s why we’ve written an article all about shed permits in Idaho. Here’s what you’ll find in this article:

  • Answers to common questions about shed permits
  • Shed permit regulations for specific cities in Idaho
  • Other common shed regulations in Idaho
shed permits in Idaho 1 e1710362606156

What is a Shed Permit?

A shed permit is basically permission from your local township, city, or county to erect or place a shed on your property. Whether it’s a large commercial structure or a larger shed, you’ll need this permit to stay in compliance in many cases. Think of it like a building permit, but tailored specifically for sheds, although some localities have no specific building permits for sheds. 

Do I need a permit for a shed in Idaho?

In the state of Idaho, most areas only require a shed permit if the structure measures over 200 square feet or is more than 1 story. However, there are often additional permitting regulations for specific situations, like adding wiring or plumbing to your shed.

Even if your shed measures under 200 square feet, it’s still best to check with your local government for specific regulations. This way, you’ll know if any special rules apply to your situation.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is shed-in-Idaho-1400x933.jpg

Common Regulations for Sheds in Idaho

As mentioned above, most localities do not require a permit for a shed that’s 1 story and 200 square feet or less. Anything larger than 200 square feet will most likely need a permit. However, some HOAs have height and size restrictions on accessory buildings like sheds. 

While you may not need to get a shed permit for a shed under 200 square feet, there are other rules that may apply. For instance, most accessory buildings cannot be placed in a front or side yard.

There may also be utility easements that apply to your property. If there are buried electrical lines or sewage tanks, you’ll likely need to place your shed at least 5’ from these.

Properly line setbacks also may apply to your shed placement. This means that you will need to stay a certain distance from property lines, depending on your location. These restrictions will vary between specific locations and HOAs. 

As tiny homes become more and more popular, it’s common to see people converting sheds into liveable tiny houses. These converted sheds are usually subject to a different set of regulations and codes, such as the Tiny House regulations for Bosie, ID

An additional permit may be required for your shed if you add plumbing or electrical wiring. For example, some counties and cities require a permit if you add plumbing to your shed, even if it’s smaller than 200 square feet. 

lofted barn in idaho

What’s the biggest size shed I can build without a permit in Idaho? 

Most places in Idaho allow you to build a shed up to 200 square feet without a permit, as long as it’s only 1 story high. 

How do I get a shed permit in Idaho?

To get shed permits in Idaho, you’ll want to visit your local government’s website and download a shed permit application, or visit your local government office in person and fill out an application there. After you’ve applied for your permit, you may need to have your property inspected.

Below is a list of the websites of the most populous counties in Idaho. On these websites, you’ll be able to find shed permit information for those specific areas. If there are any questions you have about your specific situation, it’s best to reach out to your local government office. 

quaker shed in Idaho

Most Populous Counties in ID

Ada County
Canyon County
Kootenai County
Bonneville County
Twin Falls County
Bannock County
Madison County
Bingham County
Bonner County
Nez Perce County

How long does it take to get Shed Permits in Idaho?

Getting shed permits in Idaho can be a process that takes anywhere from a few days to several weeks. Usually, your permit will be processed within 2 weeks, but it can take longer depending on holidays and how busy the government office is at the time. 

shed with porch in Idaho

How much do shed permits in Idaho cost?

While the cost of a permit varies by location, it often depends on the value of the shed itself. For instance, the city of Boise charges  $70.76 for the first $2,000.00 plus $12.71 for each additional $1,000.00 up to $25,000. 

Do I need a shed permit in Boise, Idaho

The city of Boise only requires a shed permit if your shed is larger than 200 square feet. For more information, check out the website for the city of Boise

storage shed with porch in Idaho scaled

Do I need a shed permit in Meridian, Idaho

In Meridian, Idaho, shed permits are only required for sheds larger than 200 square feet. Here’s a link to the website of Meridian, Idaho for more information.

Do I need a shed permit in Nampa, Idaho

If a shed is 200 square feet or smaller, you will not need a permit, unless the shed is in a flood plain or is wired for electricity. For more information check out Nampa’s website.

shed interior in Idaho

Do I need a shed permit in Idaho Falls, Idaho 

Most accessory buildings, including sheds, do not need a permit if they measure 200 square feet or under. For more information on these regulations, check out the website for Idaho Falls, Idaho. 

What is the penalty for not getting a shed permit in Idaho?

The penalty for not getting a shed permit in Idaho varies by location. Building a shed without the required permits will be seen as a violation of the building codes and/or zoning regulations. Here are some of the penalties you may incur if you are found in violation:

  • Fines: If you don’t obtain the needed permits, you likely will be fined. The amount of the fine can vary based on the severity of the violation and the local regulations.
  • Stop-Work Order: If you are constructing or placing a shed without a permit, it’s possible your will be issued a stop work order. This keep you from work on your shed until you get the necessary permit. 
  • Insurance Issues: If your shed isn’t in compliance with the local regulations, your insurance company may deny any claims on the shed, making you responsible for any damage or liabilities.
shed permits in Idaho e1710362622695

Other FAQs

In most areas of Idaho, yes, you can. However, if you convert a shed into a living space like a tiny home, you will be subject to regulations around tiny homes in your area. For reference, here’s an article covering the subject of tiny home regulations in Idaho

In many areas, you should not place a shed closer than 7’ from a side property line fence or 10’ from a rear property line fence, although these regulations often vary by location. 

Often, a building permit will become invalid after 180 days from the date the permit was issued, if work has not started on the project. This also may vary by location. 

cabin shed in idaho


As much as shed permits in Idaho may not be a topic you like to think about, we hope this article brings you clarity on the subject and answers any questions you may have. If you still have questions, or are interested in purchasing a shed of your own, feel free to contact us!