You need a permit to install, alter, or repair any permanent sign that is visible from the public right-of-way. Electrical signs must be installed by a licensed and bonded electrical contractor, unless installed by the business owner. You also need a permit to install or alter an awning, including covering of existing awning with new fabric.
You need an electrical permit for electric signs. If your sign extends over any public place, you also need a street use permit which is issued by the Seattle Department of Transportation. You must get your street use permit before applying for your sign permit. You may also need a business license if you are working in Seattle, even if your office is outside the city.
We have a basic fee for signs up to 100 square feet, plus an additional amount for each square foot over that size. Our awning fees are based on the value of the awning.
You can apply at the Applicant Services Center. You don't need an appointment and the wait time is generally less than 20 minutes. You can also mail or fax in your application; we give walk-ins priority, however. Our review time for a sign permit depends on how complex your project is and the quality and completeness of your original application.
If your sign will be located in a historic or special review district, or on the same lot as a landmark structure, you need a certificate of approval from the Department of Neighborhoods. You need this approval before you apply for your permit.
If your sign is in a shoreline district, you must comply with the Shoreline Master Program rules.
You will need:
Include your payment information as specified on our permit application form.