Understanding the Pool Permit Process in Johnston County, NC

a woman wearing a hat and leaning on a pool edge.

Key Takeaways

  • Johnston County requires permits for all in-ground pools.

  • Essential documents include a property survey, septic permit, and plot plan.

  • Safety regulations mandate specific barrier and gate requirements.

  • Permit fees and inspections are part of the process.

Are you dreaming of summer days lounging by your very own pool but feeling overwhelmed by the thought of navigating permits and regulations?

Wondering what it really takes to turn your backyard into a personal oasis?

Dive into our latest blog post to uncover the essentials of the pool permit process in Johnston County, NC.

We promise not only to demystify the process but also to equip you with the knowledge to make your vinyl liner pool installation as smooth as possible, ensuring you’re one step closer to making those lazy, poolside afternoons a reality.


Steps in the Pool Permit Process

Most pool companies take care of getting the permits for you; however, if this is the case, you will need to be involved in gathering some information for the builder.

At Prestige Pools of N.C., we will take the lead in acquiring the permits based on the information we receive from you.

To help you along in the process, in this article, we cover what is required for a pool permit so that you can understand the reason each piece of information is important.


The basic steps in the process of obtaining permits are:

  • Check with your HOA, if applicable, for rules and the municipality for local ordinances.

  • Collect the relevant information, survey, and plot plan.

  • Submit the completed permit application at the appropriate office

  • Pay the fees for getting the permit.

  • Wait for the permit to be issued.

  • Build the pool, fence along with decking, and any electrical installations


Do You Need a Pool Permit in Johnston County, NC?

Yes, anyone planning to install an in-ground pool in Johnston County must obtain a permit, adhere to safety regulations, and undergo inspections to ensure compliance.


How Long Does It Take to Get a Pool Permit?

It takes about two and a half weeks after a complete permit application has been submitted to get the Site Plan and Construction Plan approval.


Why You Need a Pool Permit

Before you break ground on your new backyard oasis, understanding the “why” behind the need for a pool permit in Johnston County is crucial.

This isn’t just about following the rules; it’s about ensuring your dream pool is safe, secure, and doesn’t negatively impact your property or your neighbors’.

Failing to obtain the required permits can lead to significant consequences, including fines, mandatory removal of the pool, or complications when trying to sell your property.

Moreover, working within the permit guidelines ensures that your pool does not interfere with public sewer easements or private drainage easements, which could lead to costly legal disputes or damage.

  • Avoiding Penalties: Ensuring you have all required permits before construction begins saves you from potential fines and legal issues.

  • Insurance Implications: Many insurance companies require proof of permits for coverage in case of pool-related accidents.

  • Resale Value: A properly permitted pool can increase your home’s value and attractiveness to future buyers.


What Are the Rules and Regulations?

You have to adhere to local rules and regulations when you build a swimming pool.

Here are some of the things you should look into before building a new pool.


Talk to Your Homeowner’s Association (HOA)

If you have an HOA, you already know how important it is that you adhere to the rules they have set in place for your residence, making it crucial to check with them in the beginning.

Some HOAs don’t allow backyard pools, while others do.

Many HOAs will need you to submit the plans for approval before beginning construction.

Talk to your representative before beginning the building process in order to determine what you can and can’t do.


Check Ordinances

Local ordinances may vary from one municipality to another.

Pools, decks, pool equipment, and fences may not be installed over or in a public sewer easement or a public or private drainage easement.

You will need to get approval from the local water department for the location of a pool if a public sewer or public or private drainage easement exists on your property.

Local ordinances may require quiet pool pumps that operate under a maximum allowed noise level.

Others may have “setback” requirements that outline the minimum distance to build from buildings.

If your property is in a Historic District or your home is designated as a Historic Landmark, there may be ordinances that determine historic district requirements.


Find Out About Safety Measures

Some municipalities mandate rules that make swimming pools safer.

For example, some require a barrier of a certain height, which varies around the entire pool.

Some have rules that allow for certain-sized objects to pass through any openings in the barrier.

Others require gates to open in certain directions and locks to be placed at the entrances to the pool.


Research Local Permits

Your municipality will require some type of permit in order for you to build an in-ground vinyl liner swimming pool.

Residential swimming pools are regulated by state (North Carolina), county (Johnston), and municipality (the city, town, or district where you live).

Permits and inspections are required for anything that holds more than 24 inches of water, including in-ground pools, above-ground pools, spas, and hot tubs.

Don’t neglect to apply for the appropriate permits before beginning the building process.

Follow the link to discover how long it will take to install an in-ground pool.

As noted above, it typically takes several weeks to obtain the permits you need.

Talk to your local city or town to find out which types of permits you need.

They may have a pool packet that has all of the required documents for new pool construction, including the permit fee and the building requirements.


What Permits May Be Required?

Swimming pools require 1) building, 2) electrical, and possibly 3) gas permits.



For building a pool, the minimum necessary is for the construction of the pool and the barrier that surrounds the pool area.

This is just a basic building permit.



Your vinyl liner in-ground pool will require electricity to function correctly.

The filtration system needs electricity to keep the pool safe and clean.

Most towns and counties require that electrical work be done by a master electrician who is licensed within city or county limits in accordance with the National Electrical Code.

Many times, the contractor that you hire to build your pool will include the electrical installation by a licensed electrician who will take care of obtaining the appropriate permit.



If you want a gas heater, you will also need a separate air pressure gauge to verify the pressure.

Most gas tests must utilize a diaphragm gauge, which an inspector must test and verify.

Depending on whether or not you already have a gas line run to your house, it’s possible that the contractor you hire for the project will get the permits and inspection for the pool installation.


What Permit Fees Will You Need to Pay?

Understanding the fee structure is crucial for budgeting your pool project.

Per the Johnston County Building Inspections Department, these are the fees you will need to pay:

  • Zoning Permit Fee ($12.50): This fee covers the cost of the zoning permit.

  • Building Permit Fee ($100): This fee covers the cost of the building permit, which is required for the construction of the pool and any associated structures.

  • Electrical Permit Fee ($60.00): If your pool design includes lighting, a pump, or any other electrical components, an electrical permit—and its associated fee—will be necessary. All electrical work must be performed or supervised by a licensed electrician to ensure safety and compliance with county regulations.

Securing a pool permit in Johnston County is an essential step in bringing your dream pool to life.


What You Need for the Permit Application

Most inground swimming pool contractors will submit all of the required documents to apply for your permit, but you will need to supply them with current and complete documentation.

For example, here is the pool data sheet that must be completed and submitted in Johnston County.


Current Survey of Your Property

You need a current survey of your property that includes all of the existing structures, concrete surfaces, sheds, distances to property lines, etc.

One reason this information is required is to calculate impervious surface limits for your property.

Typically, your builder will provide you with a final survey with your home’s closing documents.

Otherwise, you’ll need to obtain a survey from a licensed survey company.


Current Septic Permit

Knowing where your septic system is located is one of the most important considerations due to a 15′ required setback from all septic system components, including the repair area, to the water’s edge.

You’ll need to provide a current septic permit with a drawing that includes all of your septic system components (tank, lines, repair area, etc.) and distances from the property lines and buildings.

You can typically find these documents with the closing documents for your home, or you can contact your town or county for the septic permit.


Plot Plan

You will need to include your plot plan when you apply for a permit.

This plan is a detailed diagram of what your property will look like with the pool.

It should contain pool measurements and the location of the pool, decking, landscaping, etc.


Bonus: Wake County Pool Permit Links

Embarking on your pool installation journey in Wake County?

Here are some invaluable links to guide you through the permit process, ensuring you have all the resources at your fingertips for a seamless experience.


Dive Into Your Dream Pool with Prestige Pools of NC

Navigating the permit process and ensuring your pool meets all Johnston County regulations can seem overwhelming.

This guide has equipped you with the knowledge to embark on your pool installation journey with confidence.

Prestige Pools of NC specializes in vinyl liner pool installations, ensuring your project not only meets all local requirements but also exceeds your expectations.

Our team of experts is well-versed in the intricacies of Johnston County’s regulations, making us your ideal partner for a hassle-free pool installation experience.

By choosing Prestige Pools of NC, you’re not just getting a pool; you’re getting peace of mind and the assurance of quality craftsmanship.

Ready to take the plunge into your dream pool?

Fill out our contact form today, or give us a call at 919-586-8556