Government Affairs

Resources & Ordinances

  • Real Estate Sign Restrictions
  • Business Taxes & Permits
  • Water Retrofit Requirements
  • Flood Plain & Earthquake Maps
Real Estate Sign Restrictions The following is a brief outline of local sign ordinances applicable to temporary real estate signs in residentially zoned areas in various jurisdictions in San Diego County. The information reflects the most commonly asked questions and is in no way meant to replace the actual sign ordinances. You are encouraged to contact the local jurisdiction with additional questions or for any points of clarification. Pages last updated: Summer, 2007.
Disclaimer *Public Right-of-Way: That portion of a property deeded to the City for streets, curbs, sidewalks, and other public improvements. For the purposes of sign regulations, the Public Right-of-Way includes curbs, sidewalks, and the small areas between curbs and sidewalks. If you are unsure, please call the number provided. **Disclaimer- The information provided is updated to the best of our ability using written and verbal information provided by the jurisdiction. If you are unsure or unclear on a rule, please call the number provided for further assistance.
Carlsbad More Info: (760) 602-2703
On-Premise For Sale Signs1 sign (4 square feet maximum), No lights, banners or pennants, 5 Feet above average grade, remove 15 days after sale.Off-Premise Directional SignsOff-site signs, not a public right-of-way (within 10 feet of the curb), must have property owner's permission.
Chula Vista More Info: (619) 691-5280
On-Premise: 1 sign (3 square feet maximum), No lights, banners or pennants, remove 15 days after sale.Off-site signs, not allowed in public right-of-way (within 10 feet of the curb), must have property owner's permission. Open house 5 signs max during daylight hours on private property with permission of property owner. Any signs in public right away have been deemed trespassing and will be confiscated and trashed. Fines are issued for any signs in public right-of-way.
Coronado (619) 522-7320
On-Premise maximum: 6 square feet / 4 feet tall. Not allowed in public right-of-way. Removal 15 days after close of escrow. No banners or flags with exception of nonprofit and nonpolitical banners.Off-Premise Directional Signs: All off-premise signs must have approval of the property owner and no signs are allowed in the public right-of-way.
County (Unincorporated) (858) 565-5981
On-Premise: Maximum height of 12 feet. In residential zones, the signs are limited to 4 square feet in area and a maximum height of 6 feet. No more than one on a parcel and no allowance for long frontages. 32 square feet in commercial and industrial zones and up to 64 square feet if the frontage is greater than 500 feet in length.Off-Premise: No more than 1 on each parcel with the permission of the property owner, or 2 on a corner lot, not allowed in the public right-of-way, no larger than 4 square feet, daylight hours only.
Del Mar (858) 794-4610
On-Premise: 5.5 square feet displayed for each individual unit in a Residential Zone, and a maximum of 6 sq ft in a Commercial Zone, must be out of public right-of-way, and in place for 60 days or less. An additional 3 sq ft will be allowed for "open house" signs placed upon the private property, during "open house" hours only. Balloons are considered signs.Off-Premise: Must have property owner's permission, 8-12 feet off of the curb, San Diego areas: Del Mar Heights/Highlands.
El Cajon (619) 441-1716
On-Premise: 1 sign per street frontage (12 sq ft max, 32 sq ft in commercial). No flags, banners or balloons.Off-Premise: 4 sq ft maximum, not on public right-of-way with exception of political signs. Limit of 6 off-site signs per property advertised, limit 2 per property. There is a mandatory Temporary Sub-division Sign Application, which must be completed within a reasonable time prior to posting and requires a $190 bond be posted for each sign.
Encinitas (760) 633- 2600
On-Premise For Sale Signs: 2 signs (3 square feet maximum), unlit. Flags and banners allowed during daylight hours if securely fastened.Off-Premise Directional Signs: 3 sign limit. Daylight hours only. Not on public right-of-way, must have property owner's permission. Flags and banners allowed during daylight hours if securely fastened.
Escondido (760) 839-4671
On-Premise:1 unlit sign per frontage (not to exceed 2 signs) 4 sq ft maximum. May have up to 2 riders but must not exceed 5 sq ft including riders. Must be removed within 15 days after close of escrow.Off-Premise Directional Signs: Up to 3 off-site Open House signs, not to exceed 4 sq ft in area and 5 sq ft in height. May attach up to 3 balloons. Must be out of public right-of-way, and the property owner's permission is required.
Imperial Beach (619) 628-1356
On-Premise For Sale Signs: 1 sign per frontage, 8 square feet for lots up to 9,999 square feet. Permit required with a $10 filing fees. Flags permitted, but no pennants or banners.Off-Premise Directional Signs: One-on-One basis with confirm from the city. Contact the Community Development Department at the number above.
La Mesa (619) 463-6611
On-Premise For Sale Signs Residential: 1 sign per street frontage, no lights (4 sq ft maximum and 5 ft tall maximum). Removal 15 days after close of escrow.Off-Premise Directional Signs: 4 sq ft maximum. Only on open house days. Not in public right-of-way.
Lemon Grove (619) 825-3800
On-Premise For Sale Signs: One sign maximum 6 sq ft (Commercial/Industrial zones: two signs, maximum 16 sq ft.)Off-Premise Directional Signs: Maximum of one sign per intersection along most direct route to development. Maximum sign are 9 sq ft, maximum sign height 5 ft. Permit required prior to installation of signs.
Oceanside (760) 966-4770
On-Premise For Sale Signs: 2 signs (maximum: 6 sq ft and 5 ft tall).Off-Premise Directional Signs: 1 sign (4 sq ft maximum), only allowed from 6 p.m. Friday to 6 p.m. Sunday.
Poway (858) 668-4600
On-Premise For Sale Signs: 1 unlit sign per frontage (4 square feet maximum and 5 ft in height, 32 sq ft and 8 ft in height maximum in commercial), removal 15 days after close of escrow. Signs on rear street frontages are prohibited.Off-Premise Directional Signs: 4 sq ft maximum and 5 ft in height.
San Diego (619) 446-5000
On-Premise For Sale Signs1 sign per frontage (4 sq ft maximum), no flags or banners. 5"x7" in La Jolla, 9"x12" in Rancho Bernardo, (PDO Regs). Must have firm name. Removal 15 days after close of escrow.Off-Premise Directional Signs: 4 sq ft maximum. Daylight hours only. Not on public right-of-way including street medians, sidewalks & grass strip at curb. No flags, banners or pennants.City of San Diego Sign Regulations
San Marcos (760) 744-1050 ext. 3204
On-Premise For Sale Signs: 1 sign per frontage (6 sq ft maximum), 5 ft height limit, removal 15 days after close of escrow. Not in public right-of-way or on public property.Off-Premise Directional Signs: Allowed if confirmed by city (not in public right-of-way), permitted by Kiosk Directional Signs displayed by the city. May contain the development name.
Santee (619) 258-4100
On-Premise For Sale Signs: 1 unlit sign per frontage (4 sq ft maximum and 5 ft height maximum). No flags or banners. No permits required. Removal 15 days after close of escrow.Off-Premise Directional Signs: 4sq. ft maximum and 5 ft height maximum. Not on public right-of-way. Not on vacant lots advertising other property.
Solana Beach (858) 481-2633
On-Premise For Sale Signs: 1 unlit sign (6 sq ft maximum and 5 ft tall maximum), 1 open house sign, single small flag/pennant per sign.Off-Premise Directional Signs: 1 (6 sq ft sign and 5 ft tall maximum) per lot with owner's approval. Not on public right-of-way. Single small flag/pennant per sign.
Vista (760) 639-6100
On-Premise For Sale Signs: 1 sign per frontage (6 sq ft maximum and 8 feet tall maximum), 6 square feet extra per acre allowed on lots. Signs must not exceed 96 sq ft. Removal 15 days after close of escrow.Off-Premise Directional Signs Not permitted
Business Taxes & Permits The following is a brief outline of local sign ordinances applicable to temporary real estate signs in residentially zoned areas in various jurisdictions in San Diego County. The information reflects the most commonly asked questions and is in no way meant to replace the actual sign ordinances. You are encouraged to contact the local jurisdiction with additional questions or for any points of clarification. Pages last updated: Summer, 2007.
Carlsbad More Info: (760) 602-2495
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - employees, customers, signs, garage conversions.Cost - Included in Gross Receipts Tax.

Business TaxesGross Receipts - Minimum $25 + $5 per employee(760) 602-2495
Chula Vista More Info: (619) 691-5272
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - signs, employees, customers, case-by-case approval.Cost - $25 one time fee.

Business TaxesFive or fewer employees - $25 for first yearSix or more employees - $52.50 + $6.50 per employee.(619) 691-5272
Coronado (619) 522-7320
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - signs, use of accessory structures, customers, can't impact residential parking, must be owner-occupant.Cost - $15 annual fee.

Business TaxesGross Receipts - $25 up to $15,000; $50 - $50,000; $87 - over $50,000
County (Unincorporated) No business license required in unincorporated area of county.
Del Mar (619) 755-9313
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - employees, customers, signs, garage conversionsCost - Included in Gross Receipts Tax.

Business TaxesGross Receipts - $30 up to $15,000 (Call for other rate brackets.)(619) 755-9354
El Cajon (619) 441-1741
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNot permitted for Real Estate Business/Brokers (*change is pending)

Business TaxesFlat - $40 and $3 per employee(619) 441-1721
Encinitas (760) 633-2600
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - full-time employees, signs, parking impacts, deliveriesGarage may be used.Cost - included in Business Tax

Business TaxesFlat - $25 first year and $15 thereafter(760) 633-2606
Escondido (760) 839-4880
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - customers, employees, signs, advertising w/ business addressCost - Included in Business Tax

Business TaxesBase of $35 - then escalates according to gross receipts(760) 839-4659
Imperial Beach (619) 423-8301
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - signs, parking impacts, garage. No more than 2 employees.Cost - Included in Business Tax

Business TaxesFlat - $53 yr. (Prorated) + $6 pe, + $105 for person with certificate.(619) 628-1365
La Mesa (619) 463-6611
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - employees, customers, materials, storage, signsCost - Included in Business Tax

Business TaxesFlat - $35(619) 667-1114
Lemon Grove (619) 825-3805
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - employees, signs, parking impacts, storage, no more than 6 customers per day Cost - Included in Business Taxes

Business TaxesFlat - Broker $30 (processing fee) + $15Salesperson $30 + $10 (processing fee)(619) 825-3800
National City (619) 336-4200
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - employees, signs, sales, material storageCost - $100; $50 (one time fee) + $50 licensing

Business TaxesGross Receipts - $50 - first year, following years based on gross receipts.(619) 336-4261 or 4264
Oceanside (760) 966-4845
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - employees, customers, signs, garage conversions.Cost - $50 per year + $0.50 per $1000 income

Business TaxesFlat - $75 commercialGross Receipts - $0.50 per $1000)(760) 435-3878
Poway (858) 748-6600
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - employees, customers, signs, materials/storage, garage use, parking impactsCost - $25 (one time fee)

Business TaxesBusiness Certificate - $8 every two (2) years.(858) 679-4217
San Diego (619) 236-6490
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - signs, parking impacts. May have 1 employee. Use converted garage.Cost - Included in Business Tax

Business TaxesFlat - $34 + $5 per employee - 12 or fewer employees.$125 +$5 per employee (13+ employees).
San Marcos (760) 744-1050
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - employees, customers, signs, parking impactsCost - Included in Business Tax

Business TaxesFlat - $20 (up to 5 employees), $30 (6-10 employees), $80(31-50) or call (760) 744-1050, ext. 3101 for additional fee schedules.
Santee (619) 258-4100
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - employees, customers, signs, parking impacts, garage use, materials/goodsCost - Included in Business Tax

Business TaxesFlat - $25 (prorated)(619) 258-4100 ext. 144
Solana Beach (858) 720-2400
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - customers (but may have one client, if providing a service, present), signs, parking impacts. May have one employee.Cost - Included in Business Tax

Business TaxesFlat - $40
Vista (760) 726-1340
Home Occupation Permit RestrictionsNo - employees, customers, signs, parking impactsCost - Included in Business Tax

Business TaxesNo - employees, customers, signs, parking impactsCost - Included in Business Tax
Water Retrofit Requirements Most cities, and the County of San Diego, have adopted various forms of water retrofit requirements mandating the installation of ultra-low flow (ULF) water fixtures, including toilets, showerheads and faucet aerators. The following is an overview of the ULF fixture requirements for each municipality in San Diego County
Carlsbad Municipal Water District (760) 438-2722 Requirements - No ULF retrofit requirements
Chula Vista Building & Housing Department (619) 691-5007 Requirements - ULF for bathroom additions or remodels
Coronado Community Development (619) 522-7326 Requirements - ULF for bathroom/kitchen remodel and upon replacement of fixtures
County (Unincorporated) Planning & Land Use Department (619) 565-5920 Requirements - ULF for remodels, room additions and upon installation or replacement of fixtures if comparable model is available
Del Mar Finance Department (858) 755-9354 Contact San Diego Water Authority 1-800-986-4538 Requirements - No ULF Requirements
El Cajon Building Department (619) 441-1726 Requirements - No ULF Requirements
Encinitas Building Department (760) 633-2730 Requirements - No ULF requirements
Escondido Utilities Administration (760) 839-4647 Requirements - ULF for bathroom remodels, bathroom additions and remodeling base upon value. Ordinance requiring removal of self-generating water softeners under appeal.
Imperial Beach Building Department (619) 628-1356 Requirements - ULF for bathroom remodels, bathroom additions, and upon replacement of existing fixtures
La Mesa Building Inspection & Permits (619) 667-1176 Helix Water District (619) 466-0585 Requirements - ULF for remodels, bathroom additions, and upon replacement of existing fixture
Lemon Grove Building Department (619) 825-3805 Call between 8:00-9:30a.m. or 3:30-5:00p.m. Requirements - No ULF retrofit requirements.
National City Sweetwater Authority (619) 420-1413 Requirements - No ULF Requirements.
Oceanside Water Utilities (760) 966-4850 or (760) 966-7860 Requirements - No ULF requirements.
Poway Building Services (858) 679-4288 Requirements - ULF required for remodel or replacement of existing fixtures.
San Diego Building Inspection Department (619) 570-1030 Requirements - ULF for all resales, bathroom remodels, and upon replacement for all fixtures. 3.5 or less before Jan.1, 1992 is acceptable. Water Conservation Hotline (619) 515-3500 Water Conservation Certificate San Diego Municipal Code Section 147.04 - Plumbing Retrofit Upon Change of Property Ownership.
San Marcos Building Division (760) 744-1050, ext. 3241 Requirements - ULF for bathroom remodel and bathroom additions
Santee Building Division (619) 258-4100 ext. 170 Requirements - ULF for remodels, room additions, and upon replacement of existing fixtures (reviewed on a case-by-case basis due to drainage problems)
Solana Beach Building Department (760) 633-2730 Requirements - ULF for bathroom additions and only when relocating or adding more than one toilet
Vista Building Department (760) 639-6100 Requirements - ULF bathroom additions
Flood Plain & Earthquake Maps The following is a brief outline for locating Flood Plain and Earthquake maps throughout the County of San Diego. This information is provided for reference only. SDAR advises you to contact each City/County directly to verify this information. (Revised 7/01/00)
Carlsbad 1635 Verde Ave. Dept: Planning (760) 602-2700 Hours: 7:30-5:30 M-Th, 8-5 F Info needed: Address Flood Plain Maps: Maps are available through the Planning Department.Earthquake Maps: Countywide and City geotechnical studies and maps available for reference and free of charge. Contact County of San Diego for more information.
Chula Vista 276 4th Ave. Dept: Engineering (619) 691-5021 Hours: 8-5 M-F Info needed: Address and parcel number Flood Plain Maps: City of Chula Vista will provide information by telephone. If copies of maps are needed, it must be done by a blueprint company. Earthquake Maps: Contact County of San Diego for maps and information. charge. Contact County of San Diego for more information.
Coronado 1825 Strand Way Dept: Community Development (619) 522-7326 Hours: 8-5 M-F Info needed: Address Flood Plain Maps: Contact FEMA for maps and information. Have information and maps available for reference for city of Coronado only. Earthquake Maps: Contact County of San Diego for maps and information
County (Unincorporated) 5201 Suite D Ruffin Rd. Dept: Public Works (858) 694-3267 Hours: 8-4 M, T, W, F, 8-7 TH Info needed: Address and parcel number Flood Plain Maps: Flood plain and FEMA maps are available at the mapping division by mail or in person. Call for a fee schedule.Earthquake Maps: Faults/Epicenter maps are available from the Public Works Dept. Call 694-3285 or the planning counter at 694-3253 for information and fees.Web Site: www.sangis.org
Del Mar 1050 Camino Del Mar Dept: Planning (858) 755-9337 Hours: 8-5 M-F, Center Hours: 1-5 Info needed: Address and parcel number Flood Plain Maps: Maps provided free of charge at the Planning Department counter. Earthquake Maps: Contact County of San Diego for maps and information. Website: www.delmar.ca.us
El Cajon 200 East Main Street Dept: Planning (619) 441-1742 Hours: 8-5 M-F Info needed: Address Flood Plain Maps: Planning Department will answer phone inquires but does not provide maps. For maps and other information contact FEMA. Earthquake Maps: Contact County of San Diego for maps and information
Encinitas 505 South Vulcan Ave. Dept: Engineering (760) 633-2710 Hours: 8-5 M-F Info needed: Address or parcel number Flood Plain Maps: Engineering Department will answer phone inquires but does not provide maps. For maps and other information contact FEMA. Earthquake Maps: Contact County of San Diego for maps and information
Escondido 201 North Broadway Dept: Engineering (760) 839-4671 Hours: 7:30-5:30, Closed alternate Fridays Info needed: Address and parcel number Flood Plain Maps: Contact FEMA for maps and information Earthquake Maps: Contact County of San Diego for maps and information
Imperial Beach 825 Imperial Beach Blvd. Dept: Public Works (619) 423-8311 Hours: 8-12, 1-5 M-F Info needed: Address Flood Plain Maps: Planning Department will provide FEMA maps at no charge. Earthquake Maps: Contact County of San Diego for maps and information
La Mesa 8130 Allison Ave. Dept: Community Development (619) 667-1177 Hours: 7:30-5:30 M-F, Closed alternate Fridays Info needed: Address Flood Plain Maps: Community Development Department will answer phone inquiries but does not provide maps. For maps and other information contact FEMA. Earthquake Maps: Contact La Mesa Fire Chief for info and maps, (619) 667-1471.
Lemon Grove 3232 Main Street Dept: Public Works (619) 825-3810 Hours: 8-5:30 M-F Info needed: Address and parcel number Flood Plain Maps: Public Works Department will answer phone inquiries and provide maps. For more information contact FEMA. Earthquake Maps: Contact County of San Diego for maps and information
National City 1243 National City Blvd. Dept: Engineering (619) 336-4310 Hours: 8-5 M-F Info needed: Address Flood Plain Maps: Engineering Department will provide information by telephone as well as providing copies in the office. Earthquake Maps: Contact County of San Diego for maps and information
Oceanside 300 North Coast Highway Dept: Engineering (760) 435-3520 Hours: 8-4:30 M-F Info needed: Address, parcel number, cross street Flood Plain Maps: Engineering Department will answer phone inquires but does not provide maps. For maps and other information contact FEMA. Earthquake Maps: Contact County of San Diego for maps and information