Common Codes

This page provides explanations of the most common codes and ordinance violations that affect our quality of life in Lago Vista's diverse neighborhoods. We encourage neighborhood associations and groups to use this to help your neighborhoods work together to make Lago Vista a safer, healthier, and cleaner place to live and work.

Abandoned & Junk Vehicles

An abandoned vehicle is one that is inoperable, more than five years old, and has been left unattended on public or private property in excess of 48 hours.

A junk vehicle is one that is inoperable and has an expired license plate or vehicle safety inspection certificate or that is wrecked, dismantled, partially dismantled or discarded; or remains inoperable for a continuous period of more than 30 days on private property and 72 consecutive hours if on public property.

Building Permits

Any owner or authorized agent who intends to put up a fence, construct, enlarge, alter, repair, move, demolish, or change the occupancy of a building or structure, or to erect, install, enlarge, alter, repair, remove, convert or replace any electrical, gas, mechanical or plumbing system, the installation of which is regulated by this code, or to cause any such work to be done, shall first make application to the Development Services office and obtain the required permit.

Trash & Recycling Cans

Trash and recycle carts must be placed:

  • A minimum of 3 feet apart.
  • No more than 3 feet from the curbside or right-of-way adjacent to the residential unit.
  • A minimum of 5 feet away from cars, mailboxes, or other impediments.
  • With wheels facing AWAY from the street.
  • No later than 7 am on your scheduled collection day. (Note: Trash and recycling are collected by different trucks and will not be picked up at the same time.)

Carts should be removed:

  • From the street and stored in a place as far as possible and not seen from the street.
  • Within (12) hours after trash pick-up.

Up to three additional bags will be picked up in addition to any trash and /or recycling bins. Bags may not exceed 35 pounds.

Trash cart placement

Floodplain Development Permit

Any development planned on a property identified as being in a FEMA-designated special flood hazard area requires a floodplain development permit to be reviewed and approved prior to any work commencing. Development is defined as any manmade change in improved and unimproved real estate including, but not limited to, buildings or other structures, mining, dredging, filling, grading, paving, excavation or drilling operations. Illegal Dumping

It shall be unlawful for any person to sweep, haul, throw or deposit any garbage, handbills, trash, concrete, rocks, brick, plaster, tile, stagnant water, dead animals, building waste, or rubble into, upon or along any drain, gutter, alley, sidewalk, parkway, street, in the window, on the door handle, or under the windshield wiper of an automobile, or vacant lot or upon any public or private premises within the corporate limits of the city.

Parking in Yards

All vehicles, including but not limited to recreational vehicles, boats, trailers, commercial vehicles, and trailers, that are not involved in permitted or authorized construction or development activity parked in front of the building setback line or in front of the rear yard in the side setback shall be on a concrete or asphalt driveway or parking apron, or an improved surface capable of supporting the vehicle such as concrete, asphalt, pavers or similar material. Parking on concrete blocks is not an approved method.

Weeds & Tall Grass Dead Trees

It is unlawful for any owner, occupant, lessee, or renter of any lot or parcel of ground within the city limits to fail to maintain such property free and clear from weeds, tall grass, and piles of tree trimmings, from the line of such property, including the sidewalks, to the established curb line of the adjacent property. Weeds and or grass of a height exceeding 12 inches is declared to be a public nuisance.

Debris: Property Maintenance

It shall be unlawful for an owner, occupant, lessee, or renter of any lot or parcel of ground within the city limits to fail to maintain such property free of accumulations of brush, construction materials, garbage, junk, refuse, rubbish, solid waste, trash, weeds, unwholesome matters and any other objectionable, unsightly or unsanitary matter of whatsoever nature.

Open storage detracts from the neighborhood and lowers property values. Please store your extra items in the garage or in a permitted accessory building or in a fenced backyard.


No person may erect, re-erect, construct, affix, change copy, alter or relocate any sign unless a sign permit has first been obtained.

Exemptions include:

  • Garage/moving signs not posted for more than three days
  • Political signs 30 days ahead and removed within 72 hours after an election
  • Real Estate signs on the lot that are for sale
  • Flags or emblems displayed on private property of governments or political, civic, philanthropic, educational, or religious organizations

Accessory Buildings

A permit is required to install an accessory building of any size.

There are two types of accessory buildings:

  • Under 120 square feet - Permit fee: $35
    • Two of these buildings are allowed.
    • The building must be no taller than nine feet measured from the ground to the ridge of the roof and no taller than six feet from the ground to the eaves.
  • Over 120 square feet - Permit fee: $125 plus 20 cents per square foot.
    • Must be built to look like the home and with 25% of the building being masonry.
    • Roof pitch must be the same as the home.
    • Full set of plans are required

Lot Clearing

Lot clearing is not allowed without a permit due to problems with erosion control. Tree trimming and cleaning of weeds, etc. from a vacant lot is allowed. We do have a Tree Preservation Ordinance so please check with us PRIOR to removing any trees from your lot.