As with everything, it all depends. There are all kinds of rules, regulations, and guidelines when it comes to signage. Most sign rules are the local codes that apply to businesses advertising their offerings. They are designed to keep things looking orderly and head off the visual chaos that would result if every business was allowed to put whatever size signs they wanted wherever they wanted it. Osceola County’s outdoor advertising ordinances are a good example of local government’s approach to business signage.
Of course, a drive down Colonial Drive demonstrates that less-established entrepreneurs don’t really care what county officials think about their advertising methods. Utility poles and bridges advertise everything from satellite internet sales to mattress wholesalers and credit card repair services. They are called Bandit Signs – and there’s little authorities can do about their proliferation. There are just too many of them, and they are deployed too relentlessly for overwhelmed code enforcement officials to effectively deal with them.
Real Estate Signs
People who sell housing, on the other hand, have more decorum and civic pride. Perhaps because they are more accountable, Realtor Signs proliferate under strict guidelines. Realtors
follow the rules – and there are plenty of them. The Orlando Real Estate Association warns its members that “Ordinances are different for each municipality and continually changing,” and advises Realtors to visit www.municode.com/ for the latest information to stay compliant when planting those Open House signs along the road.
Political Candidate Signs
Perhaps aiming to keep the peace, The Villages brushes aside First Amendment concerns with an ordinance prohibiting political yard signs. Most other jurisdictions are more freewheeling and seek to regulate signage. Marion County, for example, has a comprehensive list of Sign Placement Guidelines on the books. Most of these have to do with not obstructing the vision of people operating motor vehicles.
An important thing to remember about yard signs during the emotionally-charged campaign season is that it’s illegal to vandalize political signs. Aside from the legal ramifications, messing with a yard sign from an opposing campaign can lead to unpleasant physical confrontations.
Social issues can also cause problems. The President of the Robinswood Community Improvement Association in Pine Hills recently came across a homemade sign offering to adopt the baby of anyone who may not be enthusiastic about impending parenthood.
Everyday Yard Signs
For most do-it-yourself signage it’s pretty much the wild west because law enforcement generally has bigger fish to fry than whether your homemade Garage Sale advertising campaign is up to code. Nonetheless, it’s wise to check with local authorities if you are planning any controversial or large-scale media blitz.