The act of painting house numbers or addresses on curbs is regulated in most communities by local government, or in some cases, community associations. The rules and regulations depend on the ownership of the curb. Curbs can be owned privately in the case of some home developments, but are most often owned and maintained by city or county public works departments.
The purpose in almost any community for allowing the painting of house numbers on curbs is to enable emergency responders to look to a common place, away from the physical structure of the home, to identify an address. House numbers appropriately painted and maintained on curbs allows firefighters, police and emergency medical crews to find the target address while still in their vehicles.
Before you begin painting any curb, find out who owns it. If the owner of the curb is the city or the county, you are likely to need a permit. Inquire what rules and regulations are in place for allowing house numbers to be painted. Rules, regulations and permits vary widely throughout the country. The City of Los Angeles, for example, requires curb painters to be insured, bonded and permitted by the city.
In Anne Arundel County, Maryland, communities that allow curb painting often employ local volunteer fire departments and non-profit community service organizations to do so by invitation. Once the curb painting event date has been set and approved, home owners who want their addresses painted fill out a request form and provide a donation to the agency responsible for the painting.
Painting house numbers on curbs is illegal in some areas of the country. If you have done your homework to find yourself legally able to paint your house number on the curb, paint a number using a stencil, large font and a paint color that can be easily read from a moving vehicle at the farthest side of your street. Clean the curb prior to painting and use exterior paint suited for the surface.