Outside the House

Minimum required:


  • GFCI protected outlets.
    • One on or by the front of the house. One on or by the back of the house.
  • Outlets on a deck.
    • Any porch, balcony or deck of 20 square feet or more is required to have a GFCI protected outlet.


  • Outside lights.
    • There must be an outside light by every man-door entrance/exit to the house. The light must be controlled by a switch close to the door. The garage door is not considered an entrance/exit, and does not require any lights.

In my example:

  • Garage lights.
    • While not required on the front of a garage door, most people like to have these.
  • Heat pump.
    • If you are using a heat pump, or air conditioning unit, don't forget about the circuit for it!
  • Outlet by Heat pump.
    • If you have a heat pump or a/c unit, you need a GFCI protected outlet within 25 feet of it.

Common Options

  • More outlets.
    • Add as many as you'd like, just make sure they are all GFCI protected.
  • More lights.
    • It's up to you.
  • Outlets in the eave for Christmas lights.
    • These also must be GFCI protected. Most people give them a dedicated circuit and put them on a switch somewhere convenient.