Frequently Asked Questions
Overview | Common Violations
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FAQ's | Rat Information
It seems like the Code Enforcement Officers target my block.
Why are they harassing us? Why do they have to drive around anyway?
What do they do?
Code Enforcement is an important part of maintaining property
values. Keeping properties safe, sanitary, and well maintained
allows everyone to enjoy your neighborhood. It may seem like the
Officers are on your block frequently, however, this is part of
their normal route. They drive the City’s streets and notify
property owners of any violations. This proactive approach has kept
property values higher in Ferndale that in some surrounding
How come it looks like nothing is done about my complaint?
Often code enforcement action isn’t visible. If a ticket is
written, it has to proceed through the court system before any
action is taken. This can take many weeks or even months. You can
call Code Enforcement and request an update on the complaint.
Are Code Enforcement Officers allowed to trespass on private
Inspectors can walk on public areas of a property – the driveway,
sidewalk, service walk, front porch – without permission. They
sometimes get permission from neighbors to view an adjacent yard if
there are suspected violations.
What should I do about rats?
Refer to the handout on the webpage.
Do I need a permit for a residential fence?
No, please refer to the Zoning Ordinance for regulations
regarding the construction of fences. Contact the Community and
Economic Development Department at (248)546-2366 if you have any
What else do I need a permit for?
Refer to the Community Development page for detailed information,
fees, and permit applications. If you have a question or are
unsure about a permit or inspection, call (248)546-2367. You
must have a permit before starting work. A double fee is assessed if
work is started without a permit.
Is my neighbor allowed to park his car in his driveway for 2
Non-commercial vehicles can be parked as long as they remain
licensed and operable.
Am I allowed to keep my camper at my house?
A camper, or any recreational vehicle, must comply with the
In all Residential Districts, a recreational vehicle (boat, ATV,
jet ski, snow mobile, etc) may be parked or stored subject to the
- No recreational vehicle parked or stored on single-family
residential property shall exceed thirty (30) feet in length or
ten (10) feet in width.
- Recreational vehicles, other than motor homes, may be parked
or stored within the side or rear yard, but no closer than three
(3) feet from any side or rear lot line.
- Recreational vehicles must be parked or stored on a
hard-surface consisting of asphalt, concrete or other material
approved by the Building Inspector.
- No recreational vehicle shall have fixed connections to
electricity, water, gas or sanitary sewer facilities. Temporary
connections for recharging batteries and filling water tanks
shall be permitted.
- All recreational vehicles must be kept in good repair and
carry a current license and registration.
- No recreational vehicle shall be parked on a public street,
alley, or right-of-way, except as required for loading and
unloading purposes for no more than twenty-four (24) hours.
- Outdoor parking or storage of no more than two (2)
recreational vehicles, other than motor homes, is permitted on a
single or two-family residential lot. No recreational vehicle
may be parked or stored outdoors in the R-3 and R-4 Districts.
- Motor homes may be parked on a single or two family lot for
a maximum of two (2) weeks in any six (6) month period. During
that period only, a motor or mobile home may be occupied and
temporarily connected to electricity.
Can I put my garbage cans on the side of my house between
Garbage cans must be placed at the rear of each building or
structure at a place that is reasonably inconspicuous and away from
places occupied by other persons and from streets.
I’m going on vacation. Can I put my garbage cans out early?
For weekly collection, garbage cans shall not be placed prior to
4:00pm of the day preceding the scheduled collection day or on
Sunday or on a holiday prior to 9:00pm.
Tall grass, weeds, trees in neighbors’ yards
The house next door has really tall grass and weeds. What can
Grass must be kept mowed 7" or less. If it is not, a Notice of
Violation may be sent. NOTE: the City is not required to personally
notify you of the violation. If your grass isn’t mowed within 5
days, the City’s contractor will mow it; the charge is at least
My neighbor’s tree hangs over my yard. What can I do?
The City does not get involved with neighbor disputes about trees
on private property. You may trim the branches that hang over your
property; however you may be liable if the tree dies as a result of
your trimming. The owner can be held liable in civil court if the
tree causes any damage on your property. Other than foliage that
obstructs a sidewalk or visually obstructs an intersection, there is
no requirement to trim vegetation.
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The City of Ferndale, Michigan
300 East Nine Mile Road
Ferndale, Michigan 48220
City Hall Hours:
Monday - Thursday 8:00am - 5:30pm
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