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Commercial Code Enforcement

New ordinances have been passed that impact Vacant Buildings, Abandoned Property in Pre-Foreclosure, and occupancies with a high fire risk such as places of assembly and hazardous materials that require a Fire Prevention Permit. Click on the respective link to learn more.

New Regulations for Junk Collecting vehicles and operators. Learn the requirements to collect junk, what forms must be filed and what limits to the operation of collecting junk. Special notices if operating out of your home. See in the Brochure section, Requirements for Junk Collectors

In the Forms Section under Public Information, check out the Home Occupation Licence Application (DNS-164) and if the building is leased or rented you will need the Owner's Consent Form, also in the FORMS section of the DNS Public Information page.

The Commercial enforcement Section is responsible for enforcing the building codes as they apply to all commercial businesses. Existing buildings are inspected for compliance with fire codes and building safety codes.

One of the primary functions are annual fire inspections. Many owners can avoid violations by learning what are the most commonly cited violations. For a free copy of the Common Fire Code Violations, click below.


The following penalties apply for violations. There isn't a set amount for a single fire code violation. Under penalties or failure to comply (200-19), violations that are cited on a notice from our department an owner may be subjected to prosecution and to daily penalties of $150 to $10,000 in the manner provided in Section 200-19.

The owners are also subject to reinspection fees in accordance with Section 200-33-48, of City Code of Ordinances a fee may be charged for any reinspection, except no fee shall be charged for the final reinspection when compliance is recorded. The fee is $60.89 for the first reinspection, $75 for the second, $150 for the third, and $300 for the fourth and all subsequent reinspection.

Reinspection fees shall be a lien upon the real estate where the reinspection were made and shall be assessed and collected as a special tax.

Milwaukee Sign Ordinance

The City of Milwaukee has enacted a sign ordinance. The changes are significant and mostly impact business and commercial establishments that advertise on their buildings. Review the new law, find out how many, how large and where signs can go. The following brochure will cover most instances. If you have a specific question or want to ask "what if" question, call the Development Center for a free answer. (414) 286-8211. Click here for Milwaukee's Sign Ordinance!


Supervisor - Jumanne Cheatham Send a message to ->

Supervisor - Michael Mannan Send a message to->

Division Manager - Ronald Roberts Send a message to->

Seasonal Heating Problems? Here is a chart of the minimum heating requirements for every commercial occupancy. Once there, use the FIND feature of your browser to go directly to your type of building, i.e., school, office, garage.

Minimum Heating Requirements  

Smoke Alarm and Fire Alarm Testing Requirements sheet. PDF



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Carbon Monoxide Brochure DNS-139

Use this brochure to determine where to place carbon monoxide alarms in one - and two-family homes, as well as multi-unit buildings that contain fuel-burning appliances.

Commercial Fire Code Brochure DNS-149

This brochure contains information on fire codes as they apply to commercial buildings. Review it to make sure you have the proper alarm systems and permits in place to conduct business safely.

Storefront Sign Regulations

This brochure contains information about placement and limitations of signage around places of business. Use this brochure before installing a sign to determine if a permit is necessary or if there are other limitations.

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Commercial Enforcement
841 N Broadway
First Floor
Milwaukee, WI 53202


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