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Residential Code Enforcement 


The residential section inspects all residential properties including 1 and 2 family homes, condos and apartments. It enforces the Milwaukee Code of Ordinances on these properties as well as local, state and national fire codes on apartments. It responds to complaints, makes annual fire inspections on apartment buildings and provides support for neighborhood organizations. The companion section to the Residential Section is the Commercial Section which handles commercial buildings.

Complaints About a Building

The Department of Neighborhood Services takes in an average of one complaint every hour, 24 hours a day. Handling that volume requires some very specific information from the person making the complaint. See the Complaint Process for more information on how to make a complaint and what is involved. 

Neighborhood Guidelines

There are Neighborhood Guidelines to help introduce a common set of goals and standards to help newcomers become part of the block and to keep absentee landlords informed about who else lives in the neighborhood. These have been developed and effectively used by the Sherman Park Community Association.

Neighborhood Housing Survey

One of the most effective tools for stabilizing property values is to do a Neighborhood Housing Survey. This preemptive strike sends a warning to neighbors whose property begins to show signs of deterioration. It informs owners of their need to make repairs before a formal and binding complaint is made to the Department of Neighborhood Services.

Nuisance Control

Our webpage about Nuisance Control provides detailed information for controlling Garbage and Nuisance Vehicles.

Graffiti Removal

Our webpage about Graffiti Removal Techniques shows step-by-step how to determine the best way to remove the problem. 

Landlord Training

The award winning landlord training program operates out of DNS's downtown office. The goal is to teach landlords fundamental ways to keep illegal activity out of their property. The classes are FREE and held on a regular basis through out the year at various locations. They are held on evenings and weekends to accommodate virtually anyone's schedule.

Minimum Heating Requirements

Click the link above for seasonal heating requirements. 

Vacant Building Code

Effective January 1, 2010, the City’s new Vacant Building Registration (VBR) ordinance Chapter 200-33-64 of the Milwaukee Code of Ordinances (MCO) takes effect.  The new VBR ordinance requires owner(s) of residential and commercial property left vacant for 30 days or more to register the property with the Department of Neighborhood Services (DNS) and take steps toward assuring the property is secure, properly maintained and not creating a hazard for the surrounding community.

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Contact Us

Anderson Lake Tower
4001 S. 6th Street
Milwaukee, WI 53221

(414) 286-2268