When did Farmington Hills become a City?
Farmington Hills became a City on July 1, 1973.
What form of government does Farmington Hills have?
Farmington Hills operates under the Council-Manager form of government, the most successful and fastest-growing form of government in U.S. municipalities today. The Mayor and six Council members are elected by the community and concentrate on policy issues that are responsive to citizens’ needs and wishes. The City Manager is appointed by Council to carry out policy and ensure that the entire community is being served.
When does City Council meet?
Meetings are generally held on the 2nd and 4th Mondays of each month at Farmington Hills City Hall, 31555 W. Eleven Mile, just west of Orchard Lake Road. Meetings begin at 7:30 PM Meetings are also broadcast live on cable Channel 8.1. Be sure to check with the City Clerk at (248) 871-2410 to confirm a meeting date and time.
Can I attend a City Council meeting?
Yes. Members of the public are welcome to attend all City Council meetings. The City Council generally meets the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Monday of the month. Meetings begin at 7:30 PM and are held in Council Chambers at City Hall (called the Floyd A. Cairns Municipal Building), 31555 W. Eleven Mile at the corner of Orchard Lake Road.
How do I get on the agenda for a City Council meeting?
If you would like to be on the City Council agenda, please put your request in writing to: Mayor and Council, 31555 W. Eleven Mile, Farmington Hills, MI 48336. Include as much detail as possible about the issue you want to address before Council.
You can also come to a meeting and talk to the Mayor & Council during the "Public Questions & Comments" portion of the meeting. Your presentation during this time is limited to 5 minutes. Persons representing a group (such as a neighborhood association) are limited to 10 minutes.
How do I contact the Mayor or a City Council member?
The Mayor and City Council are part-time positions so they do not keep regular hours at City Hall. However, they welcome your questions and comments. You can write to them at City Hall, 31555 W. Eleven Mile, Farmington Hills, MI 48336. View names, phone numbers and/or email addresses for the Mayor and City Council members.
Does the Mayor perform marriages?
Yes. If you are interested in having the Mayor officiate your marriage, contact the City Manager’s Office at (248) 871-2500. The Mayor usually officiates weddings Monday through Friday between the hours of 9:00 AM and 4:00 PM. Please have a couple of dates in mind before you call. The fee is $175.
Once the wedding date is set, you will need to go to Oakland County to obtain a marriage license (you can also apply online at www.co.oakland.mi.us). For more information, call the Oakland County Clerk’s Office at (248) 858-0571.
Do the Mayor and City Council work for the City full-time?
No. All are part-time positions. The City Manager, who is responsible for implementing policies established by the City Council, is a full-time position.
Where is the City Clerk’s Office?
The City Clerk’s Office is located in the lobby of City Hall (called the Floyd A. Cairns Municipal Building), 31555 W. Eleven Mile at the southwest corner of Orchard Lake Road. Office hours are 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM Monday through Friday. The phone number is (248) 871-2410.
Do I need a permit for a garage sale?
No, but the City does have some restrictions on garage sale signs. For details, call the Zoning Department at (248) 871-2520.
Do I need a permit for a backyard party or a block party?
No. Please note that the City does not allow any street closings for neighborhood parties unless it is a dead-end or cul-de-sac and a signature is provided from all residents affected by the street closing. Contact the City’s Clerk’s Office at (248) 871-2410 for more information.
Where do I get a birth or death certificate?
The City Clerk’s Office can provide certified copies of birth/death certificates for all births that occurred after July 1973 at Botsford Hospital or home births within the City of Farmington Hills, and for any deaths that occurred in the City of Farmington Hills after July, 1973. For any births/deaths prior to July, 1973, copies may be obtained at either Oakland County at (248) 858-0571 or the State of Michigan at (517) 335-8666. You can apply for a birth/death certificate using an online application. Visit the City Clerk's section for details.
Where do I apply for a passport?
You can apply for a passport at the Finance Department at 11 Mile and Orchard Lake Road and we will forward your application to the federal government’s passport agency. If you want to renew your passport or change the name on your passport, you can obtain the forms at the Finance Department and send them in yourself. Be sure to bring all the proper documentation when you apply. Click here for passport details.
How do I register to vote?
You may register to vote at any Secretary of State’s Office or by contacting your County Clerk or City Clerk’s Office. For details on what you need to register to vote, visit the City Clerk's section.
I would like to speak with the City Manager. Do I need an appointment?
The City Manager has an open-door policy regarding citizens. No appointment is necessary. It is best, however, to call and schedule an appointment at (248) 871-2500 so you can be sure the City Manager will be there when you visit.
Where is the closest city water/sewer to my property?
Call Engineering at (248) 871-2560 or come to the Engineering Division at City Hall where maps are available for viewing.
How much will it cost to connect into city water?
Call the Oakland County Water Department at (248) 858-1110 for connection fees.
Call the Farmington Hills Building Division at (248) 871-2450 for additional charges.
How do I get my street paved/repaved?
Notify the Farmington Hills Division of Public Works for an evaluation.
Circulate a petition (available on-line or at the Engineering Division at City Hall) to arrange an informational meeting.
Do I need a permit to pave/repave a driveway?
Yes, if the portion you are working on is touching a public street. (Please refer to the “Roadway Jurisdiction Map” to determine if you will need a City Permit or a County Permit.)
Why are there flags on my front lawn?
Flags are set by various utility companies in order to identify underground utilities prior to construction activities in the area. Contact the Engineering Division at City Hall at (248) 871-2560 and someone will investigate to find out what work is proposed.
How do I find out if a property is in a floodplain?
We have floodplain maps available at the Engineering Division at City Hall for the public to view, or you can click here to view the maps on the Oakland County website.
Is there wetland on my property?
Call the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) at (586) 753-3700.
How do we go about enclosing the ditch in front of our house?
Ditch enclosures are the property owner’s responsibility. Call or come into the Engineering Division at City Hall to discuss the proposed work and we will inspect and advise you of the proper permits required.
What can be done about the standing water in my ditch?
Call the Farmington Hills Division of Public Works (DPW). They will send someone to investigate and make a recommendation.
What can I do when water ponds in my yard after it rains?
Call the Engineering Division and we will send out someone to investigate and make a recommendation.
What can I do about my neighbor’s sump pump discharging onto my property?
Call the Engineering Division at (248) 871-2560 and we will send out someone to investigate and make a recommendation.
Where are you located?
City Hall is on the southwest corner of Orchard Lake Road and Eleven Mile. The Treasury and Assessing Offices are located at the first counter to your left as you enter from the front entrance to City Hall.
What are your hours?
City Hall is open from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM Monday through Friday except for holidays.
When should I expect to receive my tax bills and when are they due?
Summer tax bills are mailed on or about June 30 and are payable without penalty thru August 31. Winter tax bills are mailed on or about November 30 and are payable without penalty through February 14. Due dates falling on a weekend or holiday will be extended to the following City business day. NOTE: The lien dates for property taxes are: Summer tax bill – July 1; Winter tax bill – December 1.
My tax bill indicates a mortgage company will be paying my bill but my taxes are not escrowed. What should I do?
Please use your tax bill to pay your taxes. If your tax bill for the next season still shows a mortgage company, you will need to contact them to correct their records.
My tax bill doesn’t indicate that a mortgage company will be paying my property taxes but my taxes are escrowed. What should I do?
Contact your mortgage company. Many mortgage companies now use a tax service which acquires a copy of the entire tax roll and no longer requests individual bills.
I did not receive my tax bill. What should I do?
Please call our Treasury Division at (248) 871-2480 to request a bill. Remember, failure to receive a tax bill does not waive interest and/or penalties.
What are my payment options?
If you would like a paid receipt, include both portions and a self-addressed stamped envelope with your payment and your paid receipt will be mailed back to you. Make the check payable to “City of Farmington Hills” and write your parcel ID number (found on your tax bill) on the face of the check.
If you use online banking, checks should be mailed directly to City of Farmington Hills-Treasury Division, 31555 West Eleven Mile Road, Farmington Hills, MI 48336.
Pay by mail: Postmarks are not accepted. Your payment must be received prior to the delinquency date to avoid delinquent charges. Please enclose the top portion of your tax bill along with your check. Write your parcel ID number (found on your tax bill) on the face of your check and make check payable to “City of Farmington Hills”. Your cancelled check is your receipt.
Pay by use of the drop box: Drop box payments must be placed in the drop box prior to the delinquency date to avoid delinquent charges. Drop box payments received after the due date will be assessed delinquent charges. A drop box slot is located on the eastern wall near the front entrance to City Hall, and a beige box is located in front of the Police Department.
Pay in person: Please bring the entire tax bill form. Have your check made out to “City of Farmington Hills” and write your parcel ID (found on tax bill) on the face of your check.
Pay by credit card via the Internet: Click here and follow instructions. Pay by credit card via a Touch-Tone Phone: Call (866) 874-2058. Select option 1, enter your parcel number and follow the messages. Please Note: A convenience fee of 3% is charged for all credit card payments.
Pay by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT): Go to https://eps.mvpbanking.com and use access code 51156000. First time users will need to establish an account by providing banking information. Use your parcel ID number as the billing account number. If you choose to utilize this option your payment date (shown on confirmation) must be before delinquency date to avoid additional charges.
I recently purchased a home. Will my taxes on this home be about the same amount as the prior owner’s taxes?
No. Until 1994, property was valued for tax purposes at half its market value. This is called the "State Equalized Value" or SEV. That year, voters passed Proposal A, which limited the growth of property tax assessments. The formula under Proposal A keeps the taxable value of a property from growing as fast as the SEV. This gap can increase over time. However, when the property is sold, the taxable value is uncapped and jumps up to the SEV, but only for that year. There could be a substantial increase in your tax depending on the difference between the Taxable Value and the State Equalized Value of your property.
I have not been claiming a homestead exemption on my home. What should I do?
Contact our Assessing Division as (248) 871-2470 to correct your homestead status. State tax law allows the City to correct the homestead status for the current year and 3 years back. If you are due a refund for prior year tax payments, your refund will be issued by the Oakland County Treasurer’s Office.
I do not have children in school. Is there a property tax exemption for this?
No. All residents pay school taxes whether they have children in school or not. However, residents who own and occupy a home as their principal residence pay a lower school tax rate. This is called the Principal Residence Exemption, or PRE. If you are eligible for the PRE, your tax bill should indicate no payment due under the "school operating" line item. If you are not sure whether or not you are eligible for the PRE, call the Assessing Division at (248) 871-2470.
I will not be able to pay my tax bill on time. What should I do?
Current year property taxes are payable to the City of Farmington Hills up through February 28/29 of the following year. On March 1, the taxes are delinquent and payable to the Oakland County Treasurer. Please be aware that properties with delinquent taxes remaining unpaid for two years will be foreclosed. Please direct questions regarding delinquent taxes to the Oakland County Treasurer at (248) 858-0611. For further information about delinquent taxes please log on to http://www.oakgov.com/treasurer.
How do I get a license for my dog?
In Farmington Hills, all dogs four months or older are required to be licensed by Oakland County. To get a license, you must present a valid rabies certificate signed by the veterinarian. You may purchase a license at the City Treasurer’s office, Oakland County Animal Control or at certain veterinarians. Licenses must be renewed yearly by June 1. To renew a dog license at the City Treasurer’s Office, bring a valid rabies certificate and cash or check payment. Dog licenses are $15 but are discounted to $7.50 for spayed or neutered dogs. Dog owners 65 years or older also get a senior citizens discount. Delinquent dog licenses (those not renewed by June 1) cost $30. Per City ordinance, you must have a kennel license to keep more that three dogs. Ordinance violations can be reported to the City Zoning Department at (248) 871-2520. To report a roaming dog, contact Oakland County Animal Control at (248) 391-4102.
Do I need to get a license for my cat?
At this time, the City does not require that cats be licensed.
Where do I apply for a passport?
You can apply for a passport at the Finance Department at 11 Mile and Orchard Lake Road and we will forward your application to the federal government’s passport agency. If you want to renew your passport or change the name on your passport, you can obtain the forms at the Finance Department or at www.travel.state.gov and send them in yourself. Be sure to bring all the proper documentation when you apply. Click here for passport details.
Can I see the City’s Annual Budget?
Yes, the current City Annual budget can be viewed by clicking here.
What is the Capital Improvement Plan?
The Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) is a look at the upcoming year’s capital needs (projects that require major investments) as well as the next five years. It is typically completed prior to the start of the annual budget. State law requires the Planning Commission to approve the CIP after a Public Hearing is held. This document serves as a framework and planning tool for future capital projects such as road construction projects and refurbishing of City facilities.
What is the City of Farmington Hills millage rate?
For the current fiscal year, Farmington Hills taxpayers pay 12.3806 mills. A mill equals $1 in taxation for every $1,000 in taxable value.
My tax bill shows more than just City taxes. Why is that?
The City is a tax collection agent for other taxing agencies providing service in the City, including the Farmington, Walled Lake and Clarenceville School Districts; Oakland County Intermediate School District; State of Michigan; Oakland and Schoolcraft Community Colleges; and Oakland County; Huron Clinton Metropolitan Authority; Farmington Community Library; Oakland County Public Transportation Authority; Oakland County Zoological Authority and the Oakland County Art Institute Authority. In fact, only about 28-35% of your tax dollar goes to the City of Farmington Hills, depending on which local school district you are in. Education (including local schools, intermediate schools, community colleges and the state) receives about 49-59%, while the remaining agencies, including Oakland County receives about 13-16%.
What is revenue sharing and how does Farmington Hills benefit?
Under the Revenue Sharing program, sales taxes collected by the State of Michigan are distributed to local governments. For the current fiscal year, the City of Farmington Hills expects to receive $6.4 million from the State of Michigan in the form of State Shared Revenue.
How much money does the City of Farmington Hills receive from the State of Michigan in the form of Act 51 Gas Tax?
For the current fiscal year, the City of Farmington Hills expects to receive $5.8 million from the State of Michigan in the form of Act 51 Gas Tax revenue.
What is the difference between the Assessed Value and Taxable Value of my home?
Assessed Value is defined by state law as 50% of the market value of the property as of December 31st of the preceding year. Taxable Value is derived from a formula created by Proposal A in 1994, designed to limit tax increases at the rate of inflation. The formula is:
(Previous Taxable Value – Losses) x CPI + Additions = Current Year’s Taxable Value
Losses are defined as physical changes to the property that result in a loss of value…i.e. demolishing a garage.
CPI is the consumer’s price index as calculated by the State of Michigan each October.
Additions are defined as physical improvements to the property that add value and were not previously assessed…i.e. adding a deck.
Why did my taxes go up so much this year?
There are several factors that affect your tax rate:
- Your property’s taxable value. The Taxable Value of a property is adjusted each year based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) and other factors. An increase in taxable value will result in an increase in your taxes.
- A total millage increase. Your tax bill includes City taxes, School taxes, County taxes and other taxes. Since your tax rate is based on your home’s Taxable Value multiplied times the total millage rate, a millage increase from any of the taxing agencies can cause your taxes to go up.
- You purchased a new home. Proposal A, which was passed in 1994, places an annual cap on the growth of property tax assessments; however, when the home is sold, the cap comes off and the assessment reverts to the State Equalized Value (SEV).
I bought my house this year. How can I estimate what my taxes might be next year?
If you live in the Farmington Public School district, your taxes are approximately $43 for each $1,000 of your home’s State Equalized Value or SEV. So, for example, if you purchased your home for $200,000, your SEV is $100,000 or 50% of the market value. At $43 per thousand, your taxes will be approximately $4,300 per year. However, keep in mind that the assessed value and millage rates may change for next year, so this is only an estimate.
How is my assessed value calculated?
All assessed values are calculated according the State Tax Commission standards. This value is shown as the State Equalized Value or SEV on your tax statement. It is a mass appraisal technique that takes into account the current cost to replicate your house and then depreciates that cost based on the age of the structure. It is then adjusted to market value by comparing the depreciated cost of homes that have sold in your area to their sales price. Each year, we are required by law to analyze sales by economic neighborhood using a two-year sales study to adjust that neighborhood so that assessed values are at 50% of market value.
I just bought my house. Shouldn't the assessed value automatically be half of what I paid?
By state law, a home's assessed value is not half its purchase price, but half of its market value. See the question above to find out how your home's value is calculated.
I want to know what information you have on my property. How can I get this information?
Assessment information on your home is public record and copies are available at the Assessor’s Office at City Hall, 31555 W. Eleven Mile just west of Orchard Lake Road. We also have sales studies available by neighborhood which includes all of the deeds and property transfers for the preceding three years. Some information, such as square footage and year built, can be given over the phone. Call us at (248) 871-2470 for details.
Is my property assessment information available on the Internet?
Yes, please click here for more information on property assessment information.
How do I apply for a job with the City of Farmington Hills Fire Department?
The City of Farmington Hills is always look for possible new candidates for paid-on-call firefighters. The City of Farmington Hills will provide all necessary training for all new candidates. To check current openings in the Farmington Hills Fire Department, click here.
I am interested in my child’s car seat be inspected. Does the City of Farmington Hills have certified car seat technicians?
Yes. Click here to learn more about certified car seat technicians.
Where are the fire stations located?
Five fire stations are strategically located throughout the City. Click here for Fire Station locations.
I would like to burn brush, leaves or debris at my house or business. Does the City code allow this?
Outside fires are not permitted by Ordinance. Read the Code of Ordinances.
I would like to purchase a commercial outdoor fire pit from a local hardware store. Are they allowed?
The Fire Department discourages the use of commercially produced outdoor fire places; however, use is not prohibited as long as the unit does not produce smoke or noxious odors. If a unit is used, it must be a minimum of 15 feet from any structure and only used seasoned fire wood.
What kind of medical service does the fire department have?
The Fire Department provides advanced life support services and is staffed with firefighters/paramedics and Emergency Medical Technicians. Click here for more information about EMT.
What is the Fire Department’s non-emergency phone number?
For reporting non-emergency incidents, please contact the Dispatch Center at (248) 871-2600. Fire Department administration can be contacted at (248) 871-2800, Monday - Friday from 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM.
I would like to take a CPR class. Are there any available?
The Fire Department does not offer CPR classes; however, CPR classes can be scheduled through the Costick Activities Center at (248) 473-1800.
What has the City done to prepare for a terrorist attack?
The City has an aggressive emergency management program, which is always preparing for many types of disasters including a terrorist attack. The Fire Department has been working to train and equip our firefighters in order to respond to any type of event, and provide a appropriate response. The City also has a commission, called the Citizens Corps Council for Emergency Preparedness, that provides information and sponsors programs to help local citizens prepare for any type of local emergency.
How often should I change my smoke detector batteries?
The batteries must be replaced every six months, so we recommend that you change your smoke detector batteries every time you change your clocks. In addition to changing your smoke detector batteries, your smoke detectors must be tested. Although smoke detectors differ by model (please review your installation and owners manual), most can be tested by pressing and holding the test button on the unit. The smoke detector will usually beep several times.
How many calls does the Fire Department respond to?
For details on Fire Department calls, click here to review the Fire Department annual report.
Are there always firefighters at the stations?
The City of Farmington Hills uses a combination of full-time (career) and part-time (paid-on-call) firefighters. Station 5, located at 11-mile and Orchard Lake Road, is staffed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
The other four stations are staffed Monday-Friday from 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM. In the evenings and on weekends, paid-on-call fire fighters respond from their homes, business or other locations, to the stations and then to the emergency. The paid on call firefighters are notified through a radio pager that activates when there is an emergency in their district.
Why did so many trucks respond to the emergency on my street?
Sometimes, multiple fire trucks are needed in order to bring enough firefighters and equipment to handle the emergency. When responding to medical emergencies, we are required to send two licensed paramedics to the scene as quickly as possible. Our goal is to send the two paramedics together, but that is not always possible and they may arrive from two different locations. If a police patrol car is in the area, the officers may also respond. And, for certain types of medical emergencies, we may also send the Battalion Chief vehicle, which has very specialized medical equipment.
Why does the Fire Department perform inspections on my business?
The Fire Department conducts business inspections to ensure that the provisions of the Farmington Hills fire code are met and to identify violations. Inspections are also performed to help educate and protect the occupants from some of the preventable fires.
Can I choose which hospital the fire department transports me to?
The Fire Department is obligated to transport critically injured patients to the most appropriate and/or closest facility. This will many times be Botsford General Hospital. The Fire Department will also transport to the following facilities based on patient condition: Providence Southfield /Novi, St. Mary’s (Livonia), William Beaumont, Henry Ford West Bloomfield, or Huron Valley Hospital.
I need to make changes to my fire extinguishing system or my fire alarm system in my business. Do I need a permit?
To change or alter an existing system in a commercial building, you must have a permit from the Fire Prevention Division. You can contact them at (248) 871-2820.
How should my address be posted on my house or business?
The City of Farmington Hills code requires that all business have an address on the street side of the business. The address must be clearly visible from the street, and be properly maintained. Contact the Zoning Dept. at (248) 871-2520 for details.
There is a fire hydrant in my front yard. Can I plant bushes or flowers around it?
All fire hydrants must remain clear at all times and must be visible at all times, for emergency use. Any bushes, flowers and other foliage near a fire hydrant must not hinder the use of the hydrant at any time.
Planning & Community Development
What type of work requires building permits?
- Basement Finish
- Change in Existing
- Change of Use
- Hot Tub
- New Home
- Structural Change
- Window Replacement
When do I need a plumbing permit? Some listed below.
- Backflow Preventer
- Floor Drain
- Grease Trap
- Lawn Sprinkler
- New Sewer Service
- New Water Service
- Second Meter (Irrigation)
- Septic Bypass
- Sump & Pump
- Water Distribution Piping>10’
When do I need an electrical permit? Some listed below.
- Air Conditioner
- Clothes Dryer
- Fire Alarm
- Heat Pump
- Illuminated Sign
- New Circuit(s)
- New Oven/Range
- New Service
- Pool/Spa/Hot Tub
- Smoke Detector(s)
- Sump Pump
- Water Heater
When do I need a heating/cooling permit? Some listed below.
- Air Cleaner
- Air Conditioning
- Air Handler
- Cooling Tower
- Gas Piping
- New Duct
- Pre-Fab Fireplace
- Unit Heater
- Wood Stove
Are there other items for which I need a permit?
You may be required to obtain a Zoning Compliance permit for the following. Check with the Zoning Division at (248) 871-2520
- Basketball Backboards
- Flag Poles
- Playground Equipment
- Temporary Signs
- Wading Pools
Does Farmington Hills offer low income housing, rental subsidies or a Section 8 Program?
No. The City’s Community Development Block Grant funds are used for housing rehabilitation work and capital projects.
Does Farmington Hills have a program to assist homeowners make repairs to their homes?
Yes. Low- and moderate-income households may be eligible to receive financial assistance through the Housing Rehabilitation Program for code related repairs. Contact the Community Development Office (248) 871-2549 or click here for more information about financial assistance.
Do I need to get a tree permit to remove a tree at my house?
A homeowner can remove two protected trees (trees 6" in diameter or greater measured 4’ off the ground) each calendar year without getting a permit unless they are Landmark trees which are generally defined as trees 24" diameter or greater that are in good condition. Tree Permits are required to remove Landmark trees.
How do I get a tree permit if I want to take down a tree at my house?
Tree Permits can be downloaded from our website or can be picked up at the Planning Office counter.
Does the City offer any financial help to homeowners to remove dead ash trees?
No. City efforts have focused on sharing information with the public about the infestation.
Do I need a tree permit to remove dead trees?
No. Dead trees are exempt from the Ordinance.
How can I get a copy of the Planning Commission agenda?
Click here for Planning Commission agendas.
How is my property zoned?
You can check the zoning of your property here.
Are the Planning and Community Development Department’s applications available on line?
Yes, please click here for Community Development Department's applications.
How can I obtain a copy of the Zoning Ordinance?
The Zoning Ordinance can be purchased at Treasury or by clicking here.
I want to put up a fence. What should I do?
As a general rule fences over 3 feet tall can only be in the rear yard of your property. Even then, this rule will differ if you are on a corner lot. Fence Permits are issued at the Planning Office and cost $10.00. The fence ordinance is listed with the other ordinances. This is one of the items that is particularly dependent on definitions and on zoning district. To save time, discussion of the proposed fence with the Planning Office (248.871.2540) is advisable before making application. For clarity, you may wish to fax a plot plan showing the proposed location and height of the fence to the Planning Office (248.871.2521) before your discussion. To expedite matters, when your application is completed, you may wish to bring it to your subdivision association, if applicable, for their approval. Some subdivisions prohibit fences altogether. (§34-551)
**Principal applicable sections of the code in parentheses.
How big a shed or garage can I build?
There are area limits imposed by the Zoning Ordinance. The area of all accessory uses – the area of your attached garage plus any detached garages and sheds and any other buildings (structures with roofs) on your property) are added together. The amount permitted is either 750 Square feet or 50 percent of the floor area of your house (not counting the attached garage) whichever is the larger of the two figures but not to exceed a total of 1250 square feet.
You will need a permit from the Building Division for those buildings of 200 square feet and over.
The proper location of these buildings depends upon the zoning district in which you are located, plus there are limits on the amount of lot coverage permitted, so check with Zoning at the beginning of this process to make it easier. Also, some Subdivision Deed Restrictions do not permit detached accessory buildings. If you have a Subdivision Association, check with them about your deed restrictions.
My neighbor has junk/junk cars all over his/her property. What can I do?
There are rules within the City Code that prohibit outdoor storage of junk cars and of junk, trash and debris. If speaking to your neighbor hasn’t changed the behavior, or if you feel uncomfortable talking to your neighbor about the mess on his or her property, then you can call the Zoning Division at (248) 871-2520 (at any time; there is voice mail after hours). Please give us the address of the property at which the suspected violation is located and a description of the problem. Permission for us to enter your property to view the violation would also be helpful. A zoning inspector to whom the area is assigned will investigate. If a violation exists, the Inspector will approach the resident, describe the law and the violation and ask for his or her cooperation correcting it. If the violation persists, the City may take the violator to court, and if necessary, can obtain a court order requiring the property owner to clean up, or permitting the City to come on the property, correct the violation, and bill the property owner for the costs. (§17-52)
There’s a house in my subdivision that always has trash out at the curb.
The Zoning Division often receives complaints about trash that is placed at the curb earlier than the rules permit. [The rules say that all bundles, bags, containers, etc. should be placed at the curb no earlier than 6:00 p.m. on the day before collection. Containers must then be removed no later than 12 hours after collection.] These complaints are often from neighbors who are having guests or selling their homes or otherwise want to enjoy the wonderful neighborhoods they live in. We explain this to the violators, but if that does not change the behavior, the same enforcement process described above (including the possibility of court action) is employed. (§14-10)
What laws are there governing temporary signs?
Lots of illegal temporary signs are placed at the roadside. Our taxes then go to the pick up and disposal of these signs. Political signs and community event signs are permitted when they conform to placement and time restrictions. Signs advertising property for sale or for lease are permitted only on property that is for sale or lease when the signs are no larger than 12 square feet, 6 feet high and set back at least 5 feet from the property line. Garage sale and open house signs are covered below. Certain types of temporary signs are available for businesses. All other signs -- any questions, check with the Zoning Division at 248.871.2520 -- are not permitted. Please don’t be one of the litterers that clutter up our community. The roadsides, clear of signs, are far more beautiful, less disturbing to the eye. These illegal signs are quite different from the legal "accessory signs" of our local businesses, who register, who pay taxes, and who are part of the community. (§34-543)
How does a business get a temporary sign permit?
Temporary accessory signs (signs that pertain to the property on which they are located) are permitted within all business districts and within a light industrial district. Temporary wall signs may be erected for a period of 14 days each, not more than four times within any 12-month period. They may be no larger than 36 square feet and may not extend beyond the wall to which they are attached. Temporary freestanding signs are only permitted as grand opening signs. These cannot not be greater than 16 square feet in area, not more than four (4) feet above the ground, and must have a setback of at least 10 feet from the property line. This option is available only within 6 months of the issuance of a certificate of occupancy.
Temporary sign permits cost $10.00 and must be obtained at the Zoning Division. (§7-330)
I want to hold a garage sale/open house. Where can I put my signs?
Garage sale/open house signs are permitted but with the following restrictions:
These signs may not have a total surface area greater than 5 square feet for a single faced sign; 10 square feet for a double faced sign, and shall not exceed a height of more than 4 feet.
These signs may not be located in the right of way nor on utility poles. They may only be located on private property— and then only with the express consent of the owner. One sign may be located at each entranceway to, and at each corner within, the neighborhood in which the open house or garage sale is occurring. These signs may not be posted more than 1 mile from the property at which the garage sale or open house is taking place.
These signs may not be posted more than 24 hours prior to the commencement of the open house or garage sale, and must be removed within 24 hours after the conclusion of the event. These signs may not be posted for a period of more than 5 days. (§22-96)
- Garage sales are permitted only as an accessory use. For example, if the frequency of garage sales at a single address exceeds one in the spring, one in the fall, it could be viewed as a business that would not be permitted.
Can I store a recreational vehicle or boat at my house?
According to the City’s Zoning Ordinance, you may store recreational equipment at your home under specific conditions.
No recreational equipment may be stored in the front yard unless you are actively loading or unloading it, and then for a period of not more than 24 hours.
If your recreational equipment is less than 6 feet in height you may store it in an interior side yard.
If your recreational equipment is over 6 feet in height, it may be stored only within the rear yard. It must be set back at least 6 feet from the rear lot line, 10 feet from the house, and at least the minimum side setback of the district. (§34-546).
Since further restrictions apply if you are on a corner lot, and the minimum side setback varies according to your zoning district, and there are lot coverage limitations, we advise you to contact the Zoning Division for information about your specific lot. Further, while the City permits storage of recreational equipment, certain subdivision deed restrictions do not. We advise you to consult with your subdivision association.
How do I apply for a Pistol Purchase Permit (License to Purchase – LTP)?
Pistols may be purchased directly from a licensed gun dealer without obtaining a LTP. A LTP is required when a pistol is purchased from an individual who is not a licensed gun dealer. Please see the Police Administration Records Section page for more information or call the Records Section at (248) 871-2720.
Concealed Pistol License (CPL) applications can be obtained at the Police Department Command Desk. The applications are processed by Oakland County. For more information call (248) 858-0521.
How can I protect my home from crime by using landscaping?
Guidelines and suggestions on ways to use landscaping to protect your home. Should you have any questions regarding Crime Prevention, call (248) 871-2750.
How can I contact a police school liaison officer for a Farmington Hills school?
Contact the Investigative Division at (248) 871-2770.
How can I schedule a police building tour?
Tours, presentations, or appearances by the Community Officer may be requested through the Crime Prevention Section at to (248) 871-2750.
How can I notify police that I will be away on vacation?
The Vacation Hotline, (248) 871-2762, is a direct line to a Crime Prevention Section voicemail recorder. It is designed to provide department personnel with information concerning an address, while the resident is on vacation. It does not provide for special attention or extra patrol but is a source of pertinent information to assist personnel responding to a run at that location.
When you call the Vacation Hotline be sure to include your name, address, dates of departure / return, a contact person, and any information such as cars left in the driveway or lights on timers.
How can I get an alarm system hooked up to the Police Department?
Alarm systems are not directly "hooked up" to the Police Department; however, alarm system usage and requirements are addressed by City Ordinance. It requires that all alarm users register their systems with the police department. A $15 registration fee must be paid at the time of registration. A registration form, including a copy of the ordinance, will be mailed upon request. Contact the Crime Prevention Section with any questions or to request a registration form. The phone number for the Alarm Billing Clerk is (248) 871-2720.
How can I get copies of police reports?
Copies of police incident and traffic accident reports may be obtained through the Records Section, 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM, Monday – Friday. Reports are generally available 48 to 72 hours after the incident occurred.
In order to obtain a copy of a report the requestor’s name must appear in the report or a notarized authorization is necessary. Certain information, governed by state and federal privacy laws, is always removed from the report, prior to copying. This may include, but is not limited to, phone numbers, witness information, suspect information (until a case is completely adjudicated), and medical data.
Incident report copy fees are: $5 for pages 1-3, $1.50 per page for pages 4-10, and $1 per page for pages 11 and up. All accident reports are $5 regardless of the number of pages.
How can I get a stop sign or traffic control device installed in my neighborhood?
Requests for the placement of traffic control devices, such as speed bumps or stop signs, should be made to the City’s Traffic Engineer at (248) 871-2560.
How do I report a traffic accident?
Michigan law requires a report to be filed if the crash occurred on a public roadway and resulted in an injury or combined damage in excess of $1,000. It is often easiest to report a traffic crash at the time it occurs. Officers will respond to the scene when summoned to file such a report. If you are filing a traffic crash report at a later time or date, you will need to contact the other involved party or parties and schedule a mutually acceptable time for all parties to appear at the station. If possible, you should drive the involved vehicle so the officer taking the report may inspect damage. Reports can be made 24 hours a day at the front desk of the police station.
How can I get my firearm back from the Police Department?
Firearms cannot be released to persons with felony conviction records. Persons picking up handguns must provide a valid gun registration for those weapons at the time of release. In cases of weapons confiscated as a result of a domestic altercation, the owner must obtain a letter signed and notarized by all parties involved in the incident. In the event the letter cannot be obtained, the owner must obtain a court order mandating the release of those weapons. All property must be authorized for release by the officer in charge of the case. Call (248) 871-2743 for more information.
Does the Police Department hold an auction?
The City auctions all items via the Internet. Click here to visit the City's auction website. Please click on the Surplus Auction tab to view the items. Items that typically appear for auction include furniture, clothing, electronic items, sporting goods, bicycles, yard maintenance equipment, outdated fire fighting and police equipment and adjudicated police property, etc.
How do I get my property back from the Police Department?
Hours for property release are Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays (except holidays) from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM. Property will only be released to the person who is named by the releasing officer. The individual must have identification at the time of release. If the person named is unavailable to pick up their property, they can name an alternate person to pick it up. That person must have a letter signed and notarized by the owner of the property, authorizing that individual to pick up their property. That person must also provide proper identification at the time of release. Questions concerning property should be directed to the Property Officer at (248) 871-2743, weekdays between 7:00 AM and 3:00 PM.
How do I contact the police in an emergency?
Call 9-1-1. Due to the limited number of available incoming 9-1-1 telephone lines, use of this system is restricted to true emergencies. Use of the 9-1-1 system is reserved to report a serious crime in progress, or just occurred, or a life threatening situation such as a medical emergency, fire, or car accident involving personal injury.
How do I contact the police for a non-emergency?
You can call (248) 871-2600 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. To contact other departments within the Police Department, click here.
Where are you located?
The Farmington Hills Police Department is located on the City Hall campus on the southwest corner of Eleven Mile and Orchard Lake Roads. Our mailing address is:
Farmington Hills Police Department
31655 West Eleven Mile Road
Farmington Hills, Michigan 48336-1170
What kinds of programs does the Police Department offer?
Working under our community policing philosophy that encourages a partnership between the police and the community, we offer many programs and services to citizens of all ages. Learn more about Police Department programs.
How can I get a job with the Farmington Hills Police Department?
Click here for information on working for the Police Department.
How do I report a missing pet?
If you have a missing or runaway pet, you should contact the Oakland County Animal shelter at (248) 391-4102, or the Farmington Hills Police Department at (248) 871-2610. All lost or stray animals found by the Farmington Hills Police Department are turned over to the Oakland County Animal Shelter.
How do I request extra patrol or report suspicious activity?
If you live or work in Farmington Hills and feel that the police should be aware of certain information (such as on-going problems, suspicious activity, inability to protect property, stalking, or continued victimization, you should call the Farmington Hills police at (248) 871-2610 and provide the information to a Desk Officer. This information will be provided to every Patrol Officer prior to going on duty.
How do I get a personal protection order (PPO)?
A Personal Protection Order is a court order that protects you from being harassed, beaten, assaulted, molested, wounded, or stalked. The PPO prohibits a named individual from doing these things to you. It also prohibits the named individual from entering your premises and removing your children, unless there is an overriding court order.
To obtain a PPO you must go to the Oakland County Circuit Court (6th Circuit court) at 1200 North Telegraph in Pontiac, where you ask a clerk for a "do-it-yourself PPO packet." You must follow the instructions carefully when filling out the forms. The forms are then forwarded to a Judge. To have a named individual served notice of the PPO, you can contact the Oakland county Sheriff’s Office Civil Division, located in the same complex, at 1200 Telegraph in Pontiac, or call at (248) 452-9725.
Is there a list of counseling agencies I can contact?
If you need help from other Public Service Agencies, here is a list of counseling organizations.
How can I find out the status of a police investigation?
Due to the confidential and sensitive nature of criminal investigations, information and the status of open investigations will not be provided over the Internet. If you are the victim of a crime and request updated information regarding the status of your case, please contact the Investigative Division. You may telephone the Investigative Division during normal business hours at (248) 871-2770, Monday through Friday, 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM. Please be prepared to provide the complaint number of your case, if known. If the detective in charge is unavailable to promptly respond, please request to speak with a supervisor.
How can I find out about unsolved crimes?
The Farmington Hills Police Department wants your help in solving the crimes listed. If you have any information that may help in solving these crimes, please contact us by phone at (248) 871-2610, or by email.
How can I get information about sexual assault?
If you are in immediate danger, or have suffered a sexual assault, and/or need medical assistance as a result of a sexual assault call 911 immediately, or ask a neighbor to call if you are unable. If your situation is not an emergency, but you wish to report the incident, call the Farmington Hills Police Department or come to the Farmington Hills Police Department. All incidents of sexual assault should be reported to law enforcement. This should be done as soon as possible after the incident to preserve evidence. You should also seek medical attention for any injuries you may have suffered.
How do I report domestic violence to the police?
If you are in immediate danger, call 911 or ask a neighbor to call if you are unable. If you are not in immediate danger but wish to report the incident, call the Farmington Hills Police Department or come to the Farmington Hills Police Department. This should be done as soon as possible after the incident to preserve evidence. You should also seek medical attention for any injuries you may have suffered.
Why wasn’t my garbage picked up?
Garbage needs to be at the curbside by 7:00 AM or it may be missed. Schedules also can vary from the pickup time you’re accustomed to due to weather conditions or unusually heavy loads and your garbage may not have been picked up yet. Your garbage might be too large or too heavy; containers must not be more than 32 gallons in capacity and must not exceed 60 pounds. Bulk items are picked up by a separate truck which follows a different schedule from the regular garbage truck.
Which holidays affect my garbage collection schedule?
There are six holidays during the year when garbage collection is not scheduled: New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day. Garbage will be picked up one day late following these holidays with Friday’s collection made on Saturday.
What can I put in my green recycling bin?
Click here for Recycling Guideline information.
How do I dispose of carpeting?
Carpeting must be rolled and cut into sections of four feet or less, then taped or tied.
How do I dispose of tires?
Tires are no longer accepted at the curbside. Please call RRRASOC at (248) 208-2270 for disposal information.
How do I get rid of a bulk item?
Bulk items such as furniture or appliances can go at the curbside with the regular trash. Garbage truck drivers radio the bulk truck drivers who will then add the item to their pickup list.
Who do I call about a dead tree in the right-of-way?
Call the Division of Public Works at (248) 871-2850 if the tree is on City property. For dead trees on private property, you will need to call a private contractor.
How do I get rid of hazardous materials?
Household hazardous materials are collected at Hazardous Materials Drop-off days which are scheduled from April through October in Farmington Hills and several neighboring communities. Click here for more information on hazardous materials.
How do I dispose of hypodermic needles?
Dispose of needles in a hard container such as a laundry detergent bottle or a coffee can. Tape the lid on, mark it “syringes,” and place it at the curbside with the regular trash.
Who do I call when I have problems with my water?
Water for the City of Farmington Hills is administered by the Oakland County Water and Sewer Department. For problems with water pressure or water shutoffs, please call (248) 858-1110.
Does the City plow subdivision streets?
Snow plowing priority is given to major roads and school bus routes. Local streets are plowed following an accumulation of four inches or more of snow. If the accumulation is less than four inches, subdivision streets are spot salted on hills, curves, and intersections.
How do I dispose of household batteries?
The Division of Public Works at 27245 Halsted (just south of 12 Mile) has a household battery drop-off barrel. It is located near the south end of the building and is accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Household batteries may also be taken to a Hazardous Materials Drop-off Day.
How do I get rid of used motor oil?
Used motor oil contains contaminants that should not be placed in the regular trash, poured down a drain or on the ground. It needs to be taken to a Hazardous Materials Drop–off day or taken to a local service station for recycling. Not all service stations provide this service and prices vary, so call in advance for information.
What can I do with my old latex paint?
If only a small amount is left in the can, brush the paint on newspapers and throw out the empty can and the newspapers at curbside. If more than 1/2 inch is left in the can, add an absorbent material such as sand or kitty litter. When paint has solidified, put the can out with the regular trash. Be sure to leave the lid off so the garbage hauler knows that the paint is dried rather than liquid. Another option is to use the paint as a base coat or donate it to a school art class, drama club, or local church.
Do I need to purchase water and sewer line insurance?
Click here for more information about water and sewer line insurance.
What is the swimming level my child should be in?
It depends on the age and skill of the child. See the Special Services Activities Guide for a description of the various swimming levels.
How can I check on openings for a particular class?
Call the Costick Center at (248) 473-1800 to check.
Can I transfer from one section of a class to another?
Yes, as long as an opening exists.
Are there membership costs for recreation programs in addition to class fees?
What are the dates and times for open gym?
Dates and times are listed in the Special Services Activities Guide
What are your office hours?
8:30 AM – 4:30 PM Monday through Friday and 8:30 AM - 7:00 PM on Wednesdays.
Where are you located?
The office is in the Costick Center at 28600 Eleven Mile Road, 1/4 mile east of Middlebelt.
Can I register for a class by phone?
You can register by mail, fax, in person, or by Tele Trac. For details, refer to the registration section of the Special Services Activities Guide.
How can I reserve the shelter in Heritage Park?
Call the Costick Center at (248) 473-1800 to check on availability.
Does the City offer cultural programs (art, music, theater) for children and adults?
Yes, the City offers a wide range of cultural arts programs, including art, music, dance and performance classes, workshops, camps, and lessons, along with Youth Theater, Youth Choir, the Farmington Community Choir, indoor concerts, free summer concerts in Heritage Park, festivals, exhibits, and other special programs. For detailed information on programs, locations, fees and registration, see the Special Services Activities Guide or call the Cultural Arts Division at (248) 473-1859 or (248) 473-1856 or visit the Cultural Arts page of the website.
How and where do I register?
You may register for Cultural Arts, Recreation, Youth, and Senior classes at the Costick Center, 28600 W. Eleven Mile Road, Monday – Friday between 8:30 AM and 4:30 PM; by downloading a form from the website and faxing it in, or through our registration system. Click here to see the Special Services Activities Guide and registration form.
I do not live in Farmington Hills, but my children attend Farmington Public Schools. Do I have to pay a non-resident fee?
Do you offer scholarships?
Yes, some scholarships are available if students meet certain qualifications. Please call (248) 473-1859 for detailed information.
How do I order tickets for concerts?
Tickets for concerts and Cultural Arts events may be ordered over the phone by calling the Cultural Arts Division ticket hotline at (248)-473-1848, or at the Costick Center, 28600 West Eleven Mile Road, Monday – Friday between 8:30 AM and 4:30 PM. Click here for more information on concerts, or call (248) 473-1870. Tickets may also be purchased online.
Is there reserved seating? What time does the theater open?
Currently, there is no reserved seating for indoor concerts or youth theatre productions, but all seats in the auditorium are good ones, as none are far from the stage. Generally, doors open ½ hour before the performance is scheduled to begin.
What happens if there is inclement weather for summer concerts?
Most concerts will be moved indoors to the Costick Center (28600 W. Eleven Mile Road). A decision will be made at least one hour before the concert; you can check the concert hotline at (248) 473- 1848.
How do I get my work displayed in the City Gallery or other City venues?
Call the Cultural Arts Division at (248) 473-1856 for information.
How do I get information on various other cultural events in the area?
Call the Cultural Arts Division at (248)-473-1856 for current information on local cultural events and organizations. Click here to be placed on the Cultural Arts e-mail list.
Mayor’s Youth Council
What is the Mayor’s Youth Council?
The Mayor’s Youth Council is a City commission made up of young people who advise the Mayor or City Council regarding decisions that impact the youth in our community.
Why does the local government care about what kids think?
Young people, while not having voting privileges or significant clout, are still constituents of the City and have valid points and ideas about the running of the City. Also, allowing youth more ownership and responsibility in their community ensures a healthy growing relationship between the youth, the community, and the local government for years to come.
Are the Mayor’s Youth Council meetings always boring like usual government stuff?
No. The meetings move quickly, with very few of the "adult rules" to restrain youth from talking about what they like or how they feel about what is going on in the City. There are minutes and agendas, but they only serve to make the meetings go faster. Parties and other excursions are planned, decisions are made, and free pizza and pop are available.
Senior Adult Division
What services and activities does the Senior Division offer?
The Senior Division offers a wide variety activities and services to "Adults 50 & Better" in the Cities of Farmington Hills and Farmington at the Costick Activities Center. Check out our Program Brochure to find out about the many programs and classes that are offered. A daily hot lunch and cold light lunch is offered at 12:15 pm in Conway Hall for $2.50. Other services include: Meals on Wheels, Adult Respite/Day services, Transportation & Outreach.
What are your hours?
Regular Senior Adult Center hours are Monday through Friday from 9:30 AM – 3:30 PM.
Evening and weekend programs are available. Check with "The Messenger for Active Adults" and the Farmington Hills Recreation Program Schedule for dates and times.
How do you become a member? Is there a membership fee?
All participants are required to register at the Costick Activities Center before attending. There is no membership fee. There are charges for specific classes and events.
How old do you have to be?
Activities and classes are offered to adults 50 and better. Meals on Wheels, a federally subsidized program, requires 60 years of age and older; Transportation requires 55 years of age and older or handicapped.
Where do you find out about the activities? Can I be put on a mailing list for your newsletter?
Information for adults age 50 & better can be found in a variety of places: The Messenger, a monthly newsletter, Cable TV Channel 8.1, the Farmington Hills Department of Special Services Recreation Program Schedule, FOCUS (the City newsletter) and on-site at the Costick Activities Center.
What is the average age of the participants?
That depends on the class or activity.
When is the gift shop open?
Daily, but hours vary based on volunteer availability.
Do you have a Transportation Program? Do you have to be a resident? What is the cost?
Transportation is available to Farmington Hills/Farmington residents, ages 55 years and older or handicapped, Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM. Medical appointments are given priority. Must call in advance for availability. Suggested donation is $2 each way.
What kind of assistance is available to seniors?
Assistance is available to residents for such services as prescription assistance, food programs, home chore and minor home repair, housing information, adult respite day program and support groups. Call (248) 473-1830 for more information.
Do you need volunteers?
Volunteers are always welcome. Please call (248) 473-1862 for more information.