Residential Fence Ordinances and Codes for Cicero, IL
Located just West of Chicago, this suburban city of 84,000 has a long history and a diverse population. Its neighborhoods are full of well-maintained older homes, often built near neighboring houses. From solid brick construction to other styles, they are uniquely Midwestern in design and home to families who take pride in their ownership. It’s a popular suburban city with Chicago’s large Hispanic population, and also has a long history of being a city where immigrants from Czechoslovakia and other eastern European settlers made their homes.
General Requirements for Residential Fences
Fence regulations in Cicero are designed to match the layout of its residential streets and to preserve the beauty of its family-oriented neighborhoods. The moderate family incomes in this community also play a role in the design of fences, which are typically used to enclose side and back yards only. Before planning a new fence for any property in this city, it’s important to be aware of the building codes and rules for materials and installation. The information below can help you with planning, whether you will build your own fence or hire a licensed contractor to do the job.
- Building Permit Required? – All fence projects in Cicero require a building permit to ensure that they are built in accordance with local regulations. The permit fee is $50.
- Permit Documentation Needed – When applying for a permit, you need plan drawings to scale, along with a current plat of survey. You’ll also need specifications for materials and a description of the installation methods. The builder, either the owner or contractor, must be identified.
- Fence Materials Allowed – Wood, chain link, PVC vinyl, and ornamental steel and aluminum are allowed for residential properties.
- Maximum Height Limits – Fences are limited to 5′ in height, but may be up to 7′ in height if adjacent to a commercial or industrial site or along a railroad right of way.
- Property Line Issues – All fences must be installed at least four inches inside property lines. No back-to-back fences less than four feet apart are allowed.
- Inspections Needed – All installations must be inspected by city building inspectors after completion.
- Building Authority Contact – 708-656-3600
- Building Department Website
Specific Rules and Restrictions
- Front Yard Fences – New residential front yard fences are not allowed. Existing fences in front yards must be maintained in good condition and have a non-locking gate.
- Side Yard Fences – These are allowed, with the following restrictions:
- Materials must be wood, chain link, steel or aluminum ornamental or PVC vinyl.
- Maximum height of 5 feet.
- At least 15′ spacing between adjacent buildings.
- Gates must be non-locking.
- Back Yard Fences – These are allowed in residential areas, with the following rules:
- Wood, chain link, ornamental aluminum or steel, or PVC materials
- Maximum height from average ground level is 5 feet.
- Fences up to 7′ high are allowed next to commercial properties and railroad lines.
- Vacant lots must be fenced in residential areas with an open, non-combustible fence 6′ high.
- Corner Lot Restrictions – No specific restrictions apply to such installations, which must comply with normal rules. Since front yard fences are not allowed, visibility regulations are not applicable.
- Other Restrictions – Barbed wire, razor wire and electric fences are not allowed in any residential area.
- Homeowner’s Association Issues – In developments or subdivisions with HOAs, the association rules may be different from city rules.
- Swimming Pool Fences – Adequate fencing may be required for swimming pool installation building permits
- Gates and Access Rules – Side yard and existing front yard gates may not be lockable.
- Fence Prohibitions
- No barbed wire, razor wire or electrically charged residential fences.
- New front yard residential fences are prohibited.
- No decks other than first floor decks may have privacy fences.
- Dog run fences are prohibited except in rear yards.
- Non-conforming fences built prior to regulations may remain, but must be maintained in undamaged condition.
- Variances – Variations from the city ordinances may be made in exceptional situations. An official application with the zoning administrator for a variance is required along with notification of neighboring property owners.
Commercial Fence Codes
- Maximum Height Information – Fences in commercial or industrial zones may not exceed 8′ in height.
- Security Fence Rules – Barbed wire is permitted in manufacturing districts, but must be installed at least 8′ above the ground.
- Other Commercial Fencing Issues
- Open lots in commercial or industrial zones must be fenced.
- Front yard fences are prohibited, except for open lots.
Residential Fence Building Fence Codes in Cicero, IL
A well-designed and installed fence is an asset for any residential property, but it must meet all local building codes and rules. In Cicero, as in most jurisdictions, fences that are built without the proper permits, along with non-conforming or poorly maintained fences are considered a nuisance. Code and ordinance enforcement officials can order them to be removed or brought into conformance. If that is not done within 30 days of notifications, or after an extension of that time is granted, the owner can be fined and may have to pay all costs if the city removes the fence. Safety and maintenance of property values are the reason for all regulations in this city.