Department of Permitting, Inspections and Enforcement (DPIE) FAQ

Department of Permitting, Inspections, and Enforcement:  Question and Answers (pdf)

Original flier distributed at October 2017 CSTCA meeting by DPIE representatives.

If I have a complaint, who do I call?

The 311 call center receives all complaints, determines what agency is responsible for that particular complaint and refers the complaint to that agency for investigation.

To whom do I report a vacant and open property?

Vacant/open property should be reported to 311 for the Enforcement Division to investigate.

To whom do I report a property with tall grass or trash and debris?

Tall grass (12 inches or above) and trash, debris or open storage should be reported to 311 for investigation by the Enforcement Division.

I have bulk trash that needs to be removed. Who do I call?

Contact the Bulky Trash Unit at 301-952- 7600 or online at to schedule an appointment for removal.

Can I park my car in my yard?

Vehicles may not be parked on the grass or unpaved surfaces. The Revenue Authority will issue a citation for parking on the grass (301-772- 2060).

How many cars can I have on my property?

There is no limit provided the vehicles have current tags, are not dismantled, are operable, and are parked on paved surfaces.

My neighbor is taking up all the street parking with their cars. Is this a violation?

All vehicles parked on the street must be operable and have current tags. There is no limit to the number of vehicles that may be parked legally on the street. Vehicles must be moved every 72 hours. Please report abandoned cars to 311 and the Abandoned Vehicle Unit will investigate 301-952- 1873.

Can I park a commercial vehicle on my property?

No, commercial vehicles are prohibited from parking on residential property.

Commercial vehicles are being parked on the street overnight in my neighborhoods, is this legal?

No, commercial vehicles are prohibited from parking on the street in residential neighborhoods. Please report to 311.

If commercial vehicles are registered to someone in the house does that mean they are running a business out of the house?

Not necessarily, the business address could be different. Enforcement Division must thoroughly investigate each case to determine if a business is being operated.

Does a business need a license?

All businesses must apply for a Use and Occupancy Permit and be approved through MNCPPC for that specific use. This includes all home based businesses.

How do I find out if a specific business is allowed in my neighborhood?

Call MNCPPC to determine if a specific business can operate in your neighborhood.

Do I need a license to rent my house?

Yes, a license is required to rent, however limited exemptions do apply. You must apply online for a rental license. Once an application is received, an inspection is conducted by the Enforcement Division to determine if the property meets code requirements.

How do you check to determine if a property is a rental?

You must submit a Maryland Public Information Act (MPIA) request to the Enforcement Division.

To whom do I report a rental property operating without a license?

You may report unlicensed rental properties to 311 and the Enforcement Division will investigate.

My neighbor is renting their basement and have 2 units, upstairs and downstairs. Is this legal?

Properties that have been converted without permits are illegal. Converted homes must have a valid Use and Occupancy Permit and meet current building/fire codes.

Can I put in a 2nd kitchen for my tenant?

All additions, improvements or alterations must be done by permit. To report such work without permits, please report to 311 and or call the Inspections Division at 301-883-3830 to conduct an investigation.

What is a Boarding House?

Definition: Boarding House, Lodging House – A residence building in which, as a home occupation and for compensation, lodging and meals are furnished to four (4) or more, but not exceeding nine (9), guests and containing not more than five (5) guest rooms.

Can an LLC owned home become a Group Home in a residential neighborhood?

Yes, the State of Maryland licenses and inspects group homes no matter who owns the property.

Can I have sheds on my property?

There are requirements of where sheds may be placed. Sheds exceeding 150 square feet require a permit. Sheds may not be used for dwellings. Any complaints of occupancy, extension cords for prolonged period of time, and other such complaints may be reported to 311 and Enforcement Division will investigate.

DPIE Newsletters

DPIE Under Construction Newsletter, January 2020