Residential Property FAQ

Can I expand my driveway using rock or gravel instead of asphalt?

Driveway areas used for the access and parking of vehicles are required by the City to be asphalt, Portland cement concrete, bituminous concrete, blacktop or equivalent paving.  A driveway permit is required for driveway replacement or expansion. See Sections 17.13 and 21.301.06 of the City Code for further information.

Can I park my truck on my lot?

Motor vehicle classification and regulations are contained in Section 21.301.06(m) of the Code for Non-residential vehicles.

How do I find my property lines?

The City of Bloomington does not provide a service to survey the property or establish property lines.  Property lines may be located by:

  1. Contacting the City Planning Division to determine whether the City may have as-built survey information for your property.  A majority of the records are pre-built surveys which can help identify the lot line;
  2. Finding your "corner pins" and verifying that they are correct (this may require a surveyor); or
  3. Contacting a private land surveyor. A survey is required for exact placement and for all variance requests.  To remain objective, city staff cannot recommend any one survey company over another.

How do I get setback information for my property?

Most setback information is contained in Section 21.301.02 of the City Code. Generally speaking, most single-family residential structures must be setback at least 30 feet from the front yard lot line, 30 feet back from the rear yard lot line, and 10 feet back from the side lot lines. Side yard setbacks increase where a dwelling in greater than 24 feet in height.  Side yards adjacent to a street frontage generally must have a 30 foot yard. Front, side, and rear setbacks are determined by house placement/orientation and are kept on file by the Planning Division.

How do I get zoning information for my property?

The current zoning map and our interactive zoning tool are available online. Zoning maps are also available for purchase. You may also call the Planning Division for more information.

I would like to operate a business in my home. Do I need a permit?

The City of Bloomington allows a variety of home occupations as permitted accessory uses in many zoning districts.  However, retail, manufacturing, or repair, are generally not permissible.  To learn about permitted uses and home occupation/business performance standards, see Section 21.302.13 of the City Code.

Contact the Planning Division at (952) 563-8920 or for more information.

I want to put an addition/deck/garage on my home. Do I need a permit? What steps do I have to take?

City Code Sections 19.08 (decks), Section 21.301.02, and Section 21.301.19 regulate the number, size, location and appearance of all buildings accessory to and detached from principal buildings within the City.  These regulations generally apply to all detached structures, including but not limited to garages, carports, storage buildings, gazebos, screen houses, sheds, play houses and similar structures.  Covered but open porches are governed by Section 19.08 (scroll down to (d)(14)).

Contact the Planning Division at (952) 563-8920 or for more information.

Additional information and regulations for additions to your house, decks, and fences can also be obtained through the City's Building and Inspections handouts page.

Where can I store my boat/ trailer/ RV?

The City has determined that excessively large vehicles or an excessive number of vehicles at one house has a negative effect on the residential quality of neighborhoods. Section 21.301.13 of the City Code provides a clear and balanced set of rules for the parking, storage and number of recreational vehicles.

Recreational Vehicle Information Sheet (handout currently being revised)

Where can I store my firewood?

Section 19.50.01 of the City Code regulates for the storage of firewood. Firewood must be stored in stacks, not to exceed six feet, be kept a minimum of eight inches above the ground, 15 feet away from property lines, and out of the front yard. Following these regulations will help maintain a safe and orderly City.

City code and charter