CHAPTER 1361

Housing Code

1361.01 Adoption of BOCA Code.
1361.02 Definitions.
1361.03 Minimum standards for basic equipment and facilities.
1361.04 Minimum standards for light, ventilation and heating.
1361.05 Minimum standards for safety from fire.
1361.06 Minimum standards for space, use and location.
1361.07 Minimum standards for safe and sanitary maintenance.
1361.08 Minimum standards for cooking equipment.
1361.09 Responsibilities of owners and occupants.
1361.10 Inspection of and access to dwellings.
1361.11 Notices and appeals.
1361.12 Abatement of violations.
1361.13 Conflicting provisions.
1361.14 Severability.
1361.15 Inspection.
1361.99 Penalty.

CROSS REFERENCES

Power to regulate building sanitation - see Ohio R.C. 715.29
Health Commissioner, duties of - see ADM. 141.03
Health, safety and sanitation - see GEN. OFF. Ch. 517
Trailers and trailer camps, safety and sanitary conditions - see BUS. REG. 775.02; P. & Z. Ch. 1149
Unsafe buildings - see BLDG. Ch. 1341


1361.01 ADOPTION OF BOCA CODE.
Pursuant to Ohio R.C. 731.231 the BOCA Basic Housing Code, 1970 edition, recommended by the Building Officials and Code Administrators, International, Inc. is hereby adopted save and except such portions as are hereinafter deleted, modified or amended.
(Ord. 644. Passed 11-16-72.)


1361.02 DEFINITIONS.
As used in this chapter, the following terms have the indicated meanings:

(a) "Basement" means a portion of any dwelling located partly underground but having less than half of its clear floor-to-ceiling height below the average grade of the adjoining ground.

(b) "Cellar" means a portion of any dwelling having half or more than half of its clear floor-to-ceiling height below the average grade of the adjoining ground.

(c) "Dwelling" means a building or structure which is wholly or partly used or intended to be used for living or sleeping by human occupants; provided that temporary housing as hereinafter defined shall not be regarded as a dwelling.

(d) "Dwelling unit" means a room or group of rooms located within a dwelling and forming a single habitable unit with facilities which are used or intended to be used for living, sleeping, cooking and eating.

(e) "Habitable room" means a room or enclosed floor space used or intended to be used for living, sleeping, cooking or eating purposes, excluding bathrooms, water closet compartments, laundries, foyers, pantries, communicating corridors, stairways, closets and storage spaces.

(f) "Multi-family dwelling" means any dwelling or part thereof containing three or more dwelling units.

(g) "Occupant" means any person, including an owner or operator, over one year of age living and sleeping in a dwelling unit or rooming unit.

(h) "Openable area" means the part of a window or door which is available for unobstructed ventilation, and which opens directly to the outdoors.

(i) "Operator" means any person having charge, care, management or control of any dwelling or part thereof, in which dwelling units or rooming units are let.

(j) "Owner" means any person who, alone, jointly or severally with others:

(1) Holds legal title to any dwelling or dwelling unit, with or without accompanying actual possession thereof; or

(2) Has charge, care or control of any dwelling or dwelling unit, as owner or agent of the owner, or as executor, executrix, administrator, administratrix, trustee or guardian of the estate of the owner. Any such person thus representing the actual owner shall be bound to comply with the provisions of this chapter, and of rules and regulations adopted pursuant thereto, to the same extent as if he were the owner.

(k) "Person" means an individual, firm, corporation, association or partnership.

(l) "Plumbing" or "plumbing fixtures" means water-heating facilities, water pipes, garbage disposals units, waste pipes, water closets, sinks, installed dishwashers, lavatories, bathtubs, shower baths, installed clothes-washing machines, catch basins, drains, vents and other similar supply fixtures, together with all connections to water, sewer or gas lines.

(m) "Premises" means a lot, plot or parcel of land including the buildings and structures thereon.

(n) "Extermination" means the control and elimination of insects, rodents or other pests by eliminating their harborage places; by removing or marking inaccessible materials that may serve as their food; by poisoning, spraying, fumigating, trapping; or by any other recognized and legal pest elimination methods approved by the Police Officer.

(o) "Public Officer" means the Health Commissioner of the Board of Health of the City, the Code Administrator, the Building Code Administrator, the Zoning Inspector, the Building Inspector or their authorized representative.
(Ord. 976. Passed 10-2-80.)

(p) "Approved" means in accordance with regulations established by the Board of Health.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.03 MINIMUM STANDARDS FOR BASIC EQUIPMENT AND FACILITIES.
No person shall occupy as owner-occupant or shall let to another for occupancy, any dwelling, rooming house, dwelling unit or rooming unit which does not comply with the following minimum standards for basic equipment and facilities:

(a) Every dwelling unit shall contain a room, separate from the habitable rooms, which affords privacy and which is equipped with a flush water closet and a lavatory basin;

(b) Every dwelling unit shall contain a room, separate from the habitable rooms, which affords privacy, to a person in the room, and which is equipped with a bathtub or shower;

(c) Every dwelling unit shall contain a kitchen sink;

(d) Every kitchen sink, lavatory basin and bathtub or shower, required by this chapter, shall be properly connected with both hot and cold water lines. The hot water lines shall be connected with supplied water-heating facilities which are capable of heating water to such a temperature as to permit an adequate amout of water to be drawn at every required kitchen sink, lavatory basin and bathtub or shower at a temperature of not less than 120 degrees Fahrenheit even when the dwelling heating facilities required by Section 1361.04(e) are not in operation;

(e) All plumbing fixtures required by this section shall be properly connected to both an approved water and sewerage system;

(f) Every dwelling unit shall have approved garbage and rubbish storage or disposal facilities. In every multi-family dwelling, such facilities shall be placed in an approved location; and

(g) No owner, operator or occupant shall cause any service, equipment or utility which is required by this chapter, to be removed, shut off or discontinued for any occupied dwelling let or occupied by him, except for such temporary interruption as may be necessary while actual repairs or alterations are in process or during temporary emergencies.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.04 MINIMUM STANDARDS FOR LIGHT, VENTILATION AND HEATING.
No person shall occupy as owner-occupant or shall let to another for occupancy, any dwelling, rooming house, dwelling unit or rooming unit which does not comply with the following minimum standards for light, ventilation and heating:

(a) Every habitable room shall have a window or skylight opening directly to the outside. The total area of such window shall not be less than ten percent of such room. Whenever the only window in a room is a skylight-type window in the top of such room, the total window area of such skylight shall equal at least fifteen percent of the total floor area of such room. All windows and skylights shall be enclosed with glass and shall be provided with suitable hardware and sash cords and made to open to at least forty-five percent of the minimum window area size or minimum skylight-type window, except where there is supplied some other device affording adequate ventilation and approved by the Public Officer. Every dwelling, habitable room and hall shall be equipped with a safe, artificial lighting service, and all electrical wiring, outlets and fixtures thereof shall be installed and maintained in accordance with the provisions of local municipal ordinances and statutes of the State.

(b) Every bathroom and water closet compartment shall have at least one window facing the outdoors and having a minimum openable area of four percent of the floor area of such room, except where there is supplied some other device approved by the Board of Health to afford adequate ventilation.

(c) Every laundry room shall have a minimum openable area of at least two square feet, except where there is supplied some other device approved by the Board of Health as affording adequate ventilation.

(d) Every dwelling shall be supplied with electricity, within such dwelling as follows:

(1) Every habitable room shall contain at least two separate floor or wall-type electric convenience outlets, or one such convenience outlet and one supplied ceiling-type electric light fixture;

(2) Every water closet compartment, bathroom, laundry room, furnace room and public hall shall contain at least one supplied ceiling or wall-type electric light fixture; and

(3) Every outlet and fixture shall be properly installed and maintained in good and safe working condition.

(e) Every dwelling shall have heating facilities which are capable of safely and adequately heating all habitable rooms, bathrooms and water closet compartments within its wall to a temperature of at least seventy degrees Fahrenheit at a location to be established by the Board of Health, under ordinary minimum winter conditions.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.05 MINIMUM STANDARDS FOR SAFETY FROM FIRE.
No person shall occupy as owner-tenant or shall let to another for occupancy any dwelling, rooming house, dwelling unit or rooming unit which does not comply with the following minimum standards for safety from fire:

(a) No dwelling unit or rooming unit shall be located within a building containing any establishment which handles, dispenses or stores flammable liquids in any quantity which endangers the lives of the occupants;

(b) Every dwelling unit and every rooming unit shall have a safe, unobstructed means of egress leading to a safe and open space at ground level;

(c) Every hallway, stairway, corridor, exit, fire escape door and other means of egress shall be kept clear at all times.

(d) Storage rooms and storage lockers shall not be used for storage of junk, rubbish or waste;

(e) Closets or storage areas beneath stairways are prohibited in any multi-family dwelling or any rooming house; and

(f) There shall be at least two means of egress available from each story of every multi-family dwelling and every rooming house, if the dwelling is four or more stories in height or is three stories in height and has at least five habitable rooms on the third story. A basement used as a dwelling unit shall not count as a story for the purposes of this section.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.06 MINIMUM STANDARDS FOR SPACE, USE AND LOCATION.
No person shall occupy as owner-occupant or shall let to another for occupancy any dwelling, rooming house, dwelling unit or rooming unit which does not comply with the following minimum standards for space, use and location:

(a) Every dwelling unit shall contain at least 150 square feet of habitable floor area for the first occupant; at least 100 square feet of additional habitable floor area for each of the next three occupants; and at least seventy-five square feet of additional habitable floor area for each additional occupant.

(b) In every dwelling unit and in every rooming unit, every room occupied for sleeping purposes by one occupant shall contain at least seventy square feet of floor area, and every room occupied for sleeping purposes by more than one occupant shall contain at least fifty square feet of floor area for each occupant twelve years of age and over, and at least thirty-five square feet of floor area for each occupant under twelve years of age.

(c) Floor area shall be calculated on the basis of habitable room area. However, closet area and hall area within the dwelling unit, where provided, may count for not more than ten percent of the required habitable floor area. At least one-half of the floor area of every habitable room shall have a ceiling height of at least seven feet; and the floor area of any part of any room where the ceiling is less than five feet shall not be considered as part of the floor area in computing the total floor area of the room to determine maximum permissible occupancy.

(d) For the purpose of this section, a person under one year of age shall not be counted as an occupant.

(e) No dwelling or dwelling unit containing two or more sleeping rooms shall have such room arrangements that access to a sleeping room can be had only by going through a bathroom or water closet compartment.

(f) No sleeping room shall be occupied by more than two adults, except that one child under eight years of age in addition to two adults may be permitted, and rooms occupied by persons of the same sex or by children under twelve years of age may be occupied by more than two persons, where space permits.

(g) No cellar shall be used as a habitable room or dwelling unit.

(h) No basement shall be used as a habitable room or dwelling unit unless:

(1) The floors and walls are substantially water-tight;

(2) The total window area, total openable area and ceiling height are in accordance with this chapter; and

(3) The required minimum window area of every habitable room is entirely above the grade of the ground adjoining such window area, not including stairwells or accessways.

(i) No owner or occupant of a dwelling shall permit the use of any room for sleeping purposes which is commonly known as the kitchen and/or any room that is used for the cooking and preparing of food and/or serving and consumption of food.

(j) No owner or occupant shall permit the use of any room for sleeping purposes which is used as a storage closet, utility or work room and/or any hallway, passageway or foyer.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.07 MINIMUM STANDARDS FOR SAFE AND SANITARY MAINTENANCE.
No person shall occupy as owner-occupant or shall let to another for occupancy any dwelling, rooming house, dwelling unit or rooming unit which does not comply with the following minimum standards for safe and sanitary maintenance:

(a) Every foundation, exterior wall and exterior roof shall be substantially weather-tight, watertight and rodent-proof; shall be kept in sound condition and good repair; and shall be safe to use and capable of supporting the load which normal use may cause to be placed thereon.

(b) Every floor, interior wall and ceiling shall be substantially rodent-proof; shall be kept in sound condition and good repair; and shall be safe to use and capable of supporting the load which normal use may cause to be placed thereon.

(c) Every window, exterior door and basement or cellar door and hatchway shall be substantially weathertight, watertight and rodent-proof, and shall be kept in sound working condition and good repair.

(d) Every inside and outside stair, porch and any appurtenance thereto shall be safe to use and capable of supporting the load that normal use may cause to be placed thereon, and shall be kept in sound condition and good repair.

(e) Every plumbing fixture shall be properly installed and maintained in sanitary working condition, free from defects, leaks and obstructions and in accordance with the Plumbing Code for the City.

(f) Every water closet compartment shall be constructed and maintained so as to be substantially impervious to water and so as to permit such floor to be easily kept in a clean and sanitary condition.

(g) Every supplied facility, piece of equipment or utility which is required under this chapter, and every chimney and smokepipe, shall be so constructed and installed that it will function safely and effectively and shall be maintained in sound working condition.

(h) Every yard shall be properly graded to obtain thorough drainage and to prevent the accumulation of stagnant water.

(i) During that portion of each year when, as determined by the Board of health, it is necessary for protection against mosquitoes, flies and other insects, every door opening directly from any dwelling to outdoor space shall be supplied with a screen together with a self-closing device in good working condition. In each room at least one window or other device with openings to outdoor space, used or intended to be used for ventilation shall likewise be provided with a screen. However, such screen shall not be required during such period in rooms deemed by the Public Officer to be located high enough as to be free from such insects, and in rooms located in areas of the City which are deemed by the Public Officer to have so few insects as to render screens unnecessary.

(j) Every basement or cellar window used or intended to be used for ventilation, and every other opening to a basement or cellar which might provide an entry for rodents, shall be supplied with a screen or other device which will effectively prevent their entrance.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.08 MINIMUM STANDARDS FOR COOKING EQUIPMENT.
No owner, operator or occupant shall furnish or use any cooking equipment which does not comply with the following minimum standards:

(a) Every piece of cooking equipment shall be so constructed and installed that it will function safely and effectively and shall be maintained in sound working condition; and

(b) Portable cooking equipment employing a flame and the use of gasoline as fuel for cooking is prohibited.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.09 RESPONSIBILITIES OF OWNERS AND OCCUPANTS.

(a) Every occupant of a dwelling, dwelling unit or rooming unit shall maintain in a clean and sanitary condition that part of the dwelling, dwelling unit and yard which he occupies and controls.

(b) Every owner or operator of a two-family dwelling, multi-family dwelling or rooming house shall maintain in a clean and sanitary condition the shared or public areas of the dwelling and yard.

(c) Every occupant of a dwelling or dwelling unit shall dispose of all rubbish, ashes, garbage and other organic waste in a clean and sanitary manner by placing it in approved storage or disposal facilities which are safe and sanitary. Every occupant shall provide such facilities and shall maintain them in a clean and sanitary manner. The owner or operator of a multi-family dwelling shall furnish common storage or disposal facilities, and shall be responsible for the clean and sanitary maintenance of such facilities. Every owner or operator of every rooming house shall dispose of all rubbish in a clean and sanitary manner by placing it in approved storage or disposal facilities.

(d) Every occupant of a dwelling containing a single dwelling unit shall be responsible for the extermination of any insects, rodents or other pests in the dwelling or yard. In a two-family dwelling or a multi-family dwelling the occupant shall be responsible for such extermination whenever his dwelling unit is the only one infested. When, however, infestation is caused by failure of the owner or operator to maintain the dwelling in a rodent-proof or substantial insect-proof condition, extermination shall be the responsiblity of the owner or operator.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)

(e) Every owner or operator shall be responsible for extermination of any insects, rodents or other pests whenever infestation exists in the dwelling units in any dwelling or in the shared or public area of any two-family dwelling or any multi-family dwelling.


If after ninety days an inspection by an Health Department shows no change in infestation in the dwelling then a professional exterminator must be called in.

(f) Every owner or operator of a rooming house shall be responsible for the extermination of any insects, rodents or other pests in the rooming house or yard.


If after ninety days an inspection by the Health Department shows no change in infestation in the dwelling then a professional exterminator must be called in.

(g) Every occupant of a dwelling unit shall keep all plumbing fixtures in the unit in a clean and sanitary condition and shall be responsible for the exercise of reasonable care in their proper use and operation in accordance with Chapter 1305.
(Ord. 1180. Passed 8-7-86.)

(h) Every occupant of a dwelling unit shall be responsible for hanging and removing all screens required for his dwelling unit by this chapter except where the owner or operator has agreed to supply such services.

(i) Every owner or operator of a two-family dwelling or multi-family dwelling shall be responsible for hanging and removing all screens required by this chapter for windows and doors opening to outdoor space from shared or public areas.

(j) During that time of the year when it is necessary, as determined by regulations issued by the Board of Health, every owner or operator of every two-family dwelling, multi-family dwelling and rooming house shall supply adequate heat to every habitable room therein, except where there are separate facilities for each dwelling unit which are under the sole control of the occupant of such dwelling unit.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.10 INSPECTION OF AND ACCESS TO DWELLINGS.
The Public Officer is hereby authorized and directed to make inspections to determine compliance with this chapter. For this purpose, he is authorized, upon showing adequate identification, to enter and examine any dwelling, yard or part of either at all reasonable times, and every owner, operator or occupant shall provide time with free access to such dwelling or yard.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.11 NOTICES AND APPEALS.

(a) If a preliminary investigation shall disclose to the Public Officer that there exists a violation of any provision of this chapter, he shall serve written notice to such violation upon the violator. The notice shall specify the violation which exists, a reasonable time for compliance and shall contain a notice that a hearing will be held before the Public Officer at a place therein fixed, not less than ten days or more than thirty days after the serving of such notice.

(b) The owner, or any other party of interest affected by the violation, may appeal to the Board of Health for a review of the decision of the Public Officer in accordance with the procedures prescribed by the Board of Health, except as provided in subsection (e) herein. Compliance with the notice of violation shall not be required when an appeal is pending before the Board of Health or a court.

(c) The Board of Health may modify any notice so as to authorize a variance from the terms of this chapter when, because of special conditions, undue hardship would result from literal enforcement, and when such variance substantially meets the spirit of this chapter.

(d) After the expiration of the time for compliance as stated on the notice of violation, a reinspection shall be made to determine compliance. If the violation has not been corrected and no appeal is pending, the Public Officer shall order the violation corrected as specified in Section 1361.12, or shall institute prosecution for the violation, or both. However, the Board of Health may grant a reasonable extension of time for compliance in cases of hardship.

(e) Whenever the Public Officer finds that there exists any violation of this chapter which creates an emergency requiring immediate correction to protect the health or safety of any occupant of a dwelling or the public, he may issue a notice of violation stating the facts which constitute the emergency and requiring the necessary action to be taken immediately. Any person to whom such notice is directed shall comply immediately, even though an appeal is taken to the Board of Health. Any person aggrieved by such notice of violation may appeal to the Board of Health as provided in subsection (b) hereof. The Board of Health shall give priority to such appeal.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.12 ABATEMENT OF VIOLATIONS.

(a) When upon re-examination after the expiration of the time for compliance, the Public Officer finds that the violation has not been corrected then he is authorized to cause such dwelling to be repaired, altered or improved or to be vacated or closed in accordance with Ohio R.C. 715.26 and 715.26.1, and to certify the costs therefor as a lien against the premises.
(Ord. 1180. Passed 8-7-86.)

(b) Whenever the Public Officer find that any dwelling constitutes a serious hazard to the health or safety of the occupants or to the public because it is dilapidated, unsanitary, vermin-infested or lacking in the facilities required by this chapter, he shall designate such dwelling unfit for human habitation and shall cause to be posted on the main entrance of any dwelling so closed, a placard with the following words: "This building is unfit for human habitation; the use or occupancy of this building for human habitation is prohibited and unlawful". If the owner fails to comply with an order to remove or demolish the dwelling, the Public Officer may cause such dwelling to be removed or demolished.

(c) The amount of the cost of such repairs, alterations, improvements or vacating and closing, or removal or demolition, when done by the Public Officer, shall be a municipal lien against the real property upon which such cost was incurred. If the dwelling is removed or demolished by the Public Officer, he shall sell the materials of such dwelling and shall credit the proceeds of such against the cost of the removal or demolition, and any balance remaining shall be deposited in the City Treasury by the Public Officer or any other public authority, and shall be secured in such manner as may be directed by such Public Officer or any other public authority, and shall be disbursed by such Public Officer or any other public authority to the persons found to be entitled thereto by final order or decree of such Public Officer or any other public authority. However, nothing in this section shall be construed to impair or limit in any way the power of the municipality to define and declare nuisances and to cause their removal or abatement by summary proceedings or otherwise.

(d) Complaints or orders issued by the Public Officer, pursuant to this chapter, shall be served upon persons either personally or by registered mail, but if the whereabouts of such persons in unknown, and the same cannot be ascertained by the Public Officer in the exercise of reasonable diligence, the Public Officer shall make an affidavit to that effect, and the serving of such complaint or order upon such persons may be made by publishing the same once each week for two consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the City. A copy of such complaint or order shall be posted in a conspicuous place on the premises affected by the complaint or order. A copy of such complaint or order shall also be duly recorded or lodged for record with the County Clerk.

(e) Any person affected by an order issued by the Public Officer may petition the Common Pleas Court to relief.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.13 CONFLICTING PROVISIONS.
Where a provision of this chapter is found to be in conflict with the BOCA Basic Housing Code, 1970 edition, or with any other building or zoning ordinance, or with any other ordinance of the City existing on the effective date of this section, or with any regulation issued under the authority of such ordinances, the provision which establishes the higher standard for the protection of health, safety and welfare shall prevail.
(Ord. 644. Passed 11-16-72.)


1361.14 SEVERABILITY.
The provision of this chapter are severable, and if any provision of this chapter or the application of any provision of particular circumstances are held to be unconstitutional, the remaining provisions of this chapter or their application in other circumstances, shall in no way be affected or impaired.
(Ord. 368. Passed 4-6-67.)


1361.15 INSPECTION.

(a) Every owner of real estate which is not occupied by such owner or a member of his immediate family for use as their personal dwelling, but which is occupied by others as a place of habitation and dwelling shall be deemed an owner of rental property. Every owner of rental property shall be required to annually file in the office of the City Health Director a registration form which shall contain the following information:

(1) The name and mailing address of the owner;

(2) The location and mailing address for each unit of rental property within the City;

(3) The number of rental units within each structure; and

(4) The name of the individuals occupying each rental unit.

(b) No owner of rental property shall fail to file the registration form prescribed in subsection (a) hereof.

(c) No owner of rental property shall shall rent, or allow any person to enter into and dwell in any rental property owned by him until the owner has first notified the City Health Department and the premises have been inspected by the Public Officers in accordance with Section 1361.10, and a certificate of occupancy has been tendered.

(d) No certificate of occupancy shall be issued to any owner of rental property unless all City utility service (water and garbage) is paid for that unit of rental property which is proposed to be rented, sold or occupied by others.

(e) No realtor shall erect any signs on any rental property in the City advertising the same for rent or sale which has been posted by the Public Officer "Unfit for Human Habitation" unless and until such realtor obtains from the Public Officer a list of those items which must be complied with by the owner, occupant or proposed purchaser.
(Ord. 1180. Passed 8-7-86.)


1361.99 PENALTY.
Whoever violates any provision of this chapter is guilty of a minor misdemeanor. Each day's violation or repeated violation by the same person shall constitute a separate offense punishable by a fine of not less than one hundred dollars ($100.00)
(Ord. 1180. Passed 8-7-86.)


Home Page Ordinance Index