Vacant property registration ordinance in effect in Berkeley Heights, NJ

Berkeley Heights, NJ: A recently passed vacant property registration ordinance is in effect for the City.


The ordinance states that an owner of a vacant property has 30 days to file registration, from the date of the property becoming vacant; or 30 days to file registration if taking ownership of a vacant property; or 10 days to file registration if the City sends notice to the owner, notifying the property is considered vacant and therefore requires registration.


The fees for initial registration and renewals are: initial registration $500; 1st renewal $1,500; 2nd renewal $3,000; 3rd and subsequent renewals $5,000 per year. Registration information must include current contact information for owners and persons in charge of the property.


Annual renewal of any vacant property is due by Jan. 1, with initial registration fees prorated for initial registration statements received for properties which become vacant on or after March 1 of the given year.


Owners must also submit a mid-year update each year, no later than Jul. 1 and no earlier than Jun. 1, certifying there have been no changes to their registration information, and otherwise any change to any information involving previously submitted information is due within 10 days of those changes.


Vacant homes must be secured and kept in line with City Code during the duration of their vacancy, and owners must provide access to a designated official to conduct an exterior and interior inspection of the property each year.


Failure to adhere to any part of the ordinance can be subject to a fine of up to $2,000 per violation, with each day a violation continues constituting a new offense and additional fine.




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