Common Ordinances S-Z

Ordinances You Should Know

This summary of selected Cleveland Heights ordinances includes those areas and issues that are most commonly encountered by citizens on a regular basis.

Satellite Dishes

Satellite dishes up to a meter in diameter are not subject to local regulations, but the City recommends not locating the dish in the front or side yard of any house or building or on the roof. Recommended location for satellite dishes up to a meter in size is in the rear yard, as long as they are well anchored and screened or landscaped, so as not to interfere with the neighbors' enjoyment of their own property. A conditional use permit is required for any dish larger than a meter before it can be installed.


Temporary signs can be displayed to express an opinion on an election, political issue or other subject; to notify the public of the availability of the premises for sale or viewing ('For Sale' or 'Open House'); and to notify the public of the location of a residential personal property sale ('garage' sale-see Garage & Estate Sales for sign specifics). One 'For Sale' sign is allowed and it can be displayed only on the premises which are for sale. In addition to the one 'For Sale' sign, one 'Garage Sale' and one 'Open House' sign may be displayed at the same premises. Signs are permitted inside windows, inside the glass portion of doors, and/or in yards. Yard signs must be supported by a solid structure, firmly anchored into the ground; hanging signs are not permitted. All yard signs must be placed parallel to the street adjoining the yard upon which they are placed and must be set back at least 20 feet from the nearest edge of the sidewalk.


All temporary signs must be removed or replaced within 45 days. Any temporary sign related to a specific event (primary, general or special election, sporting event, sale of house, etc.) shall be removed within five business days after the event has concluded. 'Open House' signs can be displayed only during the times the premises are actually open to the public for viewing. Regarding the removal of a 'For Sale' sign, the sale of a property is considered to be 'concluded' when the title transfers or when the property is withdrawn from the market, whichever comes first. Religious and other holiday lights and decorations containing no commercial message are exempt from the above regulations and shall be permitted during the appropriate time of year.


In addition, a brief statement relating to the physical safety and security of the occupants, such as 'Block Watch,' 'Beware of Dog,' or 'Protected by Electronic Security System,' may constitute one sign that is no larger than 175 square inches in area and positioned on the inside of a window, on the glass portion of a door, or in the front yard of a dwelling. No security sign that is placed within the front yard of a dwelling shall have heights, including the supporting stake or pole that exceeds three feet. Another sign of not more than 16 inches in area relating to the physical safety and security of the occupants can additionally be placed on the inside of a window or the glass portion of a door.

Smoke Detectors

Every dwelling unit shall have one approved smoke detector installed outside each sleeping area, in the immediate vicinity of the bedrooms, and an additional detector on each additional story of the family living unit, including basements and finished attics, but excluding unfinished attics and crawl spaces. In split-level homes, the installation of a smoke detector on an upper level is sufficient for next adjoining lower level unless there is a door between those levels in which case a smoke detector needs to be installed on each level. The Fire Department recommends U.L. or F.M. approved models.

Snow Removal

For safety's sake, residents and merchants should keep their walks free of snow, ice, and debris.


Certain trees-poplar, box elder, basswood or willow-are considered a public nuisance and will not be planted on any tree lawns. If any of these trees are found growing on private property close enough to a public place to be invasive, the owner of the private property will be notified in writing to remove the tree at his/her expense.

A permit is required in order to plant, prune or remove a tree on public property. If you want a tree planted on your tree lawn, call Forestry at 216-691-7300.

All trees standing on private property and having branches projecting into public streets or other public places must be trimmed by the owner or occupant so that the lowest branches of such trees will not come within nine feet of the ground where they overhang any public property or driveway. When the City deems any tree located on private property has become diseased and threatens to infect trees standing in any public place, or when a tree on private property is apt to fall in whole or in part across any public or private property because of decay or other condition, the owner or occupant of the private property will be ordered, in writing, to spray or otherwise treat the tree or to remove it. If the order is not complied with, the City is authorized to enter the private property and to spray or otherwise treat or remove the tree or infected/dangerous parts at the expense of the owner.

A - E | F - L | M - R | S - Z

For a complete list of Codified Ordinances, click here.