A Builders Code of Conduct
Builders are guests in an existing residential community. Builders are expected to conduct themselves as guests in an existing residential neighborhood. Existing neighbors have a right to the quiet enjoyment and use of their property. Builders are expected to operate within the confines of the ordinances and should make every reasonable effort to operate in the least disruptive fashion possible as to equipment operation, noise of operations, employee behavior, cleanliness of site and safety of site.
Builders should communicate with their neighbors explaining their proposed project, expected duration of construction time span, and names of contacts. Additionally, builders should attempt to determine if any problems could be avoided by determining if the adjoining property owner has any particular concerns or problems with the proposed project that could be remedied before the project starts. City staff will provide a monthly listing of newly issued permits on the city's web page and will make the site plans and exterior elevations available to the public at city hall pursuant to the public disclosure laws.
Builders need to manage the site so as to minimize safety risks to their neighbors and the public at large. Site management including controlling the material and equipment deliveries so as not to overload the site or the right-of-way is expected. Excavating for footings and foundations are expected to be timed so that construction follows as quickly as possible to minimize the safety risks of open unprotected excavations. Compliance with the city's rigid perimeter fencing requirements and controlled entry gate is expected. Making sure that walkways are kept open and usable is expected. Walkways leading to and from schools and public facilities require extra care to avoid even temporary closure during normal travel time. Placement of portable restroom facilities and solid waste disposal should be placed on the building site so as to minimize impact on neighboring property.
Builders are expected to familiarize themselves with the codes and follow them. The city will not tolerate ignorance of the laws. An aggressive enforcement team is in place to enforce the city ordinance for the protection of our citizens and neighboring property (public and private). The city recognizes that mistakes are made. If a mistake is make, own up to it as soon as it is known so that proper correction action can be approved by the city and the project may progress to completion.
Builders are to Exert Care
Builders are to exert extreme care in designing their project and constructing their improvements so as to avoid cutting cable, telephone, power lines, etc. Grading property either temporarily or permanently to avoid drainage problems for a neighbor. Care is to be exercised in grading and excavating so as to prevent damage to trees and shrubs on neighboring property and public right-of-way. Adequate provision for power and water are to be provided on site. No use of neighbor's services or city services will be allowed.
Builders are to Preserve and consider Their Surroundings
Builders are encouraged to preserve natural features on their property including trees and shrubbery. Builders are encouraged to design homes, which recognize how they fit into existing neighborhoods. Efforts to blend into existing neighborhoods are encouraged. Builders are encouraged to maintain as much permeable surface as possible to reduce storm water run-off.
Builders are Responsible for Damages
Builders are required to pay the costs of repairing any and all public improvements including curbs/gutters, sidewalks, streets, trees/shrubs, and public utilities. Builders shall promptly clean any debris that is spilled on public property during the course of construction activities.
Builders Have Rights Too!
Builders have the right to develop their property consistent with the laws of the City of Birmingham, Oakland County and State of Michigan. The community recognizes the right of builders to develop their property within the ordinance of the city, but demands that the construction activity occur in a manner which is the least disruptive to the neighborhood.
Remember that inconsiderate action on the part of just one builder may result in the passage of laws affecting all builders. Builders are encouraged to police themselves thus reducing the need for added laws and enforcement. Absentee management of building projects is the number one cause of problems leading to enforcement by the city.
*The use of the term Builder throughout the code of conduct includes the existing lot owner, general contractor and all subcontractors.