Part 17 Housing Code - Title 1 Property Regulations

  1. Chapter 1701 General Provisions
  2. Chapter 1703 General Property Regulations
  3. Chapter 1705 Lawn and Property
  4. Chapter 1707 Swimming Pools, Spas, and Hot Tubs
  5. Chapter 1709 Health and Sanitation
  6. Chapter 1711 Light and Ventilation
  7. Chapter 1713 Occupancy Limitations
  8. Chapter 1715 Plumbing Facilities and Fixtures
  9. Chapter 1717 Mechanical and Electrical
  10. Chapter 1719 Fire Safety
  11. Chapter 1721 Portable Temporary Units

Chapter 1701 General Provisions

Download or print chapter

Section 1701.01 Purpose and Scope 

(a) Purpose.  The purpose of this Code is to ensure public health, safety, and welfare insofar as they are affected by the continued occupancy and maintenance of structures and premises. The provisions of this Code shall govern the minimum conditions and the responsibilities of persons for maintenance of structures, equipment, and exterior property. Existing structures and premises that do not comply with these provisions shall be altered or repaired to provide a minimum level of health and safety as required herein. Repairs, alterations, and additions to, and change of occupancy in, existing buildings shall comply with the applicable Codes of the City of North Canton.

(b) Scope.  The provisions of this Code shall apply to all existing residential and nonresidential structures and all existing premises and constitute the minimum requirements and standards for premises, structures, equipment, and facilities for light, ventilation, space, heating, sanitation, protection from the elements, a reasonable level of safety from fire and other hazards, and for a reasonable level of sanitary maintenance; the responsibility of owners, an owner’s authorized agent, operators and occupants; the occupancy of existing structures and premises, and for administration, enforcement, and penalties.

Section 1701.02 Conflict

(a) Where there is a conflict between a general requirement and a specific requirement of this Code, the specific requirement shall govern. Where differences occur between provisions of this Code and the referenced standards, the provisions of this Code shall apply. Where, in a specific case, different sections of this Code specify different requirements, the most restrictive provision shall govern.

(b) The requirements of this Code are not intended to provide the basis for removal or abrogation of fire protection and safety systems and devices in existing structures.

Section 1701.03 Requirements not Covered by Code

Requirements necessary for the strength, stability, or proper operation of an existing fixture, structure, or equipment, or for the public safety, health, and general welfare, not specifically covered by this Code, shall be determined by the code official.

Section 1701.04 Application of Other Codes

Repairs, additions, or alterations to a structure, or changes of occupancy, shall be done in accordance with the procedures and provisions of the Ohio Building Code, Ohio Fire Code, Ohio Fuel Gas Code, Ohio Mechanical Code, Residential Code of Ohio, Ohio Plumbing Code and NFPA 70. Nothing in this Code shall be construed to cancel, modify, or set aside any provision of laws, rules, and regulations in force in the City of North Canton.

Section 1701.05 Application to Historic Buildings 

The provisions of this Code shall not be mandatory for existing buildings or structures designated as historic buildings where such buildings or structures are judged by the Code official to be safe and in the public interest of health, safety, and welfare.

Section 1701.06 Responsibility for Real Property 

(a) The owner of any premises within the City shall maintain the structures, equipment, and exterior property thereof in compliance with the requirements of this Code and Parts 7, 9, 11, 13, and 15, of the North Canton Codified Ordinances, except that occupants of a dwelling unit, rooming unit or housekeeping unit are responsible for keeping in a clean, sanitary, and safe condition that part of the dwelling unit, rooming unit, housekeeping unit, or premises they occupy and control, and as otherwise provided for in this Code.

(1) The components of a structure and equipment therein shall be maintained in good repair, structurally sound, and in a sanitary condition.

(2) The exterior of a structure shall be maintained in good repair, structurally sound, and sanitary so as not to pose a threat to public health, safety, or welfare.

(3) The interior of a structure and equipment therein shall be maintained in good repair, structurally sound, and in a sanitary condition.

(4) Every owner of a structure containing a rooming house, housekeeping units, a hotel, a dormitory, two or more dwelling units, or two or more nonresidential occupancies, shall maintain, in a clean and sanitary condition, the shared or public areas of the structure and exterior property.

(5) A person shall not occupy as owner-occupant or permit another person to occupy premises that are not in a sanitary and safe condition and that do not comply with the requirements of this chapter.

(b) Except as otherwise specified herein, the owner or the owner’s authorized agent shall be responsible for the maintenance of buildings, structures, and premises.

(1) Equipment, systems, devices, and safeguards required by this Code or a previous regulation or code under which the structure or premises was constructed, altered, or repaired shall be maintained in good working order.

(2) Repairs, maintenance work, alterations, or installations that are caused directly or indirectly by the enforcement of this Code shall be executed and installed in a workmanlike manner and installed in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.

(3) An owner, owner’s authorized agent, operator, or occupant shall not cause any service, facility, equipment, or utility that is required under this Code to be removed from, shut off from, or discontinued for any occupied dwelling, except for such temporary interruption as necessary while repairs or alterations are in progress.

Section 1701.07 Definition of Terms 

(a) As used in this Code, the following words and phrases are defined as follows, except as otherwise provided.

(1) “Anchored” means secured in a manner that provides positive connection.

(2) “Approved” means acceptable to the Code official.

(3) “Basement” means that portion of a building that is partly or completely below grade.

(4) “Bathroom” means a room containing plumbing fixtures including a bathtub or shower.

(5) “Bedroom” means a room or space used, or intended to be used, for sleeping purposes in either a dwelling or sleeping unit.

(6) “Review Board” means the North Canton Property Maintenance Review Board.

(7)  “Code official” means the City official who is charged with the administration and enforcement of this Code, or any duly authorized representative.

(8) “Condemn” means to adjudge unfit for occupancy.

(9) “Cost of Such Demolition or Emergency Repairs” means the actual costs of the demolition or repair of the structure less revenues obtained if salvage was conducted prior to demolition or repair. Costs shall include, but are not limited to, expenses incurred or necessitated related to demolition or emergency repairs, such as asbestos survey and abatement if necessary; costs of inspectors, testing agencies or experts retained relative to the demolition or emergency repairs; costs of testing; surveys for other materials that are controlled or regulated from being dumped in a landfill; title searches; mailing(s); postings; recording; and attorney fees expended for recovering of the cost of emergency repairs or to obtain or enforce an order of demolition made by a Code official, the governing body, or the Review Board.

(10) “Dangerous Tree” means a public tree or private tree or any portion thereof which is determined by the Code Official or designee to create a health or safety risk to the public because the tree is dead or dying, has an infectious disease or insect problem, is injured beyond restoration, is in danger of falling, is so close to an existing or proposed structure as to endanger such structure, creates unsafe visual clearance, interferes with public utility services or communications facility services, or poses other risks identified by the Code Official.

(11)“Detached” means a structural element that is physically disconnected from another and that connection is necessary to provide a positive connection.

(12) “Deterioration” means to weaken, disintegrate, corrode, rust or decay and lose effectiveness.

(13) “Dwelling Unit” means a single unit providing complete, independent living facilities for one or more persons, including permanent provisions for living, sleeping, eating, cooking, and sanitation.

(14) “Easement” means that portion of land or property reserved for present or future use by a person or agency other than the legal fee owner(s) of the property. The easement shall be permitted to be for use under, on, or above said lot or lots.

(15) “Equipment Support” means those structural members or assemblies of members or manufactured elements, including braces, frames, lugs, snuggers, hangers, or saddles, that transmit gravity load, lateral load and operating load between the equipment and the structure.

(16) “Exterior Property” means the open space on the premises and on adjoining property under the control of owners or operators of such premises.

(17) “Family” means one or more person related by blood, marriage, or adoption who live together in one dwelling unit and maintain a common household; or not more than three (3) persons not related by blood, marriage, or adoption who live together in one dwelling unit and maintain a common household.

(18) “Garbage” means animal or vegetable waste resulting from the handling, preparation, cooking, and/or consumption of food.

(19) “Graffiti” means any unauthorized inscription, design, word, figure or mark of any type, drawn, marked, painted, etched, scratched or written upon any property located within the City, which is visible from a public right-of-way or other public or quasi-public location located within the City.

(20) “Guard” means a building component or a system of building components located at or near the open sides of elevated walking surfaces that minimizes the possibility of a fall from the walking surface to a lower level.

(21) “Habitable Space” means space in a structure for living, sleeping, eating or cooking. Bathrooms, toilet rooms, closets, halls, storage or utility spaces, and similar areas are not considered habitable spaces.

(22) “Historic Building” means any building or structure that is one or more of the following:

(A) Listed or certified as eligible for listing, by the State Historic Preservation Officer or the Keeper of the National Register of Historic Places, in the National Register of Historic Places.

(B) Designated as historic under an applicable state or local law.

(C) Certified as a contributing resource within a National Register or state or locally designated historic district.

(23) “Housekeeping Unit” means a room or group of rooms forming a single habitable space equipped and intended to be used for living, sleeping, cooking, and eating that does not contain, within such a unit, a toilet, lavatory, and bathtub or shower.

(24) “Imminent Danger” means a condition that could cause serious or life-threatening injury or death at any time.

(25) “Infestation” means the presence, within or contiguous to a structure or premises, of insects, rodents, vermin or other pests.

(26) “Inoperable Motor Vehicle” means a vehicle that cannot be driven upon the public streets for reason including but not limited to being unlicensed, wrecked, abandoned, in a state of disrepair, or incapable of being moved under its own power.

(27) “Labeled” means equipment, materials, or products to which have been affixed a label, seal, symbol, or other identifying mark of a nationally recognized testing laboratory, approved agency, or other organization concerned with product evaluation that maintains periodic inspection of the production of the above-labeled items and whose labeling indicates either that the equipment, material, or product meets identified standards or has been tested and found suitable for a specified purpose.

(28) “Let for Occupancy” or “Let” means to permit, provide, or offer possession or occupancy of a dwelling, dwelling unit, rooming unit, building, premise, or structure by a person who is or is not the legal owner of record thereof, pursuant to a written or unwritten lease, agreement, or license, or pursuant to a recorded or unrecorded agreement of contract for the sale of land.

(29) “Neglect” means the lack of proper maintenance for a building or structure.

(30) “Noxious Weeds”   means those plants defined as “Prohibited Noxious Weeds” in Section 901-5-37-01 of the Ohio Administrative Code and any of the following Golden Road, Poison Hemlock, Poison Ivy, Poison Oak, Ragweed, Stinging Nettle, and other plants capable of causing skin reactions upon contact or producing severe respiratory reactions.

(31) “Occupancy” means the purpose for which a building or portion thereof is utilized or occupied.

(32) “Occupant” means any individual living or sleeping in a building, or having possession of a space within a building.

(33) “Openable Area” means that part of a window, skylight, or door which is available for unobstructed ventilation and which opens directly to the outdoors.

(34) “Operator” means any person who has charge, care, or control of a structure or premises that is let or offered for occupancy.

(35) “Owner” means any person, agent, operator, firm, or corporation having legal or equitable interest in the property; or recorded in the official records of the state, county or municipality as holding title to the property; or otherwise having control of the property, including the guardian of the estate of any such person, and the executor or administrator of the estate of such person if ordered to take possession of real property by a court.

(36) “Person” means an individual, corporation, partnership, or any other group acting as a unit.

(37) “Pest Elimination” means the control and elimination of insects, rodents, or other pests by eliminating their harborage places; by removing or making inaccessible materials that serve as their food or water; or by other approved pest elimination methods.

(38) “Portable Temporary Storage Unit” means any container, storage unit, or container designed for temporary storage of personal property and transported to the property and left on-site.  Such unit is located outside an enclosed building and is not an approved accessory building or shed.

(39) “Premises” means a lot, plot, parcel of land, easement or public way, including any structures thereon.

(40) “Public Nuisance” means any condition caused or permitted to exist in violation of any of the provisions of this code, or its adopted codes, shall be deemed a public nuisance and may be abated by the city. This shall be construed to place an affirmative duty on property owners and occupants to maintain their property in conformity with all applicable codes. The city shall have the power to require property owners and occupants to bring their property into compliance with applicable codes, regardless of whether or not the building is occupied.

(41) “Public Way” means any street, alley, or other parcel of land that:

(A) is open to the outside air;

(B) leads to a street;

(C) has been deeded, dedicated or otherwise permanently appropriated to the public for public use; and

(D) has a clear width and height of not less than ten (10) feet.

(42) “Rank Vegetation” is any growth of weeds or grass reaching a height of eight inches or more on improved property or twelve inches or more upon unimproved property.

(43) “Rooming House” means a building arranged or occupied for lodging, with or without meals, for compensation and not occupied as a one- or two-family dwelling.

(44) “Rooming Unit” means any room or group of rooms forming a single habitable unit occupied or intended to be occupied for sleeping or living, but not for cooking purposes.

(45) “Rubbish” means combustible and noncombustible waste materials, except garbage; the term shall include the residue from the burning of wood, coal, coke, and other combustible materials, paper, rags, cartons, boxes, wood, excelsior, rubber, leather, tree branches, yard trimmings, tin cans, metals, mineral matter, glass, crockery, dust, used automobile parts and accessories, and other similar materials.

(46) “Sleeping Unit” means a room or space in which people sleep, which can also include permanent provisions for living, eating and either sanitation or kitchen facilities, but not both. Such rooms and spaces that are also part of a dwelling unit are not sleeping units.

(47) “Strict Liability Offense” means an offense in which the prosecution in a legal proceeding is not required to prove criminal intent as a part of its case. It is enough to prove that the defendant either performed an act which was prohibited, or failed to perform an act which the defendant was legally required to perform.

(48) “Structure” means that which is built or constructed.

(49) “Tenant” means a person, corporation, partnership, or group, whether or not the legal owner of record, occupying a building or portion thereof as a unit.

(50) “Toilet Room” means a room containing a water closet or urinal but not a bathtub or shower.

(51) “Ultimate Deformation” means the deformation at which failure occurs and that shall be deemed to occur if the sustainable load reduces to 80 percent or less of the maximum strength.

(52) “Vacant Building” means a building which is not occupied by its owner, lessee or other person in lawful possession, or at which substantially all lawful business operations or residential occupancy has ceased, or which is substantially devoid of content.

(53) “Ventilation” means the natural or mechanical process of supplying conditioned or unconditioned air to, or removing such air from, any space.

(54) “Weeds”, include Bittersweet (Nightshade), Buckhorn, Thistles, Curley Dock, Corn Cockle, Golden Rod, Iron Weed, Horse Nettle, Johnsongrass, Milkweed, Oxeye Daisy, Poison Hemlock, Poison Ivy, Poison Oak, Quackgrass, Queen Anne’s Lace, Ragweed, Wild Onion, Wild Mustard, Wild Parships, Prickly Lettuce, Stinging Nettle, and other plants capable of causing skin reactions upon contact or producing severe allergic respiratory reactions.

(55) “Workmanlike” means executed in a skilled manner; e.g., generally plumb, level, square, in line, undamaged, and without marring adjacent work.

(56) “Yard” means an open space on the same lot with a structure.

Section 1701.08 Terms Defined in Other Codes

Where terms are not defined in this Code and are defined in the Ohio Building Code, Ohio Fire Code, Ohio Fuel Gas Code, Ohio Mechanical Code, Ohio Plumbing Code, Residential Code of Ohio, North Canton Zoning Code, or NFPA 70, such terms shall have the meanings ascribed to them as stated in those Codes.

Section 1701.09 Terms Inclusive of Parts Thereof

Whenever the words “dwelling unit,” “dwelling,” “premises,” “building,” “rooming house,” “rooming unit,” “housekeeping unit”, or “story” are stated in this Code, they shall be construed as though they were followed by the words “or any part thereof.”