What are city rules for storing RVs?

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Sunday, November 4, 2007
— Your neighbor has a motor home, Jet Ski and hot-air balloon stored in his driveway.

Is that legal?

Kelly Lee, an inspector for the city of Janesville, tells us what is legal and what isnít when it comes to recreational vehicles. Obviously, some folks choose storage options that might be legal but are downright inconsiderate.

Q: What does the city ordinance allow regarding outside storage of recreational vehicles?

A: Residents can store two recreational vehicles outside. Those vehicles include boats, motor homes, Jet Skis and snowmobiles. A Jet Ski and a snowmobile stored on a single trailer count as one.

The city prefers vehicles be stored inside garages. But they can also be stored on driveways or concrete pads as long as they donít encroach on sidewalks or public right-of-ways. (Before you pave your entire lot, check with the city. Zoning codes require some green space.)

If an RV is stored off a paved surface, it must be stored behind the front line of the house. On a corner lot, you cannot park your motor home in the yard facing the side street.

Q: What if my neighbor stores his RV between our houses and itís the only thing I see outside my bedroom window?

A: No setbacks dictate where a recreational vehicle can be stored. In that situation, it may be an eyesore but legal as long as the vehicle isnít stored over the property line.

Q: Do neighborhood covenants come into play?

A: A covenant may be stricter than the cityís ordinances, but the city doesnít enforce covenants. Thatís a civil matter.

Q: Can you build a storage shed?

A: A resident is allowed one attached garage, one detached garage of up to 750 square feet and also a storage shed of up to 120 square feet. First, check the setback requirements.

Q: What do the ordinances say about motor vehicles?

A: Any motor vehicle that sits outside a garage must be licensed and operable.

Last updated: 9:40 am Thursday, December 13, 2012

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