Code Compliance

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Code Compliance is open 8AM - 4PM Mon-Thurs and 9:15AM - 4PM Fridays.

703-324-1300
TTY 711

12055 Government Center Parkway, Suite 1016
Fairfax, VA 22035

Jack W. Weyant, P.E.,
Director

Code Compliance FAQs

The Department of Code Compliance investigates neighborhood quality of life complaints, involving most zoning, noise, property maintenance, building, fire, blight, grass and health codes. The department consolidates many of the county’s code enforcement activities into a single agency.

Animals

What animals am I not permitted to own and keep at my house in Fairfax County?

Paragraph 2 of Section 2-512 of the Zoning Ordinance regulates keeping animals on your property.  If you have any questions, please contact the planner of the day in the Ordinance Administration branch of Department of Planning and Zoning at 703-324-1314, TTY 711.

What are the regulations for the number of dogs that someone can have on a property?

Paragraph 2 of Section 2-512 of the Zoning Ordinance regulates the number of dogs allowed on your property.  If you have any questions, please contact the planner of the day in the Ordinance Administration branch of Department of Planning and Zoning at 703-324-1314, TTY 711.

Businesses

What type of businesses are people allowed to run from their home?

Article 10 of the Fairfax County Zoning Ordinance regulates businesses being conducted in homes.  More information on home occupation permit guidelines is available online or by calling the planner of the day in the Ordinance Administration branch of Department of Planning and Zoning at 703-324-1314, TTY 711.

Construction

My landlord is refusing to fix some issues in the house so I don't want to pay him the full amount of rent. How do I do that without being evicted?

Visit What Tenants and Landlords Need to Know for specific information regarding tenant and landlord rights and responsibilities or call Consumer Affairs at 703-222-8435, TTY 711.

What is the number for permits?

The Permit Application Center can be reached at 703-222-0801, TTY 711, or visit the Building Permits and Inspections Web page for more information.

What is the number for Residential Inspections?

Residential Inspections can be reached at 703-631-5101, TTY 711, or visit the Building Permits and Inspections Web page for more information.

What are the setbacks for my property?

Please visit Residential Setback Requirements to determine the setback for your property.

How is my property zoned?

Use the Zoning District Analyzer to find out how your property is zoned.

DCC Processes

What is the process for investigating a complaint?

process chart

Are complaints confidential?

Yes. Code Compliance staff do not reveal the identity of the complainant, and this information is even exempted from Freedom of Information Act Inquiries. Anonymous calls are accepted but not preferred. Investigators may need to contact the complainant when additional information is needed. Without that, the case may have to be closed.

How do you appeal a Notice of Violation?

This depends on the nature of the code violation. Fire Code violations and Building Code violations (which include property maintenance violations of the Virginia Maintenance Code) are all appealed to the Local Board of Building Code Appeals. Please complete the online appeal form or call 703-324-1780, TTY 711, for more information. Zoning Violations are appealed either to the Board of Zoning Appeals or the Zoning Administration Division. Information and forms can also be obtained on the Board of Zoning Appeals Web page.

Are there fines charged to violators?

Civil penalties entered by the General District Court shall be paid to the Office of the County Attorney.  Investigators may not accept any payments, including those associated with fines and fees.

What happens when someone is found to be in violation of a code?

A Code Compliance investigator will notify the responsible part(ies) in writing by issuing a Corrective Work Order or a Notice of Violation. These documents will itemize code violation(s), require correction within a reasonable timeframe, and direct how to bring code violation(s) into compliance. Once the specified timeframe for compliance has expired, the investigator will conduct a follow-up inspection. If violation(s) are still found to be present, further action will be taken. This may result in the initiation of criminal or civil litigation.

What type of violations take priority?

New cases do not all carry the same level of priority for investigation, as some cases will need the investigator’s attention more urgently than other cases. The general practice for prioritizing cases is as follows: first, matters concerning a threat or potential threat to life-safety and welfare; secondly, high profile or matters of significance; and then other cases. Life safety and welfare cases should always receive the utmost attention, so that injury and death can be avoided. This may include, but is not limited to, such cases as: a vacant house on the verge of collapse, exposed sewage backup in an occupied building, or children, the sick or disabled, or the elderly living without utilities.

Maintenance

My neighbor cut down a lot of trees in his yard and left the debris at the back of his lot line. Can you cite him for the tree debris and make him remove it?

No. There is no county regulation regarding the removal of tree debris unless in a Resource Protected Area.  More information regarding tree care and removal is available online

My neighbor graded his yard and now all the water flows into my backyard and creates a huge puddle and has nowhere to go. Can you make my neighbor fix this drainage issue?

To report a drainage issue, please fill out and submit the Report a Storm Drainage Problem online form or call the Maintenance and Stormwater Management at 703-877-2800, TTY 711. 

A house in the neighborhood has broken windows, peeling paint, falling gutters and other similiar issues. Is there an agency that I can contact to deal with these types of issues?

Homes and properties must be well maintained both inside and outside, according to the Property Maintenance Code. The Department of Code Compliance enforces the Property Maintenance Code. Fill out the online complaint form to file a complaint or call 703-324-1300, TTY 711.

Mold

The house I'm renting had a flood that was taken care of and repaired, however now I have mold in my home and the landlord refuses to clean it. What department in the county deals with mold and what information do I need to report the issue?

The county does not have codes or regulations addressing mold. For more information, please visit the Environmental Protection Agency online.

Too Many People in Home

There appears to be too many people living in one house. How many people are allowed to live in one house?

The Zoning Ordinance regulates how many people can occupy a single residence.  If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the planner of the day in the Ordinance Administration branch of Department of Planning and Zoning at 703-324-1314, TTY 711.

Vehicles

There are inoperable vehicles and commercial vehicles parked on my street causing issues when trying to pass a car or trying to see at intersections. Can you come out and ticket the vehicles?

DCC does not have jurisdiction on public streets. Parking Restrictions and Related Issues gives more detailed information.

My neighbor has a car parked on the grass on their property. Are people allowed to park a vehicle on the grass?

Paragraph 8 of section 11-102 of the Zoning Ordinance regulates vehicles parked on the grass and in the front yard.  If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the planner of the day in the Ordinance Administration branch of Department of Planning and Zoning at 703-324-1314, TTY 711.