How to Complain About a Neighborhood Nuisance
Guidelines for Making a Complaint to the City
Return to Resident Handbook
- Don't assume that a complaint has already been made.
- When you call the City, give your name, address, and phone number. This information is kept confidential on all complaints, but is necessary in case an inspector needs to call you for more information.
- On police calls the identity of the caller is kept confidential only under certain circumstances (e.g., when the caller is a crime victim), and there may be cases in which you are asked to sign a police complaint.
- If you do not wish to call, you may also file a complaint using our online Complaint form.
- Give the address where the nuisance is located and list specifically what is wrong. The City needs specific complaints.
- Don't exaggerate. Be accurate and factual.
- Give the City time to act. Housing code violations, for example, may take from ten days to several months to correct. Call again after a reasonable time to find out what is happening.
- Call again if the problem recurs or if a new problem occurs. If an owner follows an inspector's order, the case is closed, so another complaint is needed to open it up again.
- Remember that City staff are people, too. They are concerned about responding to your needs. A reasonable tone and general politeness is welcomed.
- Keep a record of your call.
- Ask questions concerning follow-up.