If a building is immediately dangerous to the health, welfare and safety of the occupants or to the public, the City can condemn it on an emergency basis.

Reasons for Condemnation

A building may be condemned if it is:

  • Extremely dilapidated, damaged, or deteriorated so that it is likely to collapse or attracts vagrants, or criminals or others who do not reside there.
  • A fire hazard.
  • A severe health hazard.
  • Infested with rodents or vermin.
  • Lacking in basic facilities such as water, electricity, and heat (see below)
  • In violation of other code requirements that make it dangerous to occupants or the public.

A building lacks basic facilities when it does not have water, hot water, electricity, heating, sewage disposal systems, garbage storage systems and more. When the existing systems are unsafe, or when the utilities have been shut off for any reason, the building is also considered to be lacking basic facilities. Basic facilities in residential properties are described in code and may be found here.

Process and regulations

The City posts a sign or placard on a condemned building, stating which City department condemned it, the date it must vacated, an order for it to remain vacant until the violations are corrected, and the penalties for removing or defacing the placard.

A condemned building cannot be occupied or used until the conditions that caused the condemnation are corrected. If it is occupied after it has been condemned, it must be vacated promptly.

The owner of a condemned building keeps title and responsibility for the building. The status is not the same as a unit of government taking title to a building under eminent domain and compensating the owner.

If you believe that a building is hazardous or unfit for human habitation, contact 651-266-8989. If you see that a condemned building is being occupied, call Saint Paul Police at 651-291-1111.

Last Edited: December 18, 2021