To avoid over-occupancy complaints, landlords and tenants should be familiar with The City of Fort Collins occupancy limit.
The "U plus 2" law or occupancy ordinance states:
"Occupancy in a residential dwelling unit (single-family, duplex, and multifamily) is restricted to:
- one family as defined below (Section 5.1.2) and not more than one additional person;
- or two adults and their dependents, if any, and not more than one additional person."
Family shall mean any number of persons who are all related by blood, marriage, adoption, guardianship or other duly authorized custodial relationship, and who live together as a single housekeeping unit and share common living, sleeping, cooking, and eating facilities. The occupancy limits are further defined in the Land Use Code 3.8.16.
Under this ordinance the following scenarios are allowed:
These are not allowed:
An occupancy disclosure form is required to be signed at the time of lease or sale of a property. We have two versions of this form, one for sale and one for lease. (See Download Forms above.) Owners or landlords should keep this form as part of their records. The form is intended to ensure all parties are aware of and understand the occupancy ordinance. If an occupancy complaint is filed on a property the City will ask the owner or the landlord to provide a copy of a signed occupancy disclosure form.
On May 4, 2010, City Council adopted changes to the Occupancy Ordinance Disclosure Statement requirements. These changes went into effect on May 14, 2010. Since 2006, the form was required to be signed by all parties (property owner or manager and all tenants) at the time of lease signing. The additional requirements include:
If you believe there is a home near you which is over-occupied, you can file a complaint by either completing an investigation form (see Download Forms above) or calling the Nuisance Hotline at 970-416-2200. Complaints can be made anonymously, although staff encourages signed complaints so they can work directly with neighbors to resolve the issue. All complaints will be followed up on. Over-occupancy can be difficult to prove. It is helpful if you can provide information such as license plate numbers of occupants.
Host Family Permits are now available (See Download Forms above).
City Council recently adopted a new ordinance to allow a process to increase the occupancy limit for host families. With respect to single-family, owner-occupied dwellings, the number of persons allowed under Section 3.8.16(A)(1) may be increased to allow one additional person by the issuance of a “host family permit” provided that the following conditions are met:
Permits issued shall be valid for ten (10) months from the date of issuance. A permit may be revoked during the permit duration if a violation of the City or Land Use Code has occurred at the premises for which the permit was issued. A fee of $25 will be charged by the City for the host family permit in order to cover the costs of processing the application, which shall be payable at the time of application.
Since the 1960s, Fort Collins has enforced occupancy restrictions. The City addresses occupancy to help ensure health and safety of residents, and to help protect the quality and character of neighborhoods.
It depends on if those guests are occupants. The occupancy limit applies to occupants - not guests. The code classifies anyone who spends more than 30 nights in a dwelling unit in a 12-month period as an occupant. Therefore, a frequent guest could actually be considered to be an occupant. If the City receives a complaint, there would be an investigation to see if there's reasonable suspicion of a violation of the occupancy limit.
The property can be designated as an Extra Occupancy Rental Home if the house meets certain criteria. For more details, please download Extra Occupancy Rental House Regulations.
You can contact Neighborhood Services at 970-224-6046. If you are a CSU student you can also contact CSU's Student Legal Services at sls.colostate.edu.