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Business in Bloomfield Faq

While Bloomfield Township is a predominately residential area, we certainly welcome and encourage new business growth within the allowable zoning districts and under the guidelines of our Master Plan.
 
All ordinance information pertaining to any zoning development may be found in Clearzoning, an interactive zoning ordinance document found here. We encourage new business owners to take the time to familiarize themselves with this ordinance. Feel free to contact our Planning and Building Divisions to answer questions regarding this ordinance. 
 
Below are some of the most frequently asked questions about opening a business in Bloomfield Township.
 

1. Which zoning district may I operate my business in?

To determine the zoning district for your proposed business, please refer to the Clearzoning Ordinance, Section 42-3.1 for the uses allowed in each district. There are links to each district that state the allowable uses within the district. Section 42-3.2 will link you directly to a map showing where the zoning districts are located, thereby determining potential locations for your business.
 

2. How many parking spaces do I need for my business?

The number of required parking spaces depends on the use or type of business you will be operating.  Parking requirements and measurements are described in the Clearzoning Ordinance, Sections 42-5.2 and 42-5.3.
 

3. Do I need any approvals or permits to put up a sign?

Yes, all new signs and changes to existing signs must be presented to the Design Review Board for approval per Section 42-6.4. The allowable location and the size of a sign vary, depending on the type of sign and the zoning district in which the business is located. Sign installation permits (building and/or electrical) are required and are issued by the Building Division. Please see the Clearzoning Ordinance, Section 42-5.9, for sign information.
 

4. I want to make changes to the exterior of my business. Do I need a permit?

Design Review Board approval must be obtained prior to any exterior design changes to all non-residential properties. Once approval is obtained, Section 42-7.2 states that no building or structure within the Township may be erected, moved, altered, repaired or razed until a building permit is obtained from the Building Division. This permit requirement also holds true for any change in the use of any building or land. Contact the Building Division for the specific permit requirements pertaining to your building renovations. Permit forms are available at the Building Division counter or on the Township website here.  Review of the site plan for your renovations may also determine if a variance from the Zoning Board of Appeals is required.
 

5. What is required for interior renovations of my business?

A building permit is required for interior alterations as well as exterior changes as stated above. Commercial interior alterations do not require prior Design Review Board approval. Contact the Building Division for the specific permit requirements pertaining to your building renovations. It may include electrical, plumbing and/or mechanical permits as well. All permit applications are available at the Building Division counter or on our website here.
 

6. When renovating, what accessibility updates are required?

Accessibility requirements are covered by the Michigan Building Codes. In most cases when renovating a space, these requirements will have to be met. The Building Inspector can supply you with specific information pertaining to your renovation.
 

7. Are renovated spaces required to be brought up to the current Fire Code and which codes apply to commercial projects?

The Fire Code does apply to renovated spaces. The Fire Marshal is involved in both the plan review and inspection process. Contact the Fire Marshal for more specific information as it pertains to your renovation.
 

8. What is a Certificate of Occupancy and when is it required?

A Certificate of Occupancy ensures that a space complies with Township ordinances, is code compliant, and is safe to occupy. The Certificate must be obtained before any new business may open to the public.  Under section 42-7.3, a Certificate of Occupancy is required for the change of any existing principal use or tenancy of a building (or land) to another principal use or tenancy. If there are alterations or renovations being done under a required permit, you will need to work closely with the Building Division to determine when the Certificate of Occupancy may be issued. Certificate of Occupancy applications are available on the Township website here or at the Building Division counter.
 

9. Do I need a permit for my grand opening?

A Special Event (see Section 42-6.3) requires a permit when specific criteria are met, as indicated on the permit application found on the website here. For example, temporary signs, tents, outdoor sales displays, etc. would be indicative of a Special Event permit requirement. To ensure a successful grand opening, please apply for a Special Event permit 30 days prior to the event. Contact the Planning Division for more information.
 

10. May I work out of my home?

Under Section 42-4.43, Bloomfield Township allows for a business to be conducted within a residential zoning district with restrictions.  Some of the restrictions are:
 
  • The business must be conducted completely within the home.
  • No employees other than the residents of the dwelling may conduct the business. 
  • The business cannot change the character of the home.
  • No signage can be observed from the interior or exterior of the home.
  • There shall be no outside storage of any kind related to the business.
  • Parking must be within the existing driveway.
Reference the ordinance in its entirety on the Township website.

11. How do I register the name of my business?

Contact the Oakland County Economic Development office at 248-858-8706.
 

12. How do I obtain a Tax ID Number (EIN)?

The EIN identifies the business for federal and state tax purposes. Contact the Federal Internal Revenue Service for additional information.
 
For more information, contact the:
Building Division               248-433-7715
Planning Division              248-433-7795
Fire Marshall                     248-433-7745