CHAPEL HILL – As we approach the New Year, the Town of Chapel Hill is reminding residents, landlords and students living off-campus next year about important regulations that will cost you money in fines if not followed.

Loryn Clark, Chapel Hill’s Interim Assistant Planning Director, says that many students are moving into new residences for the spring semester.

“We’ve noticed that there are a lot of “For Rent” signs out there right now, and we just wanted to put out a reminder about the existing regulations,” Clark explains.

Clark says that one of the most important regulations to keep in mind is that no more than four unrelated people can reside in a single-family house or half-section of a duplex.

“The key regulations are often the ones that we receive the most complaints [from neighbors] about, particularly the regulation that no more than 4 people can live in a single-family house,” Clark says.

Judy Johnson, Senior Planner for the Town, says that in coordination with the Chapel Hill Police Department, the Town has increased enforcement of these regulations.

If a property is found to be in violation of the rules, fines of up to $100 could be issued per day until the violation is corrected. Typically the Town will issue an initial fine and then allow a 30-day grace period to come into compliance.

“If you don’t have people moved out by the end of that 30 days, the fines continue to accrue,” Johnson says. “And if you have a second violation in a year, we have a $250 violation for the second.”

Another restriction to note is that parking areas must be clearly defined by an all-weather surface or gravel, and that the parking area can only take up 40 percent of a front yard.

Both Northside and Pine Knolls neighbors should be aware that a maximum of four cars are allowed to be parked on a lot – that includes parking in the side and back yards. It is noted that owners of duplexes and triplexes may apply to the Town Planning Board for an exception to this regulation to allow up to six cars on a lot.

Additionally, residents should roll their garbage bins out to the curb by 6 a.m. and remove them by 7 p.m. on trash collection days.

For more information, you can visit the Town’s Off-Campus Student Life Webpage at  or contact the Chapel Hill Planning Department at