Side Yard Program

Side Yard PicThrough the DHCD Side Yard Program, you can increase the size of your property and the value of your home. By purchasing and transforming an adjacent vacant lot into a beautiful garden, parking pad, or deck, you'll be helping to beautify your neighborhood.


Review of Complete Offer Package and Award Decision 30 DAYS
Board of Estimates Approval 45 DAYS
Settlement 45 DAYS


*TImelines shown are targets, however, some application times may exceed timeline shown due to unique circirmstances


The DHCD Side Yard Program provides an opportunity for property owners adjacent to city-owned vacant lots to purchase these side lots “as is.”  Property owners may use the lots for various purposes including gardens, landscape, fencing the property and if applicable, driveways and existing property expansion. Interested adjacent owners can apply for up to  two sideyards. 

Interested applicants must complete an application, which includes a disclosure of intended uses, and submit  for review.The completed application will be reviewed and a determination made whether or not the side lot purchase can proceed. If approved, applicant will submit a certified check, money order or cashier’s check in the full amount of the purchasing fee. Some properties are subject to an annual ground rent and will become the responsibility of the new side yard owner after settlement. Additionally, some uses may require Zoning approval. You can contact the Zoning Administrator’s Office at (410) 396-4126 for information regarding requirements associated with your intended use of the property.


      • Side yard properties must be vacant and unimproved.
      • Side yard properties must be physically contiguous to adjacent owner’s principal residence. Priority is given to transferees who are owner-occupants.
      • Side yard properties shall consist of no more than two lots incapable of independent development as determined by local zoning and code-enforcement.
      • The fixed side yard pricing applies only to lots up to 1500 SF.  Lots greater than 1500 SF will be subject to an additional cost per square foot and additional review. The maximum size for a potential side yard is 5,000 SF.
      • The applicant must have a record of responsible property ownership and management.
      • Your intended use is subject to the Laws & Regulations of Baltimore City.

*The deed will contain language prohibiting the owner or its heirs or assigns from seeking zoning changes or relief for uses not identified in the application and approved in the award.



Adjacent owner-occupant - $500 per 1500 SF (.33/SF)

Non owner-occupant - $1000 per 1500 SF (.66/SF)

Certified Checks, Cashier’s Check, or Money Orders should be made payable to the “Director of Finance”

Note: Purchase price include title transfer and deed recordation. Some of the pricing may vary depending on the uniqueness of the lots circumstances.


The purchaser should be aware that property taxes for the property will be the responsibility of the new owner from the date of settlement.


Settlement shall occur upon evidence of compliance with all DHCD side yard disposition policies and within 60 days of an executed Land Disposition Agreement.

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    The City reserves the right to reject or disqualify offers that are in improper format or are incomplete.  The City further reserves the right to remove a property from the side yard process at any time.