DEC logoRULES AND REGULATIONS
Regulatory Authority: Devens Enterprise Commission
Agency Contact: Peter C. Lowitt
Phone: 978.772.8831 ext 3313
Address: 33 Andrews Parkway, Devens, MA 01434
Massachusetts Register Number 1211
Effective Date: June 2012

974 CMR 5.00 RESIDENTIAL

5.04 Home Occupations and Home Businesses

  1. Home Occupations and Home Businesses

    1. Home occupations and businesses shall be clearly incidental and secondary to the use of the dwelling as a residence, shall be located within the dwelling unit, and shall not change the residential character of the premises. Home businesses and home occupations allow for local economic development, encourage the creation of new businesses, and to provide flexible or accessible working conditions for residents of Devens.

    2. The area utilized for the purpose of a home occupation or home business shall not exceed the smaller of twenty-five (25) per cent of the total floor area of the dwelling unit or four hundred (400) square feet. An accessory building may only be used for storage if permitted by the Director and shall be included in the total square footage allowed for the home occupation or business.

    3. No traffic shall be generated by such home occupation or home business in greater volumes than would normally be expected in a residential neighborhood.

    4. A single small pick-up truck (not to exceed ton) or van belonging to the resident business person may be parked on the lot in the rear yard or in the side yard set back from the street at least as far as the front line of the dwelling and screened from adjacent properties and ways, or stored within a structure.

    5. There shall be no exterior display or storage of goods or materials, and no exterior indication of the home business or occupation other than one non-illuminated identification sign complying with 974 CMR 6.00.

    6. Home occupations and businesses do not include the sale and/or repair of cars, trucks, or other vehicles or guns.

    7. There shall be no noise, vibration, glare, fumes, odors, or electrical interference beyond what normally occurs in a residential area.

    8. Approvals for home occupations and home businesses shall be valid for a period of three years and may be extended by applying for an extension prior to the expiration of the permit. Any significance expansion of or change in the home occupation or home business requires the submission of a written request prior to the expansion or change. Approval for the home business or home occupation is extinguished upon a change in ownership of the property.

    9. Home occupations:

        (a) An application for a home occupation shall be made by filing a written request with the Director.

        (b) The Director may approve the application for a home occupation, approve with conditions, or find that the home occupation is a home business within thirty days of the filing of the application. The Director may deny an application if it is determined that the impacts of the home occupation on the surrounding neighborhood cannot be mitigated or if the home occupation negatively impacts residential character and quality of life in the neighborhood.

    10. Home businesses:

        (a) An application for a home business shall be made by filing a written request with the Director.

        (b) In a home business, not more than one non-resident full-time employee, or equivalent thereof, may be employed. Non-resident employees in a home business shall be employed in a capacity supportive of the practice of the resident professional.

        (c) Not more than three (3) customers, clients, pupils, or patients for business or instruction shall be present at any one time. The Director shall establish allowable hours of operation for the business.

        (d) There shall be one parking space per each full-time equivalent employee plus the number determined by the Director sufficient to serve customers, clients, pupils, or patients in addition to the parking spaces required for the residence. Newly created parking spaces shall be located only in the side yard set back from the street at least as far as the front line of the dwelling or the rear yard and shall be screened from adjacent properties.

        (e) The Director may approve the application for a home business, approve with conditions, or find that the home business is of such impact that the proposal requires site plan review under 974 CMR 2.00 within thirty days of the filing of the application. The Director may deny an application if it is determined that the impacts of the home business on the surrounding neighborhood cannot be mitigated, if vehicular or pedestrian traffic generated by the business exceed residential levels, or if the home business negatively impacts residential character and quality of life in the neighborhood.


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