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Contact Yves LaPierre at 414-286-5762 or email him at

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City resources:

Milwaukee's New Home Catalogue
Traditional House Design Standards
Builders Certified Models
Zoning code
Development Center

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City of Milwaukee 
Office of Mayor
Tom Barrett



Home Building Sites for Sale

The City of Milwaukee has hundreds of opportunities for new home building.  Our affordable lot prices can put a newly constructed home within your reach.  Building a house in one of Milwaukees urban neighborhoods puts you close to downtown, jobs, shopping, schools, entertainment and parks.  Milwaukees extensive transit system can allow your family to live with just one car and roll the savings into that dream home.

So that everyone has a fair opportunity to purchase publicly owned land, and in the interest of growing our neighborhoods, we do not sell on a speculative basis.  Lots are sold for new home construction and owner occupancy.  If you are ready to build, we are ready to sell.

Here's how it works:

1.   Select Your Lot

      Look at the Citys lot inventory:

  • Extended List.  Offers are received on a first come basis with a 24 business hour hold for receipt of additional offers.  The 24-hour period will commence with the date stamp by DCD Real Estate during regular business hours.  Regular hours are 8:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding City holidays.  View in list format or in map format


 2.  Find a Builder -- Design Your Home

        Milwaukee's New Home Catalogue

        Find an experienced homebuilder and prepare your house plans

       A good resource is Metropolitan Builders Association

       Ask if your builder has experience building in urban neighborhoods with narrow lots and impacted subsoil conditions.

      View City-Certified Model Homes by private builders

        Design a home that is appropriate for the lot and the neighborhood.  Pay attention to:

       Traditional House Design Standards (Revised 11/22/2010)

       Zoning Code

       "Green" Your Milwaukee House


3.   Prepare your budget

        Work with your builder to prepare an affordable budget that works for your project

        Avoid surprises by reserving in your budget or by making sure the following costs are included in the contract with your builder:

       $5,000 to $10,000 for additional excavation and soil disposal trucking fees since most City lots contain old foundations

       $8,000 for sewer and water lateral connections to city utilities in the street

       Costs for tree removal or utility pole relocation

These are approximate costs as of September, 2008.  Your costs may

vary.  Understand what is covered in the contract with your builder and

what costs you may be responsible for.


4.   Obtain a prequalification letter for your budgeted costs


5.   Submit Your Offer

       Read the offer carefully for expiration and performance dates, buyer policies, sale terms and conditions and City disclosures

       Make sure all blanks are completed

       No broker is needed and the City will not pay any brokerage fees

  • Attach your mortgage prequalification letter

  • Submit the house elevations and a site plan if available for DCD approval.  (Certain lots may require plan submission with the offer, see the listing sheet.)  If you do not have plans yet, you must submit them in 30 days of offer acceptance.

DCD will accept your offer if the offering price is reasonable, your plans are compatible with the neighborhood and our design standards and you do not violate the City Buyer Policies.


6.   Work on Your Final Plans

        Obtain DCD plan approval if plans were not submitted with your offer

        Apply for a building permit with DCDs Development Center for the approved design


7.   Close on the Lot

      Closing must happen within 120 days of offer acceptance. Contingencies include submission to DCD of the following:

         Building permit for the approved design

         Executed construction contract

         Final financing with no contingencies and/or evidence of equity that matches your contract

      The City will convey by Quit Claim Deed on an as is, where is basis

      The City will provide title insurance if the sales price is $5,000 or



8.   Start Building! 

        Construction must start within 15 days of closing

        You must finish building and landscaping within 9 months of closing


9.   Move In.



If you are unsure about the appropriateness of your plans in terms of lot size or design, call us at 414-286-5762 before submitting your offer

If you'd prefer to buy a new home ...

Several community organizations that build new homes on City lots have houses available for sale.  For information on current availability, contact the following agencies:

Housing Authority - Highland Homes

Neighborhood Improvement Development Corporation Community Homes Program

Milwaukee Christian Center

   Milwaukee Department of City Development       809 N Broadway       Milwaukee, WI 53202       Contact DCD