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1. Applicability and Descriptions

These restrictions shall be applicable to all lots in the Sherwood Forest and Sherwood Forest Manor Subdivisions, both of which shall be referred to herein as “the Subdivisions.” The said two subdivisions are property in the City of Detroit, Wayne County, Michigan, and as more fully described as follows:
  • (a) Sherwood Forest Subdivision of the Southwest quarter of Section 3, TIN, R11 E, the plat thereof being recorded at Liber 39, Page 11, W.C.R.
  • (b) Sherwood Forest Manor Subdivision of part of the East 1/2 of the Southwest quarter of Section 3, TIS, R11 E, the plat thereof being recorded at Liber 59, Page 17, W.C.R.

2. Nature and Cost of New Construction

No residence other than a single private dwelling house which shall cost not less than $100,000 shall be erected on any lot in the Subdivisions (other than lots fronting on Livernois and Seven Mile Roads). Lots fronting on Seven Mile Road may be used for two (2) family residences or other uses permitted by law, the cost of construction of which is not less that $150,000. Lots fronting on Livernois Avenue may be used for stores or other uses permitted by law, the cost of construction of which are to not less than $150,000. The foregoing dollar figures shall be increased in January of each year by a percentage equal to the percentage rise in the previous twelve (12) months of the housing component of the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index (1967=100) for All Urban Consumers for the City of Detroit, or the equivalent of such index then in existence. All residences and business structures shall be of pressed, glazed, or wire cut brick, stone or concrete over tile or metal lath for exterior construction with full basement. Residences shall be at least two full stories and not more that 2 1/2 stories in height, containing a minimum of 2,200 square feet of enclosed area, with at least 18 feet of studding. No residence building with a flat roof shall be erected on any of said lots.

3. Use of Property

The property and buildings in the Subdivisions (excepting lots fronting on Livernois Avenue which may be used for purposes for which they are properly zoned) shall be used and occupied only by a single family. They shall not be used for any trade, business or occupation or employment (or uses incident thereto) or for apartment, multiple residential or boarding house use. No advertising sign, billboard, or other advertising device shall be permitted, erected, placed or maintained at any time upon said premises other than the normal and usual “For Sale” sign incident to the sale of property. The term “family” as used herein shall be as such term is defined in the Zoning Ordinances of the City of Detroit in effect on the initial effective date of these restrictions. No property in the Subdivisions shall be used or occupied in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, for any noxious or unlawful purpose or for any activity which constitutes a nuisance under applicable law.

4. Non-Discrimination Policy

It is hereby declared to be the policy of the Subdivisions that all property therein will be available without regard to race, creed, color, sex or national origin.

5. Garages

A garage may be erected on any of said lots except on lots fronting on Livernois Avenue, but only for the private use of the owner of the lot on which said garage is located. Living apartments may be provided in any 2-story garage for the occupancy of persons, provided that such persons (a) are in the employ of the property owner, and (b) all of such persons perform continuous and substantial services for the owner or occupants of the principal dwelling, and (c) receive therefor monies and/or consideration substantially in excess of, and in addition to, or the reasonable value of, use and occupancy of the said living apartment. Each garage (or any out-building) shall correspond in architecture and shall be of the same material and construction as the residence to which it is appurtenant. A single storage building or garden and such other tools and equipment shall be permitted on each lot provided that it (a) is placed at the rear of the property, and (b) is harmonious in color and design to the contiguous property, and (c) does not exceed six (6) feet by ten (10) feet in length and width, and six (6) feet in height.

6. Approval of Construction

A property owner shall submit to the Sherwood Forest Association (“Association”) for its prior approval, detailed plans and specifications for the construction and location of any residence or garage or any material addition to or alteration of same which requires a permit from the City of Detroit. All such plans must be in conformity with all applicable building codes, rules and regulations, and these restrictions and otherwise provide for construction in harmony with the existing structure of which it is a part and correspond in architecture to the immediate area of the subdivision involved. This must be approved by the Association in writing prior to commencement of any work or construction. If the Association has failed to approve said plans, and has failed to advise the owner that said plans are not acceptable, within thirty (30) days after their receipt by the Association, the said plans shall be considered as approved, and any construction shall be in accordance therewith. Any substantial changes in plans shall require the same approval and zoning as the original plans.

7. Miscellaneous Restrictions

With respect to lots in Sherwood Forest Subdivision, no building or any part of any building, such as bow windows, or swell fronts or other parts thereof designed for occupancy (except on open porches or steps) shall be erected on any lot fronting on Stratford, Chesterfield, Roslyn, Shrewsbury or Warrington; or East side of Berkeley Road, or on Lots 473 to 477 within thirty (30) feet of front lot line, or any other lot fronting on Canterbury, Sherbourne, Parkside, West side of Berkeley, Kingston, Seven Mile Road and Cambridge Roads with forty (40) feet of front lot line. With respect to lots in Sherwood Forest Manor Subdivision, no building or any part of any building, such as bow windows, or swell fronts or other parts designed for occupancy except open porches or steps shall be erected on Lots 1 to 26, with 50 feet of the front lot line thereof; on Lots 27 to 47 inclusive, within 30 feet of the front line thereof; on Lots 48 to 51 inclusive, within 40 feet of the front lot line thereof, and on Lots 52 to 63 inclusive, within 50 feet of the front lot line thereof; unless otherwise approved by the Vendor. All residences or part thereof, including cornices, balconies, pergolas or porches shall not exceed nearer than five (5) feet to the side lot line.

8. Grade Restrictions

All dwellings shall be erected on a grade of an least 20 inches above the inner sidewalk grade line or 15 inches if building line is 30 feet and according to profile plans of the engineers of the property. The natural grade of the land shall not be raised more than 2 feet above the sidewalk without the written consent of the Association and of the adjoining property owners.

9. Fences and Hedges

No boundary lines between lots shall be designated except by hedges or woven wire fences of a uniform pattern with iron posts or any other type approved by the Association in accordance with procedures referred to in Paragraph 6 of these Restrictions, and shall not extend above four (4) feet in height except that on boundary lines in immediate areas of swimming pools, such may extend to a height of six (6) feet, and no hedge higher than two (2) feet from the grade line, nor fence of any kind shall be allowed to extend beyond the building line. With respect to corner lots, or other lots with respect to which there may be unusual or special circumstances, the nature, height and location of fences and hedges may vary from these requirements, after application to, and approval in writing by the Association, which approval shall be given upon good cause shown and on such conditions as may be reasonable and consistent with the general intent of these Restrictions. On lots abutting on an alley, a tight board fence or a masonry wall of a uniform height of 5 feet must be constructed on the rear lot line.

Privacy Fence Standard and Guidelines – PDF
Privacy Fence Standard and Guidelines – DOC

10. Temporary Structures

No tents, shacks, barns, vehicles (including, but not limited to trailers, recreational vehicles and vans) or any temporary building or structure of any design whatsoever, shall be used for living or residence purposes. No temporary occupancy, residence or domicile shall be permitted in unfinished, incomplete or materially damaged residences or structures, provided that this restriction shall not prevent the erection of a temporary storage building for materials and supplies used solely for, and in, the construction of a dwelling, provided that such storage building is removed from the premises upon completion of the residence.

11. Animals and Pets

No animals, livestock or poultry or any kind, except cats, dogs or other household pets, may be raised, bred or kept. Cats, dogs and other household pets shall not be kept, bred or raised for any pecuniary gain, and their owner shall comply with all laws and ordinances pertaining to the ownership and keeping of such animals.

12. Lot Maintenance

No lot, nor any part thereof, shall be used or maintained as a dumping area for rubbish, trash, garbage or other waste material, or as a storage area for abandoned or disabled vehicles. Waste materials shall be kept in sanitary containers properly concealed from public view. No outside incinerator shall be maintained or used. All lots shall be maintained in a clean and orderly manner free of rubbish, debris and trash, weeds and excessive growth.

13. Building Completion

The erection of any new building or repair of any building damaged by fire or otherwise shall be completed as rapidly as possible. Should the owner or contractor leave such building in an incomplete condition for a period of more than six (6) months, then the Association or its authorized representative, in its discretion is authorized and empowered (but not required) to tear down and clear from the property the uncompleted portion of such structure, or to complete the same at its discretion, and in either event, the expense incurred in so doing shall be charged to the owner’s interest therein and shall be a lien upon said lands and property.

14. Moving Residences

No existing residences or buildings may be moved on to any lot or lots in the Subdivisions.

15. Debris/Tree Stump Removal

All unused building materials and temporary construction shall be removed from the property and Subdivisions within sixty (60) days after substantial completion of construction. The portion of the surface of the earth which is disturbed by excavation and other construction work shall be finish-graded and seeded or covered with such other landscaping as soon as the construction work and weather permit. Stumps and trees are not to be removed to adjoining or other sites in the Subdivision. All tree stumps in front yards shall be removed.

16. Vacant Property

The owners of any vacant or unoccupied building or structure shall take reasonable steps to secure said building against trespassers and other hazards and otherwise keep and maintain said buildings and property in accordance with these restrictions. The securing of buildings shall be accomplished by the use of wire mesh unless such is not feasible.

17. Restrictions Enforcement

The Sherwood Forest Association, and its successors, shall have the right to administer and enforce these Restrictions, provided, however, that such shall not preclude any property owner whose property is subject to these Restrictions and who is not in violation of any Restrictions, from also enforcing these Restrictions to the extent permitted by law, if the Association failed to act within 120 days after be requested to do so by such property owner. Enforcement may be appropriate legal proceeding to restrain violation and/or to recover damages. The cost and expense of successfully enforcing these Restrictions (or taking any action under Paragraph 13 hereof or correcting conditions which are in violation hereof), incurred by the Association or any individual property owner(s) shall be borne and paid by the owner(s) of the property or lot with reference to which the violation occurred. The unpaid amount thereof, plus interest at the rate of 7% per annum until paid in full, shall be and become a lien upon said property upon the filing with the Register of Deeds, an affidavit executed by an officer of the Association (or the property owner incurring such expense) setting forth in reasonable detail, the amount of such costs and expenses and the purpose(s) for which they were expended, and the description of the property against which the lien is filed. Any lien obtained under these Restrictions may be enforced and foreclosed in the same manner as real estate mortgages with powers of sale, under the laws of the State of Michigan.

18. Continuance and Renewal

These Restrictions shall run with the land and shall be binding on the owners and signatories, their heirs, successors and assigns, and upon any other persons or other entities owning or claiming any right, title or other interest of any kind in any of the property in the Subdivision until January 1, 2002. Existing easements for public utilities shall continue. From and after the year 2002, the Restrictions shall be automatically extended for successive periods of ten (10) years each, unless prior to the end of any such restriction term, an instrument signed and agreed to by a majority of the then owners of the lots in each of the Subdivisions is duly recorded with the Register of Deeds, setting forth any change or alteration in said Restrictions, in whole or in part, or terminating same.

19. Existing Conditions

Any use practice or condition which
  • (a) was in existence as of April 1, 1981, and
  • (b) was or may have been in violation of a property restriction in effect prior to these Restrictions, but solely relating to the subject matters covered in paragraphs 2, 3, 5, 7, 8 and 9 of these Restrictions, and
  • (c) is in existence on the effective date of these Restrictions,

shall be considered as permissible, non-conforming use, practice or condition, and as such may continue notwithstanding such may be in violation of these Restrictions, provided, however, that whenever any of such permissible non-conforming use, practice or condition is temporarily or permanently discontinued, changed or altered, in any way whatsoever, the provisions of these Restrictions shall govern and apply, and such non-conforming uses, practices or conditions shall cease to be permitted.

In any dispute involving this paragraph, the owner attempting to establish the existence of a permissible non-conforming use, practice or condition, shall have the burden of proof. The said burden of proof with respect to element (c) above may be deemed to have been satisfied if, prior to the effective date of these Restrictions, the owner involved submits a signed detailed written description of the said use, practice or condition, to the Association, in a form and with substance reasonably acceptable to the Association.

Any other existing use, practice or condition which is not a permissible non-conforming use shall be changed or altered to conform to the provisions hereof.

20. Effective Date

These Restrictions shall only become operative and effective on such date, occurring no earlier than January 1, 1982, as the owners of at least 75% of the lots in each of the Sherwood Forest and Sherwood Forest Manor Subdivisions (exclusive of lots fronting on Livernois) shall have duly executed consents thereto in recordable form provided by the Association. The specific effective date shall be the date on which there is recorded these Restrictions and affidavit by an officer of the Association stating that the said 75% requirements have been met and setting forth the lot numbers with respect to which such consents have been obtained, together with the aforesaid duly executed consents. Additional consents may be obtained and recorded thereafter.

In the even that such affidavit is not recorded on or before September 1, 1982, these Restrictions and the consents thereto by any lot owner shall be void and of no effect.

21. Separability

Invalidation of any of these provisions or restrictions by any court shall not affect the validity of the remaining provisions and Restrictions, which shall remain in full force and effect.


These restrictions became effective on September 1, 1982, after being signed by more than the required 75% of the homeowners and after an affidavit was timely filed and recorded.

City of Detroit Historic District Commission:

Making Exterior Changes Within Local Historic Districts

Click below to download the Historic Property Modifications Application:


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