A partnership between City of Decatur and the Central Illinois Land Bank Authority should make it easier for interested buyers to purchase vacant lots and land from the City of Decatur. The City is hoping to convey lots to adjacent property owners so residents can create or expand their gardens, increase the size of their yard, or add/expand to legal off-street parking.  Please complete the on-line form as soon as possible and return it to the City of Decatur.  After you submit the completed form, the City will review for approval.  If approved, City or CILBA staff will contact you to negotiate a fair price for the lot and begin drafting a Quit Claim Deed for transfer of the property.  The City will prepare all paperwork and handle the recording with the Macon County Recorder of Deeds.  All you have to do is complete the application, when contacted come in and sign the deed and make the negotiated payment and we take care of the rest!

GIS Icon  Launch map of property locations

The city acquired these properties through foreclosure of demolition liens, donations, or purchased from the Macon County Trustee and other means. Most of the tracts are vacant, often because the city demolished derelict structures on these properties in the past. Some of the properties are small, and therefore they may be better re-used by appending them to adjoining lots. During the last year, the City Council has acted to make it easier to acquire, fence, improve and passively re-use these properties as “side lots.” The city is actively trying to sell these lots, and it disposes of most single tracts to adjoining owners.

Adding the adjacent parcel can improve the value of your property and help beautify the block to ensure these vacant lots are in good hands.

Our Program Rules

  • You agree to take ownership of the property and have it legally transferred to yourself.
  • Upon transfer, you will be responsible for the property going forward, including paying property taxes and keeping the property mowed and maintained to city code standards.
  • New owners may not have outstanding taxes or liabilities like code violations with the City of Decatur.  Note: if you do have any outstanding issues, we can discuss how to resolve these.

Complete the application form online.

You can also print the form, fill it out and return by US mail to:

City of Decatur Property Disposition Program
One Gary K. Anderson Plaza
Decatur, IL  62523-1196

Side Yard Uses

Acquired adjacent side yards may be used to expand the outdoor living space of existing residential properties for beautification, gardens and placement of small portable accessory structures permitted by current zoning regulations such as:

  1. Play Equipment, Pet Shelters and Open Pergolas.
  2. Fences
  3. Small Utility and Garden Sheds. Sheds, no greater than 100 square feet and not greater than 9 feet in height.

Larger permanent accessory structures such as garages and sheds greater than 100 square feet or greater than 9 feet in height require a building permit and the consolidation of the two lots. Please let us know if you are interested in building a permanent accessory structure on the requested side lot prior to purchase, so City Staff can discuss the requirements.

If you have any questions, please contact either –

Kylie Reynolds
Title Research Analyst