New Residents

A quick guide for residents new to Wakefield.

Welcome to Wakefield!

In addition to the resources compiled here and available throughout our site, we encourage you to attend our Wakefield 101 New Resident Open House. Our next session will take place on May 16, 2019 at our beautiful Beebe Library. It’s an event you won’t want to miss! 

Click here for Wakefield 101 registration and details.

Don't forget to check out our community calendar to see some of the great events Wakefield hosts throughout the year. We hope you enjoy calling Wakefield home.


CodeRED e-alerts:

icon of bell ringingThe Town of Wakefield uses the CodeRED system for important notifications. It gives us the ability to deliver timely information to our residents through various communication channels, including phone, email, and text. Click to read more about the CodeRED system and sign up.


Trash and recycling:

icons of trash and recycling bucketsEach household is assigned a trash collection bin, and legal two, three, and four-family households that receive Town refuse collection have one refuse container for each legal unit. These blue containers have a ten-year warranty and normal wear and tear can be repaired. Is yours missing? Our containers have serial numbers for tracking purposes. Contact our Department of Public Works if you have any questions or concerns about your bin.

Residents also have the opportunity to buy special event bags at a cost of $10 for five (5) bags for trash overflow. You can pick them up at Town Hall.

Single-stream recycling collection is mandatory for all residents who receive Town refuse collection. Residents can use existing recycling containers or refuse barrels provided they feature a recycling sticker. These free stickers can be obtained at Town Hall. There is no limit to the number of recycling containers that can be put out.

For additional information on trash and recycling collection, including large-item pickup and hazardous waste, click here.

Wakefield has a yard waste site on Nahant Street that is open only to residents. Permits can be purchased at Town Hall for $25. 


Voting and elections:

icon of election button with the word VOTEIf you currently have a Massachusetts driver's license or state ID card, you may use the state’s online voter registration application to register to vote, update your address, or change your party affiliation. Wakefield residents vote in the Galvin Middle School at 525 Main Street. Knowing your precinct will make your check-in faster; you can use the Secretary of State's lookup tool to find it.

Wakefield’s town charter states that “all legislative powers of the Town shall be exercised by an open Town Meeting. The administration of all Town fiscal, prudential, and municipal affairs shall be vested in the executive branch headed by a Town Council and a Town Administrator.” Town Meetings are held twice a year at the Galvin Middle School. You can read more about the Town Meeting process here

Wakefield residents can view their Massachusetts legislators using this lookup tool.


Wakefield Public Schools:

icon of graduation hat on a bookThe vision of our school department is to prepare students for college, career, and community by providing rich and challenging curriculum, high quality instruction, and educational experiences that meet their individual needs and interests. Educational opportunities within Wakefield Public Schools include:

  • preschool services at the Doyle Early Childhood Education Center
  • K-4 instruction at the Dolbeare, Greenwood, Walton, and Woodville elementary schools
  • grade 5-8  instruction at the Galvin Middle School
  • grade 9-12 instruction at Wakefield High School

The Northeast Metropolitan Regional Vocational School, located in Wakefield, is a four-year, public regional vocational high school that serves 12 communities North of Boston. The P.O.S.T. Academy, in partnership with Reading Public Schools, is a post-secondary program that provides experiential and educational opportunities that promote a successful transition to adulthood.

When the kids are out of school, you’ll find great activities and sports clinics from Wakefield’s Recreation Department.


Online payments:

Residents can pay motor vehicle excise taxes, personal property taxes, real estate taxes, and water and sewer bills online through the UniPay playform. Click here to create a login. Gas and light utilities can be paid via the Wakefield Municipal Gas & Light Department (WMGLD) site here.


Resources during home renovations:

icons of a shovel and brick wallWe know that the purchase of a new home often means renovation and remodeling. It’s important to ensure you obtain the proper permits prior to construction and an inspection after completion. Click to view our Building Department’s electrical, gas fitting, and plumbing applications. Note that building applications are not online and must be obtained at Town Hall. You can make inspection requests via phone by contacting the applicable inspector during business hours.


Senior services:

The Council on Aging provides information, services, and social activities to the citizens of the community 60 years of age and over. Stop by the McCarthy Senior Center on Converse Street where you’ll find offerings like exercise classes, health seminars, movies, social outings, and more.


Dog licenses:

All dogs that have attained the age of six months or older are required by Mass General Law to be licensed annually. Dog licenses are processed through our Town Clerk’s office. Click here for the application.

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