What Is Zoning? | Century 21

What Is Zoning?

Every piece of land in Australia is subject to zoning regulations, so when you buy a property it’s important to be aware of its zoning and what that means in terms of what you can and can’t do. Can you extend the home, for example, knock down and rebuild or add a second dwelling? If you are not aware of the zoning laws and their implications before purchasing a property, then your future plans for it may well be skittled. 

So, what is zoning and why is it important to know about it?  

Both State and local governments enact zoning laws in order to regulate the use of land and buildings to control growth patterns and manage land use.  These zoning codes set out what is legally permitted on each block of land. 

How zoning could affect you

Major zoning categories include commercial, industrial, mixed-use, residential, agricultural and public use. From there, more specific codes can apply as well as “overlays” relating to heritage, flood mitigation and bushfire requirements. 

If your property is in a heritage zone, for example, there may be significant restrictions on renovations you can make to your home. If the land you are considering purchasing is in a high bushfire danger zone, then building a house on it will attract major additional costs to meet the local council codes. If buying a house in a flood zone, you may find your home and contents insurance premiums are exorbitant or that you cannot insure for flood damage at all. If you are planning to build on flood-affected land you may find that your local council requires that the home be built atop a high mound of earth, or that no building work is allowed at all. 

It’s not only important to know the zoning on the property you are looking to buy. It’s best to spend some time checking on zoning in nearby areas as well. The home you are interested in buying may be zoned as residential but if nearby land is zoned for a specific use, such as a factory or abattoir, or for high-density housing, the property may not be your cup of tea after all. 

Do your research 

Most state governments have websites which allow you to quickly find out the zoning for a particular address. From there, it’s best to speak with a local council planning officer to find out more details, including any potential rezoning in the local area that may be in the works. You don’t want to have grand plans for your new home, only to find out too late that you are not able to progress them or that a high-rise apartment block will be overshadowing you in the future. 

By understanding your local zoning laws, you are equipped with the knowledge you need to buy the right property, knowing what you can change to the current residence, what you can build, how large it can be, what the setbacks from boundaries need to be and much, much more. You can also find out about potential and planned changes in the local area that could impact your lifestyle or the future value of your property in either negative or positive ways. 

If you are buying via a Century 21 real estate agent, you will find that he or she is an expert in zoning laws and planned developments in the local area. If you have engaged a Century 21 agent to sell your property, you will find that he or she will advertise the property correctly for its zoning and be able to fully inform intending buyers on all zoning issues they might ask about. For more information, get in touch with the friendly and experienced Century 21 team today.

Posted by Administrator on 26/07/2017 at 3:57 PM | Categories:

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