Zoning: Real estate vocabulary you need to know when buying or selling your home

Rules established by various levels of government dealing with how specific parcels and individual lots of land may be used. This means of controlling land usage is called zoning. Zoning is the setting aside of land for certain predefined purposes and uses. For example, in an urban area some land falls in residential zones and other land in commercial zones. If one wishes to sell or buy property in an area, how the property is zoned, be it commercial or residential, could be an important part of the sale. Each zone type, sometimes refers referred to as a zoning district, has its own sets of restrictions regulating how the land in that zone type may be used. If the property is zoned commercially, one set of restrictions exists; if it’s own residential, different restrictions apply.

One of the main reasons for zoning requirements is to ensure that adjacent lands have compatible uses. Most people would not want a factory built next to their house. Air pollution, noise, and other undesirable factors may make the factory and the house incompatible. To prevent factories from being built next to houses, residential zones are established in which factories cannot be built. Each type a zone has its own restrictions as to the kind of activity that may occur there to ensure that the activities are truly compatible and one does not interfere with the normal use of the other.

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Keith Marshall is a real estate agent with Prudential Grand Valley Realty, serving Kitchener, Waterloo and Cambridge. If you’re thinking of buying or selling your home, please give me a call. I aim to take the stress and mystery out of the home buying and selling process.

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