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7 things to know about property rezoning:

Property Rezoning: What You Need To Know

Zoning laws are the necessary rules that dictate how we can and can’t use our property. They help minimize conflict between landowners and users by preventing things like putting a loud factory in a residential neighborhood. Zoning laws vary in every area and can cover building height, density, yard setbacks, and more.

There are several types of zoning to keep areas homogenous in their land use, such as residential, commercial, industrial, agricultural, rural, historical, and more. However, the needs of areas change over time which presents opportunities for landowners.

What happens when your city wants to grow and needs more housing? Or when residents feel there are too many apartment complexes in one part of town? Or when residents demand a grocery store?

Zoning changes over time to accommodate the needs of residents and provide better uses for the land.

How to Rezone Property

Rezoning property can be a long, challenging, and expensive process that doesn’t guarantee your desired outcome. The regulators and residents in your area may not agree with your ideas for the best use of the land. It is important to identify the benefits of rezoning a property that can be highly profitable and beneficial to everyone. Every area is unique when it comes to zoning. You may have to undergo several rounds of legislation, hearings, and meetings to gain approval to rezone your property.

Here are some important steps as a general guide to getting your property rezoned.

1) Survey your property and surrounding area

Do a general survey of your property and the surrounding land. You may be in a residential area with only houses and no shops. You could be in a mixed-use area with offices, shops, apartment buildings, and houses. Pay attention to how your area seems to be changing with the times. You will need a professional land survey to rezone.

2) Do your research on the rules in your area

Learning the zoning rules in your area is critical to following the steps to rezoning in the most efficient way possible. Online research of your area’s government sites, is the best way to get started.

3) Talk with your surrounding neighbors or landowners

They will have a say in your rezoning process. It is essential to talk with them and discuss your intentions with your property. Increased traffic, noise, and other new external factors on your land will affect them as well, and they won’t always be willing to go along with your changes. Take note if the opinion is overwhelmingly positive, negative, or neutral as this will greatly influence how officials will view your case.

4) Application to rezone

Once you have a good idea of the current zoning rules and have done your due diligence it’s time to open a rezoning application with your local planning department. Meet with them to discuss what you want and start the paperwork process. Your planning authority will ask for a number of things including, a land survey, maps, site plans, traffic studies, and more. You will also need to pay a fee that could range from hundreds to thousands of dollars.

5) Planning Review

The planning department will review the materials that you have presented and make a recommendation to the higher legislative bodies. This will take a while. Provide everything they need and revise your plans as necessary for the best chance of getting your desired results.

6) Meeting with the planning commission

Next, you will meet with the planning commission to go over any questions or concerns they may have with your request. Remember this will be a public meeting where your neighbors can come to air their grievances as well. You should be ready to answer any questions and address concerns in a friendly, professional, and informed manner.

7) Meeting with the governing body

You are almost to the finish line in getting your property rezoned. Your final step is taking your case to rezone before a legislative body in a public hearing before they vote. This is another opportunity for those who may be against you to be heard, so keep this in mind. You will have a chance to speak and address concerns, and then your case will be put to a vote. If they vote to allow your property to be rezoned, you can move forward with the plans for your property. If they vote in the negative, you will need to wait a year or longer before trying again.

To Help build you navigate this process with DCRA and help build your dream project, contact our team of experts at

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