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Understanding zoning variances for commercial properties

On Behalf of | Jan 27, 2024 | Commercial Real Estate |

Zoning variances are important for commercial property owners in California.

These variances allow them to deviate from local zoning regulations. Understanding zoning variances can help owners navigate regulations and make informed decisions about their properties.

What is a zoning variance?

A zoning variance is permission from local authorities to use a property in a way that does not comply with current zoning laws. These laws dictate the use of land, such as for residential, commercial or industrial purposes. Variances are typically granted when strict application of zoning laws would cause undue hardship to the property owner.

How do I obtain a zoning variance?

To obtain a zoning variance in California, property owners must follow a specific process. This usually involves submitting an application to the local zoning board or planning commission. The application must include detailed plans and justifications for the variance request. Property owners may also need to attend public hearings to present their case to the board or commission.

What are potential challenges to getting one?

While zoning variances can provide flexibility for property owners, obtaining approval can be challenging. Boards and commissions typically consider factors such as the impact on neighboring properties and the community as a whole. Property owners may need to address concerns raised by neighbors or community members during the approval process.

Whether developing a property or reimagining an existing one, property owners can expect construction costs to increase by 2% to 4% in 2024. That makes understanding zoning laws and potentially obtaining a variance a key step to avoid additional unneeded hassles and costs.