Attorneys at Law

Be Informed.

Be informed.

What Zoning Issues Could Affect Your Land Use Rights?

When you are considering buying a property or developing a property you already own, you should speak with a zoning and land use attorney. If you are thinking about starting a business or changing the purpose of a property that you own, you will also need to get professional legal advice in order to find out if your proposed plan for the property is a legal one. 

Talking with a lawyer about zoning and land use is important because the government has imposed significant restrictions and limitations on what land owners can do in certain locations.

Zoning rules are aimed at protecting property values, preventing crime and problems for residents, and maintaining nice areas to live. Unfortunately, these rules can be frustrating if you find that they prevent you from doing what you want to do with your own land. It is best to find out as early as possible in the purchase or development process whether zoning will be a problem for you.

A Conshohocken zoning and land use attorney at Curley & Rothman, LLC understands the rules within the Pennsylvania area about how land can, and cannot, be used. We can provide you with guidance on zoning rules and requirements, and can also help you with securing a variance if you own land and you want to use that land for alternative purposes.  Give us a call as soon as possible to find out more about how we can help you to develop or use a piece of property in the way that you see fit.

What Zoning Issues Can Affect Your Use of the Land

The Borough of Conshohocken, PA addresses zoning in Chapter 27.  According to the relevant law: "If the Zoning Officer determines that an application is in compliance with the provisions of this Chapter, it shall be his/her duty to issue the appropriate permit; and if he/she determines that an application is not in compliance with the provisions of this Chapter, it shall be his/her duty to refuse the permit, in which case he/she shall inform the applicant of their right to appeal to the Zoning Hearing Board for relief."

This means that as long as your proposed development or use of a land complies with the local zoning requirements for the area, the Zoning Officer should issue you a permit for your desired purpose. The problems that people have with zoning, however, can arise when zoning restricts or limits them from doing something that they would like to do with their property.

Zoning generally divides areas into residential, commercial, and industrial zones. This means if you buy land where many people live, you may not be able to start a business there and if you buy land where there are many retail stores you may not be able to start a factory there.

Zoning restrictions can also go far beyond just detailing the broad use of the property. Depending upon local laws in a particular area, zoning may impose requirements on:

  • Minimum lot sizes
  • The total number of buildings permitted to be built
  • Where utility liens have to be located
  • What accessory buildings can be built
  • How far back from the street a property must be placed
  • How much open space there must be on each side of a property line
  • The height of any structures
  • The number of rooms a structure can contain
  • Square footage
  • Off-street parking
  • Lot frontage

These are just some of the many different types of restrictions that property owners may have to deal with when considering developing a specific plot of land or when considering expanding or changing the use of a property.

How Can a Conshohocken Zoning and Land Use Attorney Help?

If you require any assistance with zoning issues or want guidance on your rights as a potential or current land owner, you need to get professional advice from a Conshohocken zoning and land use attorney. It is advisable to talk with a lawyer about your proposed use of land before you make a property purchase, or before you begin to develop or use your property for any given purchase. By getting professional help, you'll understand your rights and obligations early in the process before money is spent and you can get assistance in seeking a variance if you need one.

Curley & Rothman, LLC is here and ready to help with zoning and land use issues. Give us a call at 610-834-8819 or contact us today to schedule your consultation and learn more about how we can assist property owners and developers.

Real EstateScott Rothman