What You Should Know About Zoning

When building you may be unfamiliar with many of the terms used in the construction arena but this should not become a cause for legal disputes that can impair your property ownership at a later date. One of the most important things to know about is zoning.

What is zoning?

Zoning tells you what your land is permitted to be used for. For example, some lands may be meant for agricultural use and they will be subject to zoning regulations that prevent the land from being used for the construction of a manufacturing unit.  So even before you buy your land, it is important for you to pay attention to the zoning regulations that are in force upon it. During construction, zoning laws come into the picture once again because there may be restrictions on what you can or cannot do.

The problem is that zoning laws may affect every aspect of the building process. If you have inherited the property, you may not have faced any zoning issues until now, when you embark on constructing here.

Keep in mind that you may not get permission to build a business space in a residential area. Even within residential areas, there may be restrictions on construction that apply thanks to zoning laws. For example, in heritage overlay zones, you may not get permission to build an additional floor upon an existing building of yours. This may not be a problem in any other residential area.  Checking about the zonal restrictions that apply to your home or land before you start planning your construction makes a lot of sense and saves you from potential legal trouble.


Yes, zoning laws can and are changed often. In particular, this happens when the authorities decide that a specific zoning law is no longer relevant to an area. Such decisions are taken during council zonal meetings. An amendment process is carried out and the zoning change is brought about if the necessary approvals are forthcoming. This makes it important for you to check with the most recent updates when you are trying to find out the zoning rules for your property.