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Land use and zoning in Kentucky

On Behalf of | Aug 21, 2023 | Real Estate Law |

Local authorities use zoning laws to regulate real estate markets and ensure that all pieces of land in a certain area complement each other. Zoning laws will often specify the type of land use permitted on any specific tract of land. Some common zoning categories include:

  • Residential zoning: Houses, apartments, condos, etc.
  • Commercial zoning: Hotels, shopping centers, office buildings, etc.
  • Industrial zoning: Power plants, warehouses, etc.
  • Rural/agricultural zoning: Farms, ranches, etc.

What do zoning laws cover?

Zoning laws can address several issues, mainly relating to land use. Some of the most common issues covered by zoning laws include:

  • Types of buildings allowed and requirements for buildings (sizing, height, etc.)
  • Number of rooms or units allowed.
  • Building restrictions.
  • Utility lines
  • Lot size
  • Parking
  • Yard size

Zoning disputes

Zoning disputes often occur when Kentucky landowners, governmental entities, and developers disagree on how an area should be zoned or what type of land use is acceptable. Here are a few common reasons for zoning disputes:

  • Nonconforming use of property: Zoning regulations often change over time, so what was once an acceptable use of a property may no longer be acceptable once the law changes. A property owner who fails to adhere to the updated regulations may be liable for their non-conforming use of the property.
  • Exceptions or variances: When a property owner applies for a variance, or exception to the zoning regulations, a governmental entity will have to decide whether to grant or deny the variance. However, a dispute may occur if property owners in the area do not agree with the granting of a variance.
  • Building code violations: A property owner may decide to build a structure that does not comply with the building code regulations.

If you find yourself in the middle of a zoning or real estate dispute, it may be in your best interest to seek legal counsel to resolve the issue quickly and efficiently.