Zoning (Permitted Land Use)

Posted by | March 27, 2012 | TERM | No Comments
Zoning-Real-Estate-Term

Disambiguation: This term is about zoning regulation and permitted land use. Were you looking for Real Estate Zone (Area of a City)?

What Does Zoning Mean?

Zoning is a way of organizing a city into sections. That is, each area or lot will have a designated zoning regulation or ordinance,  meaning only certain types of buildings or land usages will be allowed on that lot – often known as permitted land use.

*Zoning codes are city specific, they are not standard across the province or state. There is no such thing as Alberta real estate zoning codes.

Real Estate Agent Explains Zoning

Sometimes you will hear the phrase, “what is it zoned for?” or “what’s the zoning on this property?” Those are really questions about what the land can be used for. Some areas are strictly permitted for single family homes and nothing else can be built on those lots, whereas other areas are more forgiving and different mixes of buildings can be built. Zoning regulations can be specific or loose depending on the area.

When it comes to Edmonton real estate there three primary zoning regulations: residential, commercial and industrial. There is no such thing as “Alberta zoning regulation”. All municipalities and counties have different zoning regulations, but here is an example of residential zoning codes in Edmonton:

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Abbreviation Zoning Name


RF1 Single Detached Residential
RSL Residential Small Lot
RF2 Low Density Infill
RPL Planned Lot Residential
RF3 Low Density Development
RF4 Semi-detached Residential
RF5 Row Housing
UCRH Urban Character Row Housing
RF6 Medium Density Multiple Family
RA7 Low Rise Apartment
RA8 Medium Rise Apartment
RA9 High Rise Apartment
RR Rural Residential
RMH Mobile Home
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For more information on zoning codes, you can check out the City site. To find out what zoning is like where you live or anywhere else in Edmonton, you can check out the City of Edmonton Maps site and zoom in to see the lots and the current zoning. (only works with Internet Explorer). All zoning information is public.

Why Does It Matter?

Zoning affects what you can and cannot do with a property, so it is a very important part of real estate. If you purchase a large lot to build a duplex, you may not be able to build that duplex depending on the zoning. And zoning can affect what can be done with the land around you as well. If the zoning permits it, someone could build an apartment tower next to you – something you’d probably want to know.

by +Alan F Macdonald REALTOR® | Copyright © – gimme-shelter.com

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About Alan F Macdonald

Alan F Macdonald is a real estate agent with Realty Executives Challenge in Edmonton, Alberta.

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