Extra acreage with a potential property

2 Replies

Hello everybody, I have a potential rental property that is sitting on just over 2.5 acres most of which is wooded land. How do I go about finding if I’m able to zone this into separate properties to sell separately? Any advice helps! Thank you

Call your local municipality's zoning office.  They can tell you what zone you are in and the minimum lot size.  Ask for the setback requirements as well.  They should give you a reference to the online zoning code that has all of this information.  The minimum lot size will be your first criteria.  You have no options if the minimum is 2.5 acres and best case of 5 lots if it is 0.5 acres.

If the minimum is half or less of your current lot size, subdivision is possible but maybe not desirable.  Draw out your lot and try manually subdividing it in ways that make sense to see if you can divide it into some number of lots.  You can't build in or near wetlands and usually can't build on steep slopes.  This will tell you what is possible with no engineering knowledge and no expense.

Next, apply your setbacks.  You can't build in a setback.  If your newly subdivided lots are 150 feet wide and you have 50' setback requirements, then you can build a 50' wide house.  You will have front, rear and side yard setbacks.  Make sure your lots contain enough space to build something inside the setbacks.  You will need to reduce the number of lots if you don't have a large enough building envelope.

Lastly, place your driveways to come and go from these lots.  You may want a common driveway or use all separate driveways.

I think everything above can be done by anyone with a little bit of research.  It isn't exact, but will give you an idea of what is feasible.  The next step is an appointment with an engineering firm if you want a professional to review your sketch plan and the ordinances to determine if your plan is valid.

Good luck!

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