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Are there different types of zoning categories?

In California, there are various types of zoning under the law, which determines the allowable use of a given piece of property and the type of building or business that can be located in an area. Zoning differs depending on whether the land is located in a rural or urban area, and there are subcategories of zones within both urban and rural locations.

In urban areas, there can be different types of residential and business zones. Some residential zones may specify the types of allowable residences, including single-family homes, trailers or multiple-family dwellings. Zones can also be historic ones in which the properties are more than 50 years old and the owners are restricted concerning allowable improvements. Business zones can include commercial zones as well as industrial ones which restrict the types of allowable businesses in the applicable areas. Some zones are mixed ones, including allowable business and residential uses in the same area.

Outside of urban areas, zones may be rural or agricultural. Agricultural zones are normally used by communities in order to preserve land for agricultural uses as opposed to other types of development. Rural zones can be used for farms or ranches, allowing some properties to be specifically allowed to have cattle or other farm animals.

Businesses need to be careful to investigate the various zones in the area in which they are wishing to purchase or lease property. There may be issues with the zone or easements may be required in order to access the desired location. Through careful research and the assistance of experienced legal counsel, a business may be able to make a more informed decision about the desirability of a particular property prior to committing to its purchase or lease.

Source: Findlaw, "Types of Zoning", December 04, 2014

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