The rules of the road in the commercial real estate industry are constantly changing. Zoning and subdivision rules are no exception, and changes to these rules can create complications that can threaten financing, permitting, timing, and even the successful completion of the project. Ensuring strict compliance with all available regulations is a critical component of ensuring that a project is completed in a timely manner. Your title company can be a key partner when it comes to ensuring that your commercial real estate project is successful, timely, and profitable. Learn more about how a title company can assist you with subdivision and zoning assistance.
What Is Zoning?
Zoning laws and regulations govern the use of land within a city, county, or state. In general, zoning dictates what kinds of buildings can be constructed, and where, within municipal borders. Zoning laws can regulate everything from housing density to the location of different types of businesses, dictating even requirements like parking and building height. As such, these rules impact every type of development, from the construction of a residential development to the arrangement and layout of office space.
Zoning laws are generally rooted in considerations of health and safety, limiting the proximity of residential space to polluting or dangerous businesses. It can also be used to preserve the character of different areas, designating residential areas as distinct from business districts, and vice versa. Zoning is also used to promote economic development, manage traffic congestion, limit noise, light, and pollution, and protect valuable resources such as open space.
How Does Zoning Impact Development?
Zoning laws are the ultimate authority regarding how a piece of land can be changed and developed, and they are not static. Ultimately, changes to zoning regulations can impact a project at every stage of the development process — the zoning of a particular parcel or parcels can even change during this process. Having partners who understand the importance of these rules and the ways in which they can impact a project is critical, and that means engaging attorneys, agents, and title partners who understand not only your initial due diligence but who can be ongoing partners throughout the process from contract to close.
A zoning compliance report, an essential part of the development process, is a comprehensive overview of the zoning conditions of a property that is the target of an acquisition or refinance. Typically, an attorney for the buyer or lender on a commercial property is responsible, in partnership with the title company and others involved in due diligence, for preparing and updating this report. A title company with attorneys on-staff can ensure that zoning due diligence is completed and assist with the completion and updating of this report, ensuring that the project proceeds without interruption.
What Is Subdivision Assistance?
Subdivision is the division of a large tract of land into smaller parcels to allow for development and sale of those smaller individual parcels. This process involves meeting the permitting and zoning requirements of the jurisdiction, as well as careful examination and review of the title to the larger parcel and completion and recording of any records necessary to ensure that future purchasers of subdivided parcels receive clear title to the new lots.
This process is never straightforward, and an experienced, knowledgeable title agent is an essential partner. Issues such as mineral or resource rights, deed restrictions, easements and encroachments, incomplete or inaccurate boundary documents, or covenants, conditions, and restrictions (CC&Rs) which can impact the development of the land are common, and must be resolved before subdivision can proceed. The title insurance company will ensure that any requirements or conditions are satisfied, providing a policy of title insurance that includes a subdivision endorsement, in which the title insurance policy insures against loss or damage caused by the failure of the newly subdivided land “to constitute a lawfully created parcel according to the subdivision statutes and local subdivision ordinances applicable to the Land.”
How Your Title Partner Can Help
Ensuring that you’re working with a seasoned team that understands the unique challenges of commercial real estate transactions is essential. When you partner with Landtrust Title Services, you have access to a team of responsive, experienced professionals, including on-staff attorneys, who are there for you whenever you need them.
The team at Landtrust Title will ensure on-time closings, flexible underwriting, quick searches, easier online exams, and an unparalleled concierge service to save you time — giving you more time to focus on what you do best: helping your clients.
Landtrust Title: Commercial Title Services Done Differently
At Landtrust Title, we understand that commercial title requires a different kind of expertise — you need a partner you can trust to handle deals of every size and level of complexity, without ever treating you like a number. That’s where our team of highly experienced title professionals comes in. With Landtrust, you’ve got someone in the trenches with you, focused on solving problems and making sure every deal is closed smoothly. We understand the ins and outs of commercial title and construction services — and how difficult it can be to get real support you can rely on. That’s why we’re doing things differently. We work alongside you as your advocates, offering personalized attention and creative solutions that ensure your deal gets done perfectly and on time, every time. Think of us as your very own title team. Start the conversation by contacting us at [email protected] or by phone at (312) 528-9210.