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zoning regulations?

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  • zoning regulations?

    So I called the zoning people last week to see if I can convert my garage into a grooming salon. But the guy there was a jerk it seemed and refused to answer any ?'s I had. He said he would look into it. But he thinks it is residential zoning. But wouldnt I still be able to get a grooming salon even a small one? He said well, I would have to go in front of the planning committee or whatever it is, but he said they are not nice people(I dont really care about that, since this guy was a jerk anyways). And he refused to tell me what I would need to do or what I need to have when I go in there. My husband keeps saying just do it as a hobby and then they cant say anything. But I dont know, just not sure what to do. I dont even know what other ?'s to ask. I dont know if the guy just wasnt taking me seriously (I sound like I am 5 on the phone, lol) I just dont know. Any help would be great. Advice please!! I am calling back tomorrow or friday!! thanx

  • #2
    Ask to speak to someone else in zoning dept. for your city. All they usually need is your address, they'll go into the computer to see what your zone designation is, and they can tell you what you can & can't do for a business on your property,eg. outbuildings,etc, and how much sq. footage it can encompass. Sounds like the guy you were talking to was just being a tool.


    • #3
      Go down to the town hall and find the building inspector's office. Ask them to show you a map of how the town is zoned. You can find your address and see which category your area falls into. It's usually all "A" is residential, "B" commercial and then "C" or whatever letter for split and so forth. In our area if you are not zoned for commercial you have to have a variance which is not easy. It would be well worth your time to have legal representation if you go in front of a planning or zoning board. Find a lawyer w/ real estate experience. The boards are usually made up of local citizens who can put you through the WRINGER! A good lawyer can interpret the law and cut through the nonsense. Don't know where you are located but in our area this stuff is serious and it's tough to get around it. Hope it works out for you!


      • #4
        Planning and Zoning

        Planning and zoning board meetings are usually open to the public. Going to one and listening will help you understand the process.


        • #5
          Most of the time if your are zoned Resident, you can not have a business that has traffic. Home businesses usually do not have "traffic", grooming would involve traffic to and from twice for each client. In some cases , that is too much traffic. A hobby usually does not create traffic...


          • #6

            State, counties, and townships differ so much its not funny.
            Some you don't need anything and can do whatever you want.
            Some its basicly impossible.

            In my old township (same county) I had to convert ag residental land to commecial, even though the stable we built was agricultural. That was just a 450.00 rezone hearing, with neighbor notification. They pretty much just want some money. Even if neighbors show up to complain, unless they deem you a danger to the neighborhood, they can't really stop you. It will come to a vote anyhow.
            In this township, its a smaller town and since I am zoned suburban 2,
            which means suburban but over three miles from town, I just needed a
            permit for a home business, which is already permited. They just want to know your not bathing dogs in a stock tank in your back yard.
            It cost 250.00
            and I still had to notify neighbors, and run a legal add in the paper.
            Nobody cared a flip what I wanted to do. I think the more outside of a town you are, the better your chances, but it sure is worth the try.
            The lack of overhead at home, makes it your best bet.


            • #7
              Perhaps you can do "pickups" to avoid the traffic issue. Have a small groom shop in your garage, do not have any signage out front -- advertise, but do it more like mobile groomer would, without your address, just the phone number. When you get calls explain how you operate, i.e., appointment only and you pick up and drop off the dogs. People would be welcome to come and check out your salon if they wanted, but traffic would be at a minimum.

              This would more than likely keep you below the radar and unless someone complained no one at city hall would even know. And by the time it became an issue you may even have a large enough client base that you could either go mobile or open a store front salon.


              • #8

                I agree...go to the P&Z/code enforcement and speak to someone face to face. They should be helpful to you. A code enforcement officer SHOULD know the law to the letter and should be able to provide you with an exact copy of the law for your town. As an example, in our town, a person is allowed to have a home-based business as long as it does not encompass more than 25% of the home. Lol, now honey, there ain't no one who has time to go around and make sure you have no more than 25% in your house, and frankly, no one here cares. The other stipulation is that you may not have any signage representing your home-based business. I can understand the point of zoning restrictions...the main point being they don't want residential streets congested with business traffic, so it makes sense. Update when you find out something.