Nonconforming lots were defined in the Orlando, Florida, zoning ordinance that became effective on Sept. 16, 1991. They are described as lots where there is an agreement for deed or shown on a plot map before that date. They may also be lots that conformed to codes before that date. If you are considering purchasing a nonconforming lot, then you face particular restrictions on what you can do with the property.
Reduction in size
The government is the only entity that can change a nonconforming lot’s width or depth. You cannot buy two adjacent lots and put them together to create a lot that has less width or depth than each of the properties currently have separately. If two lots were joined together before Feb. 4, 1959, you cannot unbind the lots and create two separate parcels. If you are thinking of changing the lot’s size in any way, you may want to talk to a real estate attorney.
What can you do with a nonconforming lot?
If you want to do anything but build a home on the lot in most of the city, you will need to submit a Master Plan to the city for approval. If you are looking to build a home, you can build a one- or two-story home on a nonconforming lot. The home may cover no more than 50% of the lot size. In addition, no more than 50% of the house facing any street can be a garage facade. Storage-type buildings behind the home do not count toward this total. The structure must meet the Appearance Code and comply with all zoning regulations for that area.
Can you expand a building on a nonconforming lot?
Generally, you cannot expand a building on a nonconforming lot. The amount of land covered by the building and for vehicular use must be the same.
Many other rules govern what you can and cannot do with a nonconforming lot. An experienced attorney may help you be an educated consumer before buying real estate.