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Philadelphia Immigration Lawyer > > General > What to Do If You Purchased a Home With a Zoning Violation?

What to Do If You Purchased a Home With a Zoning Violation?

If a home was purchased with good faith belief that it has no zoning violations and the zoning board failed to act for an extended period of time, you may need a variance. A variance is used for properties with prior non-conforming use. A variance is a means to get relief from the strict application of the zoning ordinance to fit the land it regulates.

How to obtain a zoning variance:

  • Apply for a zoning or registration permit from the Department of Licenses and Inspection.
  • If the application is rejected, you have 30 days to appeal to the Zoning Board.
  • While appeal is being scheduled, you need to get support from your neighborhood and community.
  • The Zoning Board will schedule a hearing to decide whether or not to grant the variance.

In order to get a variance, the applicant must show that:

  • An unnecessary hardship will result if the variance is denied due to the unique physical circumstances or conditions of the property.
  • The hardship was not inflicted by the person seeking the variance.
  • The variance won’t alter the essential character of the neighborhood nor be detrimental to the public welfare.
  • The reason for granting the variance will be substantial, serious, and compelling.

The person seeking the variance has a heavy burden and variances are only granted under exceptional circumstances.

Consulting an attorney when seeking a variance will allow for the best chances of approval. At Ellenberg Law Group, our lawyers have extensive experience handling these cases and we are here as your legal resource to answer any questions or concerns you may have. Contact our law firm now to arrange your completely confidential initial legal consultation. With a legal office in Philadelphia, we provide legal services to businesses throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania, including in Montgomery County, Chester County, and Bucks County.

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