Residential Zoning made easy

Herewith a basic summary of residential zoning to pass on to buyers and sellers.

Regarding residential property, there are 4 categories, and restrictions on the building/s to be constructed on the property. These restrictions are determined in terms of 3 elements known as coverage, F.A.R. & density.
1. Coverage is the maximum area of land on which one is permitted to build;
2. Floor Area Ration (F.A.R.) or Bulk is the maximum floor area under roof allowed;
3. Density is the number of dwellings permitted per hectare (10 000 square metres).

Residential zoning made easy

Residential 1:
This is the zoning which stipulates that properties can have a density of only one dwelling per stand/erf (i.e. a house). An example of this is as follows: Only one house can be built on the property in terms of this zoning. Coverage permitted is 40%, which means that on a
1 000m² stand one can build a dwelling covering a maximum of 400m², including garages & outhouses. If one is given the right to build a two/three-storeyed home, one can cover up to 400m² per storey. Therefore, the footprint cannot be more than 400m².

Residential 2:
This zoning allows a density of between 10 & 20 dwellings per hectare. Note that a hectare is 10 000m² (or just less than 2.5 acres). This is an ideal zoning for cluster housing or townhouse complexes.

Residential 3: 
This zoning permits a density of between 21 & 40 dwellings per hectare, and is usually used for smaller townhouse or cluster complexes. An example of this is as follows: On a 26 000m² property, 40% coverage amounts to 10 400m² with a density of 25 units per hectare. The developer on this site could then typically build 65 townhouses (2.6 hectares x 25) of 160m² each (that is the total coverage of  10 400m² divided by the 65 units) over two floors – 100m² at ground level (including a double garage) and 60m² upstairs.

Residential 4:
This zoning offers between 41 & 120 dwellings per hectare, and caters for the construction of blocks of flats because of its tight density.

Cherie Eilertsen

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