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Can I conduct my business from my residential property?

On Behalf of | Mar 10, 2017 | Residential Real Estate

When beginning a small business, not everyone in Fort Lauderdale has the financial ability to buy a new building for its office. Uncertain of the success of their endeavor, people often choose to begin working from their residential property, so they do not incur the cost of purchasing new property. They may decide to make subdivisions for offices or take other steps to utilize their property both for residential and business purposes.

However, when doing so it is very important to ensure compliance with the relevant zoning laws. Generally, property is zoned into commercial and residential uses, so a commercial building cannot be built in a residential area and vice versa. However, when a residential property is turned into a business one, they are still subject to the zoning laws that businesses are restricted by.

Most zoning codes prohibit changes to physical exterior of the house for the purpose of conducting business and prohibit displays or outside storage. They also prohibit or restrict commercial vehicles. When it comes to home businesses, they also impose traffic restrictions such as the number of visitors and the number of employees, in some instances even prohibiting employees altogether. They also prohibit storage and use of hazardous material.

While conducting a business from one’s own home seems like a good way to save costs, if one runs afoul zoning laws it could lead to many legal complexities. It may be beneficial to consider consulting an experienced attorney who can update Fort Lauderdale residents about the zoning laws that are relevant to them.