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Maximize Space with Zero Lot Line Homes

May 26, 2016 | Peter-John Woolf

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As the availability of land decreases, the types of homes available in Calgary have changed. One of the more recent innovations is zero lot line homes. These types of properties are already common in other cities but are now available in Calgary too.

With the addition of more housing options, we often find that there is some confusion among homebuyers about new types of homes. This is especially true of zero lot line homes because it is the zoning of the property and not necessarily a type of home. If you're deciding on whether to purchase this type of property, then this article will help explain what it is and the value in owning a zero lot line home.

What is a Zero Lot Line Home?

Maximize Space with Zero Lot Line HomesIn the past, homes built in Calgary have been constructed with a 1.2 meter side yard. Now with the approval of zero lot line homes on some properties, one or more walls of a house can be built on the edge of the property line.

Shifting the house over from the middle of the property to the edge means that the lot width required can now be decreased. Reducing the width allows developers to include an extra home in their communities thus increasing the density, which is a good thing for the city and home buyers. Buyers benefit because they can buy a smaller, less expensive lot and build a larger house on it than they could previously.

So, it is not surprising that zero lot line houses are gaining in popularity with home buyers because they maximize the available space on your property. It also eliminates the awkward space between properties and requires less yard work because only one side of the property needs to be maintained. Only paying for the more usable land in the front and back of the property, makes zero lot line homes more efficient and affordable.

What Type of Home can be Built on a Zero Lot Line Property?

Maximize Space with Zero Lot Line HomesWhile some condos and other housing types are considered zero lot line properties, free-standing zero lot line houses are typically laned homes.

A laned house is one where the garage is located at the back of the property. Some home buyers prefer this type of house because it allows them to create a more inviting front exterior with a larger front porch, and it allows for conveniences such as more on-street parking.

In order to build zero lot line homes, new home builders must comply with specific City of Calgary requirements in new communities. Some of them are discussed in further detail on the CHBA website: http://www.chbacalgary.com/post/2436506-explore-zero-lot-line-housing-in-new-communities.

What is the Difference Between Duplex & Zero Lot Line Houses?

The availability of zero lot line homes can sometimes blur the line between them and duplex houses. So the first step is to define a duplex in order to compare them.

A duplex is a building containing two single-family homes. Duplexes can be built side-by-side or one on top of the other. Typically, duplexes in new home communities in Calgary are built side-by-side.

In a duplex, the two families in each home will share a wall. And, this is where a zero lot line home differs. While one side (i.e. one wall) of the home is on the property line for a zero lot line house, it is not attached to the house beside it like a duplex. Zero lot line homes are still separate buildings.

Zero lot line homes offer many benefits and can be a great deal but it is also important to find out about how they're going to be incorporated into a community. Our Area Managers know what regulations and easement restriction are in place in their community and the surrounding communities so that you get all the facts.

When choosing your next home, it is important to consider all your options and choose the best one for you and your family.