800 Kennesaw Avenue, Suite 400, Marietta, Georgia 30060
THE LANDLORD'S LAWYER sm 770.426.4619 THE LANDLORD'S LAWYER sm 770.426.4619

Zoning Attorneys Secure Variances for Georgia Businesses

Landlord lawyers cut through the red tape when you need a variance

How does my company go about obtaining a variance?

Our attorneys guide you through the process of obtaining a variance in Marietta and other cities and counties throughout Georgia. Since zoning is a local matter, the process of obtaining a zoning variance depends on the municipality in which your project will be situated.  For instance, in Marietta the process requires a:

  • $250 application fee
  • Completed notarized application
  • Legal description of property
  • Site plan
    • The plan must be prepared by a state-registered architect, engineer or land surveyor whose seal is affixed to the plan.
    • Site plans must clearly show all relevant existing conditions as well as the proposed additions to the property.
  • Copy of current tax bill with proof of payment
  • Document authorizing you to submit the application by the property owners if you are not the owner

Why would I need a variance?

Variances are needed in a wide range of situations. A common purpose for a variance is to open a retail store or other small business in a residential neighborhood. Other variances our attorneys have secured include:

  • A set-back exception to allow ingress or egress on a particularly narrow lot
  • Permitting the placement of a sign to advertise the business
  • Increasing the height or size of a sign

When you are seeking a variance, you need to know the nature of the municipality’s zoning scheme. The most common zoning plans are those that are:

  • Use-based — A use-based scheme either permits only certain uses for a real estate parcel or, conversely, restricts only certain uses. A use variance would allow a parcel to be used for a purpose other than that for which it is zoned.  A coffee shop would, for example, need a use variance to open in a neighborhood that’s zoned residential.
  • Characteristic-based — A characteristic-based zoning scheme focuses on restricting certain aspects of projects, such as building height, parking availability and sign height.  A characteristic variance would allow a project to have a characteristic that the zoning plan would otherwise prohibit.  You would need a characteristic variance, for example, to build a four-story building in an area that is zoned for two-story buildings.

Contact us for experienced assistance with zoning variances

For 31 years, the attorneys at Wiles & Wiles, LLP have helped commercial property owners secure variances to meet their goals. If you have zoning or variance concerns, contact us at 770.426.4619 or online.


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