Most property managers and owners can state their property’s most productive use and reel off a list of potential uses as well. But not all of them know their property’s specific use restrictions, and fewer still realize how those limitations affect the property’s value for tax assessment purposes.

Here are some use restrictions that could allow you to save BIG:

Government Restrictions

Local zoning laws impose the most common use restrictions, and their impact on property uses and potential values is commonly understood. A property zoned for development as a retail power center, for example, will generally have a higher market value than a property which is limited to uses such as auto repair or animal kenneling. Market values are often used to set tax assessment values, so a use restriction that increases or reduces market value will also increase or reduce a property’s tax assessment value.

Semiprivate Restrictions

The complexities of government-imposed restrictions pale in comparison to semiprivate restrictions that are often created during a property’s development. Consider the covenants, conditions and restrictions on use (CC&Rs) imposed when property is subdivided for development.

Private Restrictions

The most common private usage constraint is the deed restriction, which prevents the buyer of a property from using it for certain purposes. The treatment of deed restrictions and other limitations imposed by property owners varies by state.

State, Local Laws Prevail

Clearly, use restrictions — whether government-imposed or privately imposed — will usually impact a property’s market value. But from a property tax perspective, an assessor may or may not consider use restrictions in determining taxable value.

To learn more about Use Restrictions via Cris K. O’Neall and REBusiness Online, Click HERE.

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