How would you have like to go to the City of Scottsdale and ask for a permit to renovate and expand your home – you know, improve the neighborhood – and the City says, ‘Sure, but you have to tear down your master bedroom’?

This is good news.

It’s a potential problem for nearly 6,000 homes in the R1-7 zoning district “” single family residential homes with a minimum lot size of 7,000 square feet “” south of Indian Bend Road. Many of those homes were developed under Maricopa County development standards, and then annexed into Scottsdale.

City officials did a study about a year ago and determined about 40 percent of the 14,000 homes in the zoning district ran afoul of city code. The nonconformance issues primarily involve setback encroachments “” or having portions of a structure built closer to the property lines than city zoning law allowed.

For instance, under the previous rules, if a home sits partially within a setback, and the owner wants to make a major improvement to the house, such as adding a bedroom or expanding the garage, the offending portions of the home would have to be relocated.

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