Request For Variance Sample Letter [7 TIPS]


Request For Variance Sample Letter [7 TIPS]

This article will answer all of your questions about the request for a variance sample letter. 

What is a variance letter?

For an existing nonconforming property, this is a request for a variance on the side yard setback requirement. 

When the local zoning authority receives the letter, they will notify any neighbors or other community stakeholders who may be affected by the variance award.

How do you write a request for a variance?

  1. For the inner address, look up your city hall's official address. On the first line of the inner address information, write "Zoning Board of Appeals." Double-space.
  2. "Dear Members of the Zoning Board of Appeals:" write the salutation, followed by a colon (not a comma). Because your letter will be copied and sent to all members before the public hearing on your variance request, you do not need to specify all of the members by name. Double-space.
  3. The opening paragraph of your letter should be devoted to the message's aim. Always be kind, straightforward, and specific: "I'm writing to request a fence variance for my single-family house, which is located at (provide the address and the town.) Fences cannot be no more than 4 feet height according to current zoning regulations; I sincerely urge that a fence be installed that is 5 feet tall."
  4. The rest of the letter — two to four paragraphs – should be devoted to outlining why you desire the change. Declare your viewpoint clearly and positively, highlighting the advantages of erecting a fence that is taller than the zoning regulation allows. Strive for a level-headed and reasonable tone, and by all means, don't come out as defensive, arrogant, or dismissive of the present zoning restrictions.
  5. Assume the role of a diplomat by emphasizing that you have spoken with your neighbors about your request for a fence variance. If applicable, include a mention to the supportive petition you'll attach with the letter. This one action might be enough to have your request approved; after all, you're proving that you're a polite and conscientious neighbor who cares about "keeping the peace." You may also be protecting the environment by enlisting the help of your neighbors.
  6. Use the final paragraph to make a strong call to action. "I hope you agree that my proposal would make an aesthetically appropriate addition, if not an upgrade to my neighborhood," says confidently, but not arrogantly. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any queries (include your phone number). Thank you for taking the time to examine my request."
  7. Choose an acceptable closure from the following list, which ranges from formal to informal: "Respectfully yours," "Yours very genuinely," "Yours truly," "Honestly yours," "Sincerely," and "Yours sincerely" are all phrases that might be used.

Example of the variance request

Donald Jones, MVP Cheer Development's Owners Representative.

Keller City Planning & 
Zoning Keller City Council

CC: Owners of Real Estate.

MVP Cheer has operated in the warehouse district on Kroger Dr. for a long time. The owners, John and Stacey St. Andria, have been working with Donald Jones Consulting to find a property and complete a Build to Suit project that would allow them to expand and create an atmosphere that is tailored to their needs. To support this initiative, DJCS has teamed up with a small investment group from California. 

Our budget for this project was acceptable, and the likelihood of building seemed extremely possible because we were able to purchase the dirt for a good price. As we've gone through the process of designing this project, we've discovered that the sheer number of needs, as well as the expense of meeting those requirements, may put this project out of reach.

Our goal with these variance petitions is to create a high-quality project that the City of Keller will be happy to approve, and that St. Andria' will be equally proud to be a part of. We do not believe that in our efforts to cut costs, we are undermining the objective of the Keller Building Codes.

The following are our requests:
"The use of stucco, textured concrete blocks (quick brick), colored split-faced blocks, or any other wall surface material shall be noted on the site plan elevations and may be approved by City council at the time of site plan review," according to Ordinance section 9.01 Building Design Standards, Section 2: Non-Commercial Construction Standards, Item.

The proposal for approval of the textured paint on concrete wall panels complies with the intent of ordinance 9.01. Section 2, Item d, s textured paint on concrete blocks until permission. The owner wants an open-span structure with no columns on the inside. Using a metal building frame and outside concrete wall panels, which give outstanding support and structural stability for the metal frame, is the most efficient approach to creating a great-looking structure. 

Texturedturedcan is applied to the concrete wall panels to give them the impression of fine stucco. We feel the planned development will fulfill the objective of the law and provide a truly lovely building outside with the addition of the masonry, which will meet Keller's 50 percent masonry requirement. The concrete panels have a minimum fire rating of one hour.

In terms of sign codes, UDC only allows one attached sign per address.

On three different heights of the structure, we'd want to put the phrases MVP cheer. These signs will be created as backlit channel letters, but if cost is an issue, black plastic letters may be used instead. Permission to place letters not to exceed 24" high – and not to exceed 25' broad on the west elevation. The overall square footage would not exceed 50 square feet. Permission to put lettering not to exceed 18" high – and not to exceed 20' broad – on the north elevation. 

The overall square footage would not exceed 30 square feet. Permission to place letters not to exceed 40" high – and not to exceed 35' broad on the east elevation. The overall square footage would not exceed 123 square feet. We would skip this sign entirely if we couldn't achieve our desired vantage point from 377.

According to UDC's parking ordinance, this project must provide 57 parking places. The code specifies that disability parking cannot be included in the total number of parking spots.

Other development projects have required us to add the entire number of spaces, including disability spaces, to meet the total number of authorized places. We have a total of 57 parking spaces, three of which are handicapped accessible. To comply with UDC, we've been told we'll need to locate three extra places. We'd want to request an exemption to enable the 57 spaces listed on the first set of blueprints. According to the UDC Landscaping Ordinance, 3" caliper trees must be planted on 30" centers throughout the project and within the 10' landscaping buffer.

With detention, parking, and the structure, this project will encompass about 2.5 acres. The structure is located on the property's westernmost edge. We are requesting that the landscaping be authorized in the manner depicted. If the council decides that more trees are required, we will submit a formal request for the following:

South Elevation - The tree requirement be postponed and addressed after the remaining 1.5 acres are created. We are deferring our plans until construction is completed.

East Elevation — With the Rail Road and our Detention, tree placement can and will be a challenge. Installing a sprinkler system this far away from the structure will be difficult. On this elevation, we request that no trees be necessary.

North Height – We can add more trees to this elevation, but only about a quarter of what the existing UDC requires. 

West Elevation – Keep everything as it is.


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