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In
real estate Real estate is property consisting of land and the buildings on it, along with its natural resource , Malaysia Malaysia ( ; ) is a country in Southeast Asia. The federation, federal constitutional monarchy consists of States and feder ...

real estate
, a lot or plot is a tract or parcel of land owned or meant to be owned by some
owner Ownership is the state or fact of exclusive right In Anglo-Saxon law Anglo-Saxon law (Old English Old English (, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest recorded form of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germa ...

owner
(s). A plot is essentially considered a parcel of
real property In England, English common law, real property, real estate, realty, or immovable property is land which is the property of some person and all structures (also called Land improvement, improvements or Fixture (property law), fixtures) integr ...
in some countries or
immovable property In English common law, real property, real estate, realty, or immovable property is land Land is the solid surface of the Earth that is not permanently covered by water. The vast majority of human activity throughout history has occ ...
(meaning practically the same thing) in other countries. Possible owner(s) of a plot can be one or more
person A person (plural people or persons) is a being that has certain capacities or attributes such as reason Reason is the capacity of consciously applying logic by Logical consequence, drawing conclusions from new or existing information, with the ...

person
(s) or another legal entity, such as a company/
corporation A corporation is an organization—usually a group of people or a company—authorized by the State (polity), state to act as a single entity (a legal entity recognized by private and public law "born out of statute"; a legal person in legal ...

corporation
,
organization An organization, or organisation (Commonwealth English The use of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval England, which has ...

organization
,
government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department ...

government
, or trust. A common form of ownership of a plot is called
fee simple In English law English law is the common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or case law) is the body of law created by judges and similar quasi-judicial tribunals by virtue of being stated in written ...
in some countries. A plot may also be defined as a small area of land that is empty except for a metalled road surface or similar improvement, and it typically all used for the same purpose or is in the same state. An example would be a
car park A parking lot (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the United States. Currently, America ...

car park
or a cultivated garden plot. This article covers plots (more commonly called lots in some countries) as defined parcels of land meant to be owned as units by an owner(s). Like most other types of property, lots or plots owned by private parties are subject to a periodic
property tax A property tax or millage rate is an ad valorem tax An ''ad valorem'' tax (Latin language, Latin for "according to value") is a tax whose amount is based on the value of a transaction or of property. It is typically imposed at the time of a ...
payable by the owners to local governments such as a county or
municipality A municipality is usually a single having status and powers of self-government or jurisdiction as granted by national and regional laws to which it is subordinate. The term ''municipality'' may also mean the governing or ruling body of a gi ...
. These real estate taxes are based on the assessed value of the real property; additional taxes usually apply to transfer of ownership and property sales. Other fees by government are possible for improvements such as curbs and pavements or an
impact fee An impact fee is a fee that is imposed by a local government Local government is a generic term for the lowest tiers of public administration within a particular sovereign state. This particular usage of the word government refers specifically to ...
for building a house on a vacant plot. In
New Zealand New Zealand ( mi, Aotearoa ) is an island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. It consists of two main landmasses—the North Island () and the South Island ()—and more than 700 List of islands of New Zealand, smaller islands, coveri ...

New Zealand
land lots are generally described as sections.


Definition and boundaries

A lot has defined boundaries (or borders) which are documented somewhere, but the boundaries need not be shown on the land itself. Most lots are small enough to be
map A map is a symbol A symbol is a mark, sign, or that indicates, signifies, or is understood as representing an , , or . Symbols allow people to go beyond what is n or seen by creating linkages between otherwise very different s and s. A ...

map
ped as if they are flat, in spite of the curvature of the earth. A characteristic of the size of a lot is its
area Area is the quantity that expresses the extent of a two-dimensional region, shape, or planar lamina, in the plane. Surface area is its analog on the two-dimensional surface of a three-dimensional object. Area can be understood as the am ...

area
. The area is typically determined as if the land is flat and level, although the terrain of the lot may not be flat, i. e, the lot may be hilly. The contour
surface area of radius has surface area . The surface area of a Solid geometry, solid object is a measure of the total area Area is the quantity that expresses the extent of a two-dimensional region, shape, or planar lamina, in the plane. Surface ...

surface area
of the land is changeable and may be too complicated for determining a lot's area. Lots can come in various sizes and shapes. To be considered a single lot, the land described as the "lot" must be contiguous. Two separate parcels are considered two lots, not one. Often a lot is sized for a single
house A house is a single-unit residential building A building, or edifice, is a structure with a roof and walls standing more or less permanently in one place, such as a house or factory. Buildings come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and functio ...

house
or other building. Many lots are rectangular in shape, although other shapes are possible as long as the boundaries are well-defined. Methods of determining or documenting the boundaries of lots include
metes and bounds Metes and bounds is a system or method of describing land, real property In England, English common law, real property, real estate, realty, or immovable property is land which is the property of some person and all structures (also called La ...
,
quadrant method
quadrant method
, and use of a
plat In the United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country in . It consists of 50 , a , five major , 326 , and some . At , it is the world's . The United ...

plat
diagram. Use of the metes and bounds method may be compared to drawing a
polygon In geometry, a polygon () is a plane (mathematics), plane Shape, figure that is described by a finite number of straight line segments connected to form a closed ''polygonal chain'' (or ''polygonal circuit''). The bounded plane region (mathematic ...

polygon
. Metes are points which are like the vertices (corners) of a polygon. Bounds are
line segment 250px, The geometric definition of a closed line segment: the intersection of all points at or to the right of ''A'' with all points at or to the left of ''B'' In geometry Geometry (from the grc, γεωμετρία; ''wikt:γῆ, geo-'' ...

line segment
s between two adjacent metes. Bounds are usually straight lines, but can be curved as long as they are clearly defined. When the boundaries of a lot are not indicated on the lot, a
survey Survey may refer to: Statistics and human research * Statistical survey Survey methodology is "the study of survey methods". As a field of applied statistics concentrating on Survey (human research), human-research surveys, survey methodology s ...

survey
of the lot can be made to determine where the boundaries are according to the lot descriptions or plat diagrams. Formal surveys are done by qualified
surveyor Surveying or land surveying is the technique, profession, art, and science of determining the terrestrial or three-dimensional positions of points and the distances and angles between them. A land surveying professional is called a land surveyo ...

surveyor
s, who can make a diagram or map of the lot showing boundaries, dimensions, and the locations of any structures such as buildings, etc. Such surveys are also used to determine if there are any encroachments to the lot. Surveyors can sometimes place posts at the metes of a lot. The part of the boundary of the lot next to a street or road is the frontage. Developers try to provide at least one side of frontage for every lot, so owners can have transport access to their lots. As the name implies, street frontage determines which side of the lot is the front, with the opposite side being the back. If the lot area is known, from the deed, then the frontage line can be calculated as depth by measuring the width (as area divided by width = depth). Sometimes minor, usually unnamed driveways called
alley An alley or alleyway is a narrow lane In road transport Road transport or road transportation is a type of transport by using roads. Transport on roads can be roughly grouped into the transportation of goods and transportation of p ...

alley
s, usually publicly owned, also provide access to the back of a lot. When alleys are present, garages are often located in back of a lot with access from the alley. Also when there are alleys, garbage collection may take place from the alley. Lots at the corners of a block have two sides of frontage and are called corner lots. Corner lots may have the advantage that a garage can be built with street access from the side, but have the disadvantage that there is more parkway
lawn A lawn is an area of soil-covered land planted with Poaceae, grasses and other durable plants such as clover which are maintained at a short height with a lawnmower (or sometimes grazing animals) and used for aesthetic and recreational pur ...

lawn
to mow and more pavement to shovel snow from. In areas with large blocks, homes are sometimes built in the center of the block. In this situation, the lot will usually include a long driveway to provide transport access. Because the shape is reminiscent of a flag (the home) on a flag pole (the driveway), these lots are called flag lots.


Development and use

Local governments often pass
zoning Zoning is a method of urban planning Urban planning, also known as regional planning, town planning, city planning, or rural planning, is a technical and political process that is focused on the development and design of land use and the bu ...
laws which control what buildings can be built on a lot and what they can be used for. For example, certain areas are zoned for residential buildings such as houses. Other areas can be commercially, agriculturally, or industrially zoned. Sometimes zoning laws establish other restrictions, such as a minimum lot area and/or frontage length for building a house or other building, maximum building size, or minimum setbacks from a lot boundary for building a structure. This is in addition to
building code A building code (also building control or building regulations) is a set of rules that specify the standards for constructed objects such as buildings and non-building structures. Buildings must conform to the code to obtain planning permission, ...
s which must be met. Also, minimum lot sizes and separations must be met when
well A well is an excavation or structure created in the ground by digging, driving, or drilling to access liquid A liquid is a nearly incompressible fluid In physics, a fluid is a substance that continually Deformation (mechanics), defo ...

well
s and
septic system Onsite sewage facilities (OSSF), also called septic systems, are wastewater Wastewater is generated after the use of fresh water Water (chemical formula H2O) is an inorganic, transparent, tasteless, odorless, and nearly colorless chemi ...
s are used. In urban areas,
sewer Sewer may refer to: * Part of sewerage, the infrastructure that conveys sewage *Sanitary sewer, a system of pipes used to transport sewage - several types of sanitary sewers can be distinguished *Storm drain, a collection and transportation system ...
s and water lines often provide service to households. There may also be restrictions based on covenants established by private parties such as the
real estate developer Real estate development, or property development, is a business process, encompassing activities that range from the renovation and re-lease of existing buildings to the purchase of raw Real Estate, land and the sale of developed land or parcels ...
. There may be
easement An easement is a nonpossessory right to use and/or enter onto the real property In England, English common law, real property, real estate, realty, or immovable property is land which is the property of some person and all structures (als ...
s for
utilities A public utility company (usually just utility) is an organization that maintains the infrastructure Infrastructure is the set of fundamental facilities and systems that support the sustainable functionality of households and firms. Serving a ...

utilities
to run water, sewage,
electric power Electric power is the rate, per unit time, at which electrical energy Electrical energy is energy derived from electric potential energy or kinetic energy. When used loosely, ''electrical energy'' refers to energy that has been converted ''f ...
, or
telephone A telephone is a telecommunication Telecommunication is the transmission of information by various types of technologies over wire A wire is a single usually cylindrical A cylinder (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anyt ...

telephone
lines through a lot. Something which is meant to improve the value or usefulness of a lot can be called an
appurtenance An appurtenance is something subordinate to or belonging to another larger, principal entity, that is, an adjunct, satellite or accessory that generally accompanies something else.building A building, or edifice, is a structure with a roof and walls standing more or less permanently in one place, such as a house A house is a single-unit residential building, which may range in complexity from a rudimentary hut to a complex st ...

building
s,
driveway Image:Driveway apron and sloped curb to street.jpg, Driveway apron and sloped curb (road), curb to a public street, all under construction A driveway (also called ''drive'' in UK English) is a type of private road for local access to one or a smal ...

driveway
s, pavements, patios or other surfaces,
well A well is an excavation or structure created in the ground by digging, driving, or drilling to access liquid A liquid is a nearly incompressible fluid In physics, a fluid is a substance that continually Deformation (mechanics), defo ...

well
s,
septic system Onsite sewage facilities (OSSF), also called septic systems, are wastewater Wastewater is generated after the use of fresh water Water (chemical formula H2O) is an inorganic, transparent, tasteless, odorless, and nearly colorless chemi ...
s, signs, and similar improvements which are considered permanently attached to the land in the lot are considered to be real property, usually part of the lot but often parts of a building, such as
condominium A condominium (or condo for short) is a building structure A building, or edifice, is a structure with a roof and walls standing more or less permanently in one place, such as a house or factory. Buildings come in a variety of sizes, shapes, ...
s, are owned separately. Such structures owned by the lot owner(s), as well as easements which help the lot owners or users, can be considered appurtenances to the lot. A lot without such structures can be called a vacant lot, urban prairie, spare ground, an empty lot, or an unimproved or undeveloped lot. Many developers divide a large tract of land into lots as a
subdivision Subdivision may refer to: Arts and entertainment * Subdivision (metre), in music * Subdivision (film), ''Subdivision'' (film), 2009 * "Subdivision", an episode of Prison Break (season 2), ''Prison Break'' (season 2) * Subdivisions (EP), ''Subdivisi ...
. Certain areas of the land are dedicated (given to local government for permanent upkeep) as
street File:Bucuresti, Romania. Strada in Bucuresti.jpg, 250px, Street in downtown Bucharest (Romania) A street is a public thoroughfare in a built environment. It is a public parcel of landform, land adjoining buildings in an urban area, urban context, ...

street
s and sometimes
alley An alley or alleyway is a narrow lane In road transport Road transport or road transportation is a type of transport by using roads. Transport on roads can be roughly grouped into the transportation of goods and transportation of p ...

alley
s for transport and access to lots. Areas between the streets are divided up into lots to be sold to future owners. The layout of the lots is
map A map is a symbol A symbol is a mark, sign, or that indicates, signifies, or is understood as representing an , , or . Symbols allow people to go beyond what is n or seen by creating linkages between otherwise very different s and s. A ...

map
ped on a plat diagram, which is recorded with the government, typically the
county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary The ''Chambers Dictionary'' (''TCD'') was first published by William Chambers (publisher), William and Robert Chambers (publisher bo ...
recorder's office. The blocks between streets and the individual lots in each block are given an identifier, usually a number or letter. Land originally granted by the government was commonly done by documents called
land patent A land patent is a form of letters patent File:1768 transfer of the University to Nancy.jpg, upLetters patent transferring a predecessor of the University of Lorraine to Nancy, France, Nancy in 1768 Letters patent ( la, litterae patentes) (pl ...
s. Lots of land can be sold/bought by the owners or conveyed in other ways. Such
conveyance Conveyance may refer to: * Conveyance, the documentation of the transfer of ownership of land from one party to another—see conveyancing In law, conveyancing is the transfer of legal Title (property), title of real property from one person to ...
s are made by documents called
deed In common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or ) is the body of law created by judges and similar quasi-judicial by virtue of being stated in written opinions. ' is the most-used legal dictionary use ...

deed
s which should be recorded by the government, typically the county recorder's office. Deeds specify the lot by including a
description Description is the pattern of narrative development that aims to make vivid a place, object, character, or group. Description is one of four rhetorical modes Rhetorical modes (also known as modes of discourse) describe the variety, conventions, ...
such as one determined by the "metes and bounds" or quadrant methods, or referring to a lot number and block number in a recorded plat diagram. Deeds often mention that appurtenances to the lot are included in order to convey any structures and other improvements also. In front of many lots in urban areas, there are
pavement
pavement
s, usually publicly owned. Beyond the pavement, there may sometimes be a strip of land called a
road verge A road verge is a strip of grass or plants, and sometimes also trees, located between a roadway (carriageway) and a sidewalk (pavement). Verges are known by dozens of other names, often quite regional; see #Terminology, Terminology, below. The lan ...
, and then the
roadway A carriageway (British English British English (BrE) is the standard dialect of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval England ...
, being the driveable part of the
road A road is a wide way leading from one place to another, typically one with a specially prepared surface which vehicles and bikes can use. Roads consist of one or two roadway A carriageway (British English British English (BrE) is the ...

road
.


Examples

Queen StreetQueen Street may refer to: Australia * Queen Street, Brisbane in Brisbane * Queen Street, Fremantle in Fremantle * Queen Street, Melbourne in Melbourne * Queen Street, in Woollahra, Sydney Britain * Queen Street, Cardiff in Cardiff, Wales * Queen ...
in
Toronto Toronto (, ) is the capital city of the Provinces and territories of Canada, Canadian province of Ontario. With a recorded population of 2,731,571 in 2016 in 2016, it is the List of the largest municipalities in Canada by population, most p ...

Toronto
was referred to as Lot Street before 1837 as it was used by British surveyors to mark ''park lots'' of important land owners in
York, Upper Canada York was a town and second capital of the colony of Upper Canada The Province of Upper Canada (french: link=no, province du Haut-Canada) was a Province, part of The Canadas, British Canada established in 1791 by the Kingdom of Great Brita ...
.


See also

*
Butts and bounds Butts and bounds, shortened form for "abuttals and boundaries" of a property, are the boundary lines delineated between plots of land, usually those which define the end of an estate, as used in legal deeds, titles, etc. These are usually descript ...
*
Cadastre A cadastral map (shortened to cadastre or cadaster) is a comprehensive land recording of the real estate Real estate is property consisting of land and the buildings on it, along with its natural resources such as crops, minerals or water; imm ...

Cadastre
*
City planning Urban planning, also known as regional planning, town planning, city planning, or rural planning, is a technical and political process that is focused on the development and design A design is a plan or specification for the construction of ...
*
Landlocked parcelA landlocked parcel is a real estate plot that has no legal access to a public right of way Right of way is "the legal right, established by usage or grant, to pass along a specific route through grounds or property belonging to another", or "a p ...
*
Site plan A site plan or a plot plan is a type of drawing used by architects An architect is a person who plans, designs and oversees the construction of buildings. To practice architecture means to provide services in connection with the design of buil ...

Site plan
*
Stand level modelling A forest stand is a contiguous Plant community, community of trees sufficiently uniform in composition, structure, Forest inventory#Timber metrics, age, size, class, distribution, spatial arrangement, site quality, condition, or location to disting ...
*
Zoning Zoning is a method of urban planning Urban planning, also known as regional planning, town planning, city planning, or rural planning, is a technical and political process that is focused on the development and design of land use and the bu ...


References

{{DEFAULTSORT:Land Lot Real estate terminology Urban studies and planning terminology Surveying