Purchasing Property near Water

And by water - I mean a lake, a stream, a wetland of any sort...

While living near water is relaxing, beautiful, and energizing, there are environmental restrictions you want to be very aware off BEFORE you purchase, build or renovate.

Transactions that involves a lake or a “stream” (as defined below) on the subject property or neighboring property should be aware that the Riparian Areas Regulation (RAR) could have a significant effect on the value and potential use or development of the property because of legislated building/development setbacks and other requirements protecting riparian areas, including riparian vegetation and fish habitat. A “stream” in the province of BC is broadly defined in the RAR to include the following that provides fish habitat: (a) a watercourse, whether it usually contains water or not; (b) a pond, lake, river, creek or brook; (c) a ditch, spring or wetland that is connected by surface flow to something referred to in paragraph (a) or (b); Riparian vegetation and streams are protected by the Federal Fisheries Act; the Provincial Fish Protection Act, and the Water Act. Municipal bylaws may also apply. When considering buying, selling or developing property that is impacted by the legislation individuals are advised to seek independent professional advice from Environmental Consultants and governing bodies. If the RAR applies to a property, the local government will require the riparian area and development to first be assessed by a Qualified Environmental Professional (QEP), such as a Registered Professional Biologist (R.P.Bio.), to determine a Streamside Protection and Enhancement Area (SPEA), which is defined as a setback that protects degradation of fish habitat. The SPEA is delineated by a QEP as part of the RAR to protect fish habitat from land alteration, including consideration of sediment and erosion control, damage or alteration of vegetation, and trails and landscaping. For a list of regional districts and municipalities where the RAR applies, visit:  www.env.gov.bc.ca/habitat/fish_protection_act/ripa... For more information about riparian areas, visit:  www.env.gov.bc.ca/habitat/fish_protection_act/ripa...www.livingbywater.cawww.stewardshipcentre.bc.ca

Carla Dahlen

Carla Dahlen

Personal Real Estate Corporation
CENTURY 21 Executives Realty Ltd.
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