Definition of "Buffer zone"

Steve Littig real estate agent
Steve Littig, Real Estate Agent Simply Vegas

In short, a Buffer zone is how it’s called the area or strip of land that separates one land use from another.

But let’s expand this buffer zone definition a little bit because when understanding this term it’s more enlightening to get to the bottom of the “why” than of the “what”.

A buffer zone is a sort of neutral vacant area over which, most of the times, governments establish rules prohibiting real estate development of any kind. The reasons behind their creation and enforcement are generally connected with safety. Let’s see some examples of the use of buffer zones as:

  • Health precaution:  between a nuclear power plant and a housing community there is likely to exist a buffer area, so that, in the case of an industrial accident, the radiation won’t affect people so quickly; hoping to ensure there’s a long way until it reaches any house and materials.
  • Security precaution: prisons, for instance, have a long buffer area so - in the event of prisoners escaping - law-enforcement can easily follow the escapees because they don’t have places to hide, nor people to take hostage nearby.
  • Sovereignty precaution: border areas are buffer zones by nature because they separate lands that have the same use but are under different commands. Those are usually jointly administrated so there’s no need of accusing people of trespassing left and right because they accidentally tripped to the other side.
  • Nature conservation: areas that have biodiversity importance that need to be protected might also have imposed a buffer zone around it to protect from negative environmental or human influences.

Real Estate Tips:

Do you now understand how the “why” is so vital when trying to understand the buffer zone definition? With that in mind, we recommend you access our Real Estate Questions page, because some of the glossary terms will reveal another shade of them in the form of a question. No knowledge is static!

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