2:17 PM 02/09/2013
Trying to go into contract on a one family house built around 1915. There is no C of O or any permits for anything at DoB. The house had a garage in the basement on the back side which has been converted to living space. My lawyer and the Inspector says this is a big deal, my real estate agent says it's not a problem. I want the seller to remedy this situation by making the living space legal, not by returning it to a garage. Currently the basement has a sliding glass door instead of garage doors and is partially finished.
What are the steps necessary for the seller to fix this? Is it even possible?
How much will it cost and how long will it take?
Would I be foolish to ignore this issue?
A lawyer could answer this question better than me, but a few questions come to mind. First, yes, I think it'd be foolish to ignore this issue. Second, would the zoning permit two-family use, and is their enough available FAR to permit the use of the former garage as living space? Third, is the type of construction that was used something that could possibly be legalized if the zoning and available FAR permit this addiotional living space?
2:34 PM 02/09/2013 | 0 Votes
The seller is ulikely going to fix it. Unless there are DOB VIOLATIONS, your mortgage company will be fine with it. Yes it is most likely an illegal addition but the probability of it actually being an issue and you getting a violation is minimal unless you plan to do permitted work and they see it. If you don't plan to file for permitted work then you have nothing to worry about. The same would be true of the 99% of decks on the back of Brooklyn houses...mostly never permitted and most of them don't meet code.
2:56 PM 02/09/2013 | 0 Votes
I agree with DIBS that you're unlikely to get a violation as long as you use the additional living space for your own use. It's only if you intend to rent out the space that you might really NEED to legalize it and my earlier answer was based on my probably incorrect assumption that wanted to use the house as a two family.
3:31 PM 02/09/2013 | 0 Votes
"Will permitted electric and plumbing work bring attention to this potential violation of change of use? "
This one needs to be answered by the experts...an architect or expeditor, or a knowledgeable real estate attorney.
9:55 AM 02/10/2013 | 0 Votes