5:19 PM 05/07/2012
We are in contract to purchase a house that moved the rental unit from the top floor to the basement. The current owners live in the parlor/1st floor and the 2nd floor and their brother lives in the basement. We intend to use the home as a single family residence. We are scheduling an appraisal and I am concerned about having what I think is an illegal unit in the basement with a full kitchen (it is about 2/3 below curb level). Is it necessary to have the stove moved and the exhaust removed for the appraisal?
My understanding is that in a basement (more than 50% below grade) you're allowed to have a "wet bar" (sink / fridge, but no stove) and a 2 piece bathroom (toilet & sink but no shower/tub). So you might want to have the stove moved. If the exhaust was made inconspicuous I don't think you'd need it removed.
The seller's broker may also have advice on this - presumably you have a mortgage contingency so they don't want a problem with the appraisal to kill the deal.
1:27 PM 05/08/2012 | 0 Votes
If the appraisal is just for the value of the home, then tell them to ignore the kitchen. Bklnite is basically right, except that you're talking about a cellar not a basement. A basement is 50% above grade. And a "wet bar" is not necessarily allowed. By code, the only sink allowed is a laundry sink or the lav in a powder room, or in some cases within a full bath. A kitchen sink is not allowed, nor is the gas for the stove.
1:37 PM 05/08/2012 | 0 Votes
on a related note -- I heard recently that the 2-piece bathroom rule was being relaxed and 3-piece baths were somehow acceptable in these spaces? anyone hear similar?
4:01 PM 05/08/2012 | 0 Votes
Not relaxed. Just different. Full bathroom (3-piece) is allowed in a cellar if there are no other rooms besides a boiler room and closets less than 60 square feet, and the cellar is driectly accessible to the apartment above, among a few other things. This is a new ruling, out within the last year or so.
4:31 PM 05/08/2012 | 0 Votes
I would pull the stove out if its a single family- the appraiser will do one of two things- call it a summer kitchen, and state its common to the area or call it illegal and require another fee to go back and confirm its been removed.
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8:55 PM 05/08/2012 | 0 Votes