Can the a City demolish a house that has been under remodel for longer than intended because of financial hardships, even though the owner has proven that work has continued and has complied with every "reasonable" request?
Hello, I'm John and I am happy to help. If I am away, I am working with another customer or researching your answer. The botXXX XXne is "yes." City permits have certain limitations (time limitations and othewise). If a house is not completed within the requirements of the permits (and any reasonable extensions granted by the city) and the incomplete house is, among other things, a danger to the public, the city could require its demolition.
What are my options because the house to scheduled to be finished in August?
Have you requested an extension?
Apparently the extension request was denied. What reasons were given for the denial. When were you required to complete the home?
And on the day of inspection the work crew didn't have the debris cleaned up in back of house which is out of sight.
I made an appeal which was denied bu they gave me an extension on time to have things to the liking
the problem is that I have been in school and cannot be there to supervise
So you do, in fact, have an extension to get things to their liking... correct?
I as asked for more time but they only gave me 6 months
the deadline was May 4th
but before May 4th I had been in compliance
Sir, I practice in this area of the law, and a 6 month extension is exceptionally generous.
Lets work within this 6 month extension.
What must you do within this six months?
key word was "was"
Please explain what you mean by "was."
Today is May 10th
May 4th was the 6 month deadline
Oh, Ok. I see.
When they did their second inspection
During that time some debris has accumulated in the back yard
WHILE, work is continuing on the house
I was going to talk about getting an attorney and seeking a temporary restraining order against the city on the basis of acting in an arbitrary and capricious manner; but, that will not fly.
The city has already given you generous extensions.
But I told them that the 6 months was not enough
Lets look at this from another ange.
I'm still confused.
When did the 6 months start and end?
it ended last friday
That is the day they did the second inspection
and you are talking about a single family home, not a building... correct
I had talked to their correspondent several times before that warning them that I would not be able to make that specific date
Yes my home that I can't live in because the town is abandoned and their is no work
sir, you will be facing an uphill battle.
I have someone already their cleaning up the site as we speak
In this type of work, the town has already demonstrated that it has given you ample extensions.
Has the town threatened to demolish your home?
Yes but it wasn't reasonable considering the circumstances
The house has been in disrepair for 30 years
I bought it in 2006
Started construction in 2009
Has the city threatened to demolish your home?
I know you are frustrated; but, in order to help you, I need you to answer my questions.
They have cleary stated that it is their right and their intentions if I don't do anything
I asked for 8 months because I am a full time student and father and work part time and the house is 5 hours away
From what you are telling me, the city is well within its rights to do this. I realize you believe that, under the circumstances, the extension was unreasonable. The city is concerned with the general welfare of the public. Regardless of your financial circumstances, it must act in the best interest of the general public.
your issues with work and school are irrelevant when it comes to the city's decisions.
Does this make sense?
My neighbors have written the city complaining about how they are treating us
Yes I understand
So anything you propose must address the city's concern with promoting the general welfare.
Whatever you do, you must address this.
Perhaps making a proposal to the city to board up the house, remove all debris, and making the house safe would be a good start.
Perhaps trying to sell the house to someone who can afford to complete the renovations.
I have a Contractor that is going to finish it by August
its a 300,000.00 remodel
perhaps bringing in a partner who has the resources to timely complete the project.
Did the city know this when it denied your application?
When I made my appeal no one listened to me
You think they would since I was a contractor in the area
did you tell them you had a contract who would finish this by August?
At this stage, I would retain legal counsel to get an temp injunction against the city for 3 months.
but I explained that at the time we were not finacially in a good position to re start construction until end of April
The argument might not fly; but, it may stall the matter long enough for you to complete the project.
3 months and i would be done
The city has rules it must follow.
Get an attorney and seek an injunction.
Should I go local or should I use my father's attorney?
Again, the action might stall things long enough for you to complete the project.
Is it a small town?
how far is the nearest major metro area?
what is the city?
Tallahassee Florida is closest to Marianna FLorida is the town
I know some local lawyers but they are civil and criminal
I would first try to start with a local attorney. The local attorney might get the town's attention if he is well connected. the problem is that you lost credibility with the town. If the local attorney is well connected and can provide proof that you are sincere in your ability to complete by august, it might work. A civil attorney should be able to assist. If you cannot find a local attorney or if the local attorney is unsuccessul, go with big guns from Tallahassee
you are so close, I cannot imagine the city expending money to demolish the home. Generally these actions take a long time and involve substantial expenses.
well it is also under lien from the bank, so they would have to go against my bank
And I have never missed a payment or even late
Nope. The lien to the bank will not impact their ability to demolish the home.
you may also want to get the bank involved. Bankers are generally well connected. A phone call from a bank principal could yield the results you need.
Unfortunately, building and zoning matters tend to be very political.
People are stupid
I say 7 months, they give me 6 months.
There is much wisdom in your statement :-)
You can't finance a remodel that isn't going to worth what it will cost to perform
Their housing market is one of the worst in the state
Ok thanks for you time
Good luck. Do you have any further questions.
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16 years of legal experience in various aspects of the law. Licensed in multiple states.
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