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Thomas
Thomas, General Contractor
Category: Home Improvement
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Experience:  Owner/ Vice President
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I'm attaching a picture or 2 of the interior of a building I

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I'm attaching a picture or 2 of the interior of a building I rented that appears is not to code. Landlord refuses to finish work and says it is up to code. Need 3rd party advice.

Hello and thank you for choosing JA! A couple things from the picture...it is definitely unfinished space you have rented! Secondly, relative to codes...the specific codes to vary by locality...one code for one municipality may be different than another. My suggestion is to have the building official from your specific municipality inspect the space! As a tenant, you are well within your rights to request the building inspector from your city or town come out and inspect the space for compliance. If it deemed compliant, then it is up to you how to handle your lease. If you are leasing this space, and it was specified to be unfinished, but up to code prior to move in...you should have the building inspector come out and sign off on it. If you leased the space already, then you should still have the building inspector come out and tell you of the space is compliant. As a Landlord, we all have to obtain OCCUPANCY PERMITS prior to leasing a space. You are well within your rights to request the certificate of occupancy from your Landlord to confirm that space is compliant and in suitable condition for leasing. In my opinion, from the pictures, it is unfinished space, but that doesn't necessarily mean it can't be leased...unless your Landlord has not gotten the blessing from the City for an occupancy permit. I hope this has been helpful! Thank you again for using JA!

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The building in the pictures is actually a garage/ shop I rented with another(main) building. If I didn't rent it with the main building he was going to rent out to someone else as a mechanic shop. So it wasn't like this building just so happened to come with the property. The landlord was actively advertising each building separately. The issue with having an inspector come and look at the property is I no longer lease the property as I terminated the lease due to the landlord not completing the work and ultimately not being able to fully get my business off the ground.
If you look closely at the 1st picture you can see the blocks that were stacked on the outside of the original sheet metal. A few years ago the landlord performed a remodel on the buildings where he stacked concrete blocks over the existing structure with the only 1 out of 3 support beams actually supporting anything. As well as nothing anchoring the blocks to the original frame of the structure. After looking at the pictures my questions are;1. Does it appear that the block work was done correctly?
2. What are the requirements for toilet installation? in regards ***** ***** ventilation, running water, privacy( do toilet have to be isolated in a separate walled room), are sinks required to be installed wherever toilets are installed?
Please help as best as you can as your help is appreciated.Thank you

Hi again and thanks for reaching back out. To be quite honest, I cannot really see the block issue well enough to know if it was done to correctly or not. Typically, block or masonry is not anchored to the structure since it is in its own right, structural. In other words, a block wall is built on a footer. Then, if the inside is "finished", metal studs or wood studs are built inside independent to the block, i.e. the bottom track or floor plate is shot or tapconned to the concrete slab. What I do see in the second picture are metal studs installed in front of a window which is questionable. The insulation work is haphazard at best obviously. Regarding the bathroom, it should be of minimum size to be able to accommodate a wheel chair since it is being leased as a commercial space and, yes, it must have an exhaust fan vented to the outside per code. Certainly running water is required. Regardless of municipality code, OSHA, a federal agency, has requirements for bathroom facilities in the work place. Here is a sample of the requirements specific to your question...

Restroom Structure Requirements

Separate facilities must be available for each sex, unless the toilet rooms themselves can be occupied by no more than one person and can be locked from the inside.

Each water closet must be a separate compartment. Each must have with a door and must be separated from the next by partitions.

Sinks for Handwashing

Hand-washing facilities must be provided. They must offer hot and cold water, or tepid water. Soap and hand towels must also be available.

I hope this additional information has helped in answering some of your concerns. Clearly there are deficiencies in the work that was done, not to mention it is clearly incomplete. Thanks again for using JA!

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