Row House Rehab Into Two Units - Posted by Tony Newbie

Posted by Ron (MD) on July 04, 2006 at 20:48:21:

Tony,

You can call the Balt. City zoning office at (410) 396-4301. They’ll tell you over the phone how the property is zoned.

If it’s not zoned for two units, you’ll need to go through an administrative hearing to request a variance. It takes several weeks and I don’t know how likely they are to approve the change.

Personally, I wouldn’t buy a multi-unit that wasn’t zoned as such, unless my intention was to convert it back to a single-family.

Ron Guy

Row House Rehab Into Two Units - Posted by Tony Newbie

Posted by Tony Newbie on July 04, 2006 at 10:01:58:

My wife and I are closing on a row house that has been rehab to a two unit apartment. I was told by my REA, in order to have seprate mailing addresses for the tenants, (APT-1 APT-2), I would need to have the place rezoned which can be costly. Who would want there confidential mail in the same box with their neighbors? How does this work?
Thanks,
Baltimore

Re: Row House Rehab Into Two Units - Posted by BTI

Posted by BTI on July 04, 2006 at 17:13:12:

Tony

Plus what about insurance, and what happens if the place burns down, plus what about the neighbors and extra traffic/parking. I know as a neighbor I would complain to the city and have it restored to single family status. So buy it at your own risk, which the agent doesn’t seem to be advising you about.

BTI

Re: Row House Rehab Into Two Units - Posted by John

Posted by John on July 04, 2006 at 10:14:20:

I would be very careful. If this was done without permits or approvals and you buy this place you could be in for more then you bargained for.
If the area is zone as Single Family and someone created a duplex without approvals by the city, the city may order you to convert it back to a SFH. Rowhomes are still single family attached dwellings.
I would check with the city without giving up your seller. Just ask questions without revealing the address so as not to upset the apple cart for the current owner.
Remember, a good portion of REA are not very knowledgable when it comes to zoning laws, building codes and many other areas of real estate.
I would do your homework and don’t rely on what the agent is telling you.

And you are right, to get a hardship variance (which i don’t think you would qualify for) you will need to open your wallet up and pay for a whole host of professionals to assist you in getting what you need.

Good luck and as always…let the Buyer Beware.

Re: Row House Rehab Into Two Units - Posted by Tony Newbie

Posted by Tony Newbie on July 04, 2006 at 17:54:48:

The street that the rowhouse is on, other homes are abandon except a few. Your’e right too on the fire issue. Would the fire dept need an alarm connected to their system if one cathes fire and the one tenant dont hear their smoke dectector. Another Issue.

Need more advice! Thx