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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Park City, Utah
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    Default Have you ever heard of this!!!!

    My friend bought a condo in a large condo complex (as a rental or flip) in Park City Utah about six months age. The other day the city sent him a letter stating the stairs to the loft are not up to code (to steep). The place was built in 1972 and the city is trying to force him to bring the stairs up to code. I informed him to ask the city why he is responsible for this and how it passed code in 1972. Thier response was it was never inspected. This is a large complex so how could this be?
    So does anyone know if this was legal (for the city to force update of the stairs) and what is the best way to find out what codes were in place in 1972.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Santa Rosa, CA
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    2,286

    Default Re: Have you ever heard of this!!!!

    Matthew,

    Seems like the only thing your friend can do is head over to the building department and get the whole story. If push comes to shove, it might be cheaper to replace the stairway (assuming there is room) than to hire an attorney.

    Department of Redundancy Department
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Park City, Utah
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    Default Re: Have you ever heard of this!!!!

    Only a spiral staircase could fit and adhere to code. The funny thing is the city has yet to enter the condo, so how can they be sure the staircase does not meet code.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Caledon, Ontario
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    4,799

    Default Re: Have you ever heard of this!!!!

    If the occupancy permit was never signed off, then the current owner is responsible for complying with the building code at the time. If the current owners lawyer had been diligent in his title search, this should have been picked up on by the lawyer and brought to the attention of the purchaser.

    You should also refer to your municipalities code requirements and legal rights to issue a requirement to comply with the building code. There could be a limitation within the legislation as to retroactive compliance.

    The value of experience is not in seeing much, but in seeing wisely.

  5. #5
    Aaron Miller's Avatar
    Aaron Miller Guest

    Default Re: Have you ever heard of this!!!!

    Matthew:

    R102.7 Existing structures.
    The legal occupancy of any structure existing on the date of adoption of this code shall be permitted to continue without change, except as is specifically covered in this code, the International Property Maintenance Code or the International Fire Code, or as is deemed necessary by the building official for the general safety and welfare of the occupants and the public.

    If the AHJ's an ass it can certainly happen. If I were your friend I would hire an attorney to write a nasty letter demanding to have this matter taken before the municipal construction appeals board. If they rule against him he still has the right of legal review and can further appeal their decision to the district court.

    Aaron


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    25,317

    Default Re: Have you ever heard of this!!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron Miller View Post
    R102.7 Existing structures.
    The legal occupancy of any structure existing on the date of adoption of this code shall be permitted to continue without change, except as is specifically covered in this code, the International Property Maintenance Code or the International Fire Code, or as is deemed necessary by the building official for the general safety and welfare of the occupants and the public.

    Aaron,

    Wrong code reference, but it says the same thing as the correct code reference (below).

    From the 2006 IBC.
    - 102.6 Existing structures.
    The legal occupancy of any structure existing on the date of adoption of this code shall be permitted to continue without change, except as is specifically covered in this code, the International Property Maintenance Code or the International Fire Code, or as is deemed necessary by the building official for the general safety and welfare of the occupants and the public.

    The IRC does not apply to condos, the IBC does, along with each of the individual codes (IPC, IMC, etc.).

    I would first suggest that your friend checks with the management association and finds out how many other condo units have a similar loft setup. If his is the only one, then it may have been done without permits, which gets back to something some of us have said many times (and was brought up again just recently - - - check for building permits, that would have exposed any outstanding permitted work, and the difference between the building department's floor plan and the condo's floor plan would have exposed unpermitted changes ... such as the loft.

    At this point, if his is 'the only condo' that way, he might as well bite the bullet, use this as a learning experience, and do what is necessary to correct the situation.

    If, on the other hand, there are many condo units with that same condition, then your friend should argue THAT ALL SIMILAR UNITS much be brought up to that standard for him to have to bring his condo unit up to that standard.

    The AHJ might do that, or, more likely, as a result of many persons barraging them with complaints, including going to the commission, the AHJ might give waivers for those conditions, which now makes them legal forever more.



    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  7. #7
    Aaron Miller's Avatar
    Aaron Miller Guest

    Default Re: Have you ever heard of this!!!!

    Wrong code reference, but it says the same thing as the correct code reference (below).
    Jerry:

    Those of us who cannot afford to drive a fleet of Jaguars can also not afford the IBC, DEF, GHI, etc. IRC's all I have so I used it. Thanks for the catch.

    Excusez-moi!

    Aaron


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Park City, Utah
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    1,530

    Default Re: Have you ever heard of this!!!!

    Hey guys thanks for the infor, it is invaluable. There are about 5 or 10 upper units and they all have the same loft set up.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    Default Re: Have you ever heard of this!!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by mathew stouffer View Post
    Hey guys thanks for the infor, it is invaluable. There are about 5 or 10 upper units and they all have the same loft set up.
    Then the AHJ needs to cite them all for correction, or give them all a waiver.

    Either or, no hanky panky citing one and not the others.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

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