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New homeowner just found house has NO BUILDING PERMITS!!!!!! only agricultural building.

Ramona, CA |

What could/should a homeowner do if they just found out that their home has no building permits. The only permits that come up are for a Agricultural building and the plumbing and electrical for an agricultural building. There is in fact no agricultural building on the property AND they also just found out that the septic tank is under the master bedroom. Who can be held responsible if this was never disclosed during the sale? What steps should they take? The house is in Ramona, CA

Not sure who they bought the house from (if it was the builder or not?). What the current owner is wondering is, if the house itself has no building permits, how were they even able to qualify for the loan? Obviously w/ the septic being under the house, that right there is a clear violation. Another question is, was the seller required to disclose any of this to the buyer? The current owner would have never bought the house if this was known! Im guessing whoever built this, owned the land got the agricultural building permit and then constructed the house (again no ag building was ever constructed). And Im assuming since the entire house is a building permit violation the only remedy would be to try and get the correct permits or demo, can the current buyer go after the seller? the sellers agent? who?

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Attorney answers 3


Is your house located in a subdivision? The permits could be for the subdivision. Who did you buy your house from? Did someone own a plot of land, and then constructed the house? I would determine who originally built the house and start there. It is unclear from your posting what exactly you want to do here. Do you want to move your septic tank? If so, you would need to comply with local, and state land use and environmental laws, and I would contact a contractor experienced in these matters. Good luck to you!


You can go after the seller if they knew about any of the violations. You probably need an attorney to do so.


You will want to review the chain of title for your property. Determine who built the Agricultural building and pulled the permits for it. Then you will want to determine if the owner who sold the home to you was aware of this. Finally, you will want to speak with your realtor to find out what they knew about this and what the sellers realtor new or should have known about this. In many areas, it is required by the lender to have the septic tank pumped and tested prior to purchase, you could look into that as well.

Note: These suggestions are being given without full knowledge of the facts of the situation, and are not intended to be relied upon or to create any attorney client relationship.

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