Unpulled Permits and new owners responsibility

1 Reply

Hello BP, I have flipped a few homes and wholesaled a few properties, but the question I have is regarding my primary residence that we just bought in April 2021.

We bought the home from a flipper that has done dozens and dozens of flips in the area (Seacoast NH).

I received a letter from the town the other day that would like to inspect all work that was done by the flipper after the fact. There were interior repairs and updates that were done, and some repairs of siding and deck. 

The only thing they pulled a permit for was the new roof and the new septic system. I’m assuming that’s because the subcontractors that did it would only do it with a permit. The rest of the work was likely done in-house or with friendly contractors that would do the work without a permit.

why would I grant them access to my home when they only person they will hold responsible for anything that was not done correctly is me? As I said, this LLC has done many many jobs in the area. I live on the busiest road in town, a state road, and there's no way in hell the town did not know there was work going on here and just decided to wait until I own the property to hold me accountable for anything that's not right.

Has anyone encountered this situation? I’m sure it’s common. Thanks in advance for any advice or knowledge you can offer.

You have a lot of work obviously done without a permit. You know it and they know it. But the only person it will hurt is you - when you decide to sell the house and the buyer checks with the city. As far as I kno, you don;t have to let the City inspect work that was done by a previous owner, although your jurisdiction's rules may vary.

They can't slap a 'Stop Notice' on the work because it's already done. I suppose they could withdraw the Certificate Of Occupancy, or if one was never issued, they could declare the property 'unlivable' and force you to get it permitted and brought up to code.

What a mess! One reason why it's a good idea to check permit status before purchasing a property.........