should I buy a house with an illegal residence on the property

By billyjoebob   follow   Sun, 6 Jan 2013, 2:34am PST   ↑ Like   ↓ Dislike   643 views   9 comments   Watch (0)   Share   Quote  

There's a house in my neighborhood with this profile:

Two properties:

The main house: 2 bedrooms and bath upstairs, living and dining room and kitchen and bath downstairs. Basement used to be some sort of small metalworking shop, zoned for commercial (or used to be), on big road/intersection. Corner lot. Appears to have no big structural problems, but what do I know.

The "shed": illegally zoned bachelor pad in the back, bath/kitchen/bedroom, hooked up to utilities and in good shape.

The house is about 100 years old and the owner died, now it's an estate sale. The inside is really horrendous - I'm not saying it has the stench of death, but it's bad. The downstairs bathroom has no door and was expanded to fit a morbidly obese resident. Like I said, it makes your skin crawl. But the owner used to run the shop and probably maintained the house in good shape - that's what I'm hoping (he built the shed in the back).

So here's my question. With some small changes to the main house (add a door to the bathroom, remove all the crap of deceased, open the windows and let some light in) I think I could get $1200/month in rent, easy (it's a nice neighborhood in NOVA). That would cover the mortgage payments, roughly. Then I would live in the shed in the back for free, or taxes+expenses.

So does this sound like a plan? Or will I run into big problems/repairs/zoning problems? I can post the link, but I don't want to give too much away.

#housing

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billyjoebob   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Sun, 6 Jan 2013, 2:39am PST   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 1

I should mention that the chances of getting the shed legally zoned are pretty small. If there were good odds, the property would have been gobbled up by now.

JFP   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Sun, 6 Jan 2013, 2:41am PST   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 2

Unless you can afford it without living in the shed, I wouldn't touch it. If you rented it, and then someone (like the tenant) reported you living in the illegal shed, and you got kicked out, you would be in trouble.

Raw   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Sun, 6 Jan 2013, 2:50am PST   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 3

Rule of thumb I use.....Always buy in a quality area. Quality areas in the long run will outperform the rest, and give you less headaches.

billyjoebob   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Sun, 6 Jan 2013, 3:10am PST   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 4

http://www.redfin.com/VA/Arlington/1747-S-Glebe-Rd-22204/home/11271146#public-records

billyjoebob   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Sun, 6 Jan 2013, 3:11am PST   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 5

Appears to be under contract.

elliemae   befriend (25)   ignore (4)   Sun, 6 Jan 2013, 3:57am PST   Like   Dislike (1)     Share   Quote   Comment 6

I believe that you would either be required to bring the shed to code or destroy it. Depends upon the zoning requirements.

That's my experience - from Vegas, tho.

New Renter   befriend (4)   ignore (11)   Sun, 6 Jan 2013, 8:36am PST   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 7

billyjoebob says

http://www.redfin.com/VA/Arlington/1747-S-Glebe-Rd-22204/home/11271146#public-records

billyjoebob says

I should mention that the chances of getting the shed legally zoned are pretty small. If there were good odds, the property would have been gobbled up by now.

Does this help solve the mystery?

Sold AS IS. Three level 1904 house is in worse condition inside than it looks from outside. Located on a corner lot near busy Glebe & Walter Reed Roads. Clutter & old furniture stored inside. Dated kitchen & bathrooms. Upper level rooms have water damaged ceilings. Window a/c units. Narrow stairs access to walk out basement. Basement needs work. Large newer shed is an annexe that is a one bedroom house. Large tree in middle of fenced backyard. Shows poorly.

Haroon Malik, Redfin Associate Agent

Tenpoundbass   befriend (1)   ignore (21)   Mon, 7 Jan 2013, 5:00am PST   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 8

New Renter says

Located on a corner lot near busy Glebe & Walter Reed Roads. Clutter & old furniture stored inside. Dated kitchen & bathrooms.

Sounds like a honey hole.

HEY YOU   befriend (3)   ignore (4)   Mon, 7 Jan 2013, 6:48am PST   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 9

How many time have we all done things & then ask ourselves: What the hell was I thinking?

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