Am I responsibile for unpermitted decks built by previous owners?
April 3, 2006 11:00 AM Subscribe
I bought my house in the Los Angeles hills about two years ago. A week ago, I was approached, out of nowhere, by a City Inspector regarding two decks off the back of my house. The decks were built by the previous owners and were very likely unpermitted - which is not uncommon in the hills where I live. The larger of the two decks did have a permit applied for by the previous owner, but they seemingly didn't follow through on the permit and built the deck anyhow. The deck was very professionally done - complete with casons and concrete poured - but may not be up to code. My question is: as the current owner, am I responsible for a deck built by the previous owner that may be unpermitted? Can this inspector, who didn't come on my property but merely espied it from the street below, demand that we allow them to inspect the decks - built a few years ago? I have heard conflicting opinions from people - some who've said it's my responsibility now, some who've said I should tell the inspector I don't know anything about the permits but the decks "came with the house".