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Illegally rented Commercial space

Discussion in 'Commercial Landlord & Tenant Issues' started by nelmore187, Dec 9, 2009.

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  1. nelmore187

    nelmore187 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I rented a space believing it was commercial for a resturant . Everything was well until I tried to get gas put on, there were no meter. Not a problem con edison said we had to get an architect and plumber draw the plans submit to the building dept, so we did that. This is where the whole zoning issue was raised (because we need commercial gas line),and we subsiqiently find out the whole building (including my space) is zoned residential. Now the termanology on the lease states that I can only use the space as a coffee shop/ resturant. Which I cannot because it was converted to an illegal commercial space. Now I stopped paying rent and asked the landlord to make me whole again. He advised me to just walk away,(which is out of the question). Two months go by now he has a non payment action, which I missed the date. And recieved a judgement against me I went the next day filed an oder to show cause, got a date explained everything that I'm writing here to the judge and also put it on record when I filed the order,along with official paper work supporting the zoning findings from the architect. Can I be recup any moneies spent in this illegal rental, and what other course of action can I take against the landlord. He has three other stores that I was thinking of calling the building dept. because those all are illegal.
     
  2. nelmore187

    nelmore187 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    If there are any statues that you can send me on this case it would really help.
     
  3. mightymoose

    mightymoose Moderator

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    The language of the lease will be very important here.
    If you can show you were misled about the nature of the rental space then you can make a good argument. Was the rental advertised as commercial space?

    You screwed up by not going to court.... you are very lucky you filed the appeal in time.

    It is hard to say what might happen here without knowing more about how the rental was advertised, whether there wre deliberate misrepresentations, and knowing exactly how the lease is worded.

    You, as the renter/business owner, have at least a shared responsibility for knowing the zoning of the property. It sounds like you have a decent argument to make though.
     
  4. ustankman50

    ustankman50 New Member

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    Landlord misled me after moving in.

    I am kind of in the same boat as you. I have been renting a commercial wherehouse in Los Alamitos California for nine years. Recently I found out that the landlord has been renting me this space Illegally. The building looks like a old air craft hanger. When I first moved in it was totally open. Then the owner divided the up into seperate units. After nine years of paying rent on time the landlord is giving me a hard time. Out of three other tenants I am the only one that he wants out. After three years I asked him if he had pulled city permits to divide the building. He told me and another tenant that he had pulled a general permit. Just recently though he is being investigated by the city for subdividing without a permit. I would like to move. Can I sue the landlord for renting me a space that has been illegal for years. I just went to reapply for my buisiness license and I was denied for the his violations. Can someone please tell me the next step for legal action.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2010
  5. coexistin

    coexistin New Member

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    I recently rented from a man who owns a restaurant and rented me the warehouse outback to open a antique store. He didnt want a written contract . i did. i went to the law depot site downloaded a form he signed it anyway. There were osha safe issues he had to fix n had to make available elect. He never did. I delivered letter stating i wouldnt b renting from him. i wouldnt be able to get proper permits for use if he didnt fix things. He then blocked the door witth a vehicle so i couldnt get my things.
    Stressed at this point i left it all there. One year later he sues me for a year rent. The Dist court judge gave it to him and wouldnt look at my evidence as to the mans dishonest ways. Said i could appeal it. The place had broken windows a detached support beam inside, picture of the mans vehicle blocking door, witnesses as to such. Place was not approved for use or occupancy. Dont know if its properly subdivided, but is unfit for use. What can i do in the appeals process that would vacate that seemingly wrong judgement ?
     
  6. disagreeable

    disagreeable Well-Known Member

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    You used it for 1 year as storage. Why should you not be obligated to pay for its use?
     

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