Had shed built but contractor didn't get permit -- now needs to be moved.

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We contracted with with the local company to have a small 8' x 8' metal shed built in our back yard, but they didn't tell us we needed a permit which we got pinged for. We've only lived in the house for a year, and growing up in the country it never crossed my mind that a permit might be needed.
Now after talking to the contractor we've found the shed needs to be moved 6 feet due to an easement along the back of our property -- we built it 4 feet from back fence but easement is 10 feet. The City said the contractor should've told us about the permit given they build in the city all the time, and after talking to someone with the contractor even though she didn't claim fault she did act pissed that the person I bought the shed from didn't mention a permit.
The problem though is on the back of the paperwork I signed buried in the small print and wrapped around the legalize it does say I'm liable for all permits, but given I asked the person if there's anything we needed to do or prepare for the building, which his answer was No, what liability do we have? I'm still waiting to hear from the builder, but this is quite frustrating since we had a set budget and the building was just a hair over that... so spending extra cash to have it moved would suck.
So with this does anyone have any pointers I can use or say to the contractor if they either refuse to move it or want to charge some outrageous price to do so? The shed isn't on a slab, rather it's on blocks so I'd think they'd have some way to pull it up 6 feet.
Thanks for any suggestions. Also I'd rather not say the name of the contractor, which is a national company, until I hear back from them. But I'll post updates as I get more info.
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Alex wrote:

built in our back yard, but they didn't tell us we needed a permit which we got pinged for. We've only lived in the house for a year, and growing up in the country it never crossed my mind that a permit might be needed.

feet due to an easement along the back of our property -- we built it 4 feet from back fence but easement is 10 feet. The City said the contractor should've told us about the permit given they build in the city all the time, and after talking to someone with the contractor even though she didn't claim fault she did act pissed that the person I bought the shed from didn't mention a permit.

small print and wrapped around the legalize it does say I'm liable for all permits, but given I asked the person if there's anything we needed to do or prepare for the building, which his answer was No, what liability do we have? I'm still waiting to hear from the builder, but this is quite frustrating since we had a set budget and the building was just a hair over that... so spending extra cash to have it moved would suck.

if they either refuse to move it or want to charge some outrageous price to do so? The shed isn't on a slab, rather it's on blocks so I'd think they'd have some way to pull it up 6 feet.

contractor, which is a national company, until I hear back from them. But I'll post updates as I get more info.

Is there a floor or is it just a shell, is the floor part of the metal structure or was it built before or after the shed was assembled?
Is the floor built in such a way as to keep the structure square if lifted?
If you are able to get some beams under it you should be able to make a temporary sled that will make it easier to move (slide or roll).
It sounds like part of the shed is over where the new blocks will have to be so you would have to move it a foot or two past its new home to set up the last two blocks and move it back before dropping it in place.
Some pictures posted to a web page might help.
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On Fri, 01 Jul 2011 07:43:15 -0700, Ned Flanders

built in our back yard, but they didn't tell us we needed a permit which we got pinged for. We've only lived in the house for a year, and growing up in the country it never crossed my mind that a permit might be needed.

feet due to an easement along the back of our property -- we built it 4 feet from back fence but easement is 10 feet. The City said the contractor should've told us about the permit given they build in the city all the time, and after talking to someone with the contractor even though she didn't claim fault she did act pissed that the person I bought the shed from didn't mention a permit.

small print and wrapped around the legalize it does say I'm liable for all permits, but given I asked the person if there's anything we needed to do or prepare for the building, which his answer was No, what liability do we have? I'm still waiting to hear from the builder, but this is quite frustrating since we had a set budget and the building was just a hair over that... so spending extra cash to have it moved would suck.

if they either refuse to move it or want to charge some outrageous price to do so? The shed isn't on a slab, rather it's on blocks so I'd think they'd have some way to pull it up 6 feet.

contractor, which is a national company, until I hear back from them. But I'll post updates as I get more info.

The "typical" metal 8X8 shed doesn't need a sled. Detach it from the blocks and one or 2 men can lift it from inside and move it easily if it has no floor. Set new blocks in the new location and schlep it across. If it has a floor, lift the shed, set it aside, and 4 guys can EASILY move the floor.
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On 7/1/2011 10:43 AM, Ned Flanders wrote:

Lordy. If his 'national contractor' (Lowes or another big-box, I am assuming) won't help, get 3-4 long boards and half-a-dozen teenagers, and carry the damn thing out of the way, move the blocks, and set it down at the new location. Only hard part will be placing the new blocks and leveling then. Or go to HF, buy a cheap screw gun, take it apart enough to move by himself, and put it back together. We are talking 'erector set' here, not hi-tech engineering.
--
aem sends...

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wrote:

A small shed like that will easily roll on a few round posts. Buy a few fence posts from any farm supply store, put posts under the floor, use a floor jack to lift it enough to remove the blocks. Push it on the posts, add a 3rd post so it dont go off the first post. Jack it back up when you get it in place and put the blocks back. Use shims to level it if needed.
Now too hard for a small shed. Just empty it first to take weight off.
I've moved several large buildings including an entire barn, so what the OP has, is like moving a cardboard box.
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Alex wrote the following:

built in our back yard, but they didn't tell us we needed a permit which we got pinged for. We've only lived in the house for a year, and growing up in the country it never crossed my mind that a permit might be needed.

feet due to an easement along the back of our property -- we built it 4 feet from back fence but easement is 10 feet. The City said the contractor should've told us about the permit given they build in the city all the time, and after talking to someone with the contractor even though she didn't claim fault she did act pissed that the person I bought the shed from didn't mention a permit.

small print and wrapped around the legalize it does say I'm liable for all permits, but given I asked the person if there's anything we needed to do or prepare for the building, which his answer was No, what liability do we have? I'm still waiting to hear from the builder, but this is quite frustrating since we had a set budget and the building was just a hair over that... so spending extra cash to have it moved would suck.

if they either refuse to move it or want to charge some outrageous price to do so? The shed isn't on a slab, rather it's on blocks so I'd think they'd have some way to pull it up 6 feet.

contractor, which is a national company, until I hear back from them. But I'll post updates as I get more info.

It should be fairly easy to move an 8' x 8' metal shed with no permanent foundation 6'. Probably with 2 - 10' or 12' 2"x6"s and 4 people.
--

Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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Alex wrote:

Have the shed moved. Keep track of your expenses. Then, if the original contractor balks, ask for relief in small claims court.
The court will be sympathetic to you inasmuch as the contractor is an expert and you are a novice; the contractor should have taken you by the hand and told you explicitly what your further obligations were. Further, the contractor is doubly at fault since he should not have begun construction without a permit.
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wrote:

Don't know about where you live, but no permit is required for "temporary" buildings under 100 sq ft in MOST cities..
No foundation means temporary.
And it is up to YOU, the property owner, to know about easments on a newly purchased property - the contractor put the building 4 feet from the property line, which is likely standard operating procedure - and within by-law requirements in the area. The contractor would not know there is an easment - but the realtor that sold you the property HAD to tell you - disclosure is a REQUIREMENT.
Suck it up and move the shed.
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On Fri, 01 Jul 2011 14:04:29 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

From where I come from, no permit is needed for a 120 square foot "accessory building" (sans utilities), no matter how 'permanent' the foundation (under 12 feet in height).
The 'setback', unfortunately, is 100 feet from the road and 6 feet from the property line.
Easements would be the responsibility of the title company. So, the OP bought the house with a mortgage, there's almost certainly a title company involved.
If there is any expense due to unknown easements, then the title company should be responsible for those costs. Of course, the cost of moving such a tiny shed should be minimal - but - I must ask the OP.
OP: What did the title company say about this situation?
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I'd fully go along with the above if it were not for the fact that the OP says that the back of the contract says that the homeowner is "liabel for all permits". I'd like to see the exact wording of what it says. Could take the above two ways. One being the homeowner is responsible for getting any permits. Second being the homeowner is responsible for PAYING for them.
All things considered, I'd first lean on the company hard to move it. If that doesn't work, I'd just move it myself. A small shed like that is easy enough to do.
If taken to small claims, the homeowner might win if he could show that the shed company regularly sells sheds in that town, knows the laws and being the expert should have told them upfront that a permit was required. Of course, the company could show up and lie, saying they did tell them.
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I suspect that if anyone cares to do the math that the shed can be moved for about the same price as filing in small claims. One is a guaranteed winner and the other is a crap shoot.
How damned hard can it be to move an 8x8 metal shed?
Colbyt
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Further,
getting
them.
easy
the
No, it's a simple contract case. If the homeowner signed a contract that says he's responsible for pulling a permit, that's that. I've seen this dozens of times. Chet (you finally have a first name!), you've done enough work to know that people regularly "forget" to pull permits.
Yes, the expert KNOWS a permit should be pulled, but the contract controls. Always. Unless it has unconscionable terms or there's no "meeting of the minds." I've been shocked by what judges enforce that people have signed. Look at any concrete contract that requires delivery beyond the curbside. They routinely squash sprinklers, mash septic tanks and catch wiring because the trucks are so big and visibility is not good what with the water tank above the cab and the huge, tall drum.
But every smart concrete delivery company will NOT cross the curb without a signature releasing them from any and all liability. That means you absolve them from anything they destroy short of malicious destruction, a standard that's hard for any homeowner to meet. Now you could get an idiot small claims judge that might override the contract because a shocking number of them in the US aren't even lawyers, but if you agree that you, not the contractor, pulls the permit, not pulling it is on the homeowner and a ruling otherwise would not survive an appeal. There might be some wiggle room if NO shed under ANY circumstances could be placed where they placed it, but that's a long shot argument.
I'd be very surprised to read a case that was ruled otherwise. Hard to know since most small claims judgements aren't "on record." But there are plenty of district and circuit court rulings that go to the contract every time. People look sick when they have to rebuilt a septic system or a smashed overhang, but this is established case law. The contract controls and nothing oral or "wishful" can be incorporated into it. Only a signed writing that both parties agree to. You had better believe that most pros vigorously litigate in situations like this so they can avoid setting a precedent and having Joe Homeowner say "but you moved it for Jack Houseowner!"
There are thousands of suits on record (usually meaning the damages claim exceed $5,000) where super-heavy concrete trucks have done very serious damage to property. The owners, besides have the "beyond the curb" waiver signed before they cross the curb (which if often the first thing to go!) have another argument they can (and do) make in court: "Your honor, the plaintiff COULD have chosen to pay more and we would have sent a concrete pump truck and avoided the problem entirely. The homeowner CHOSE the cheaper method and the risk involved."
As the guy everyone here knows would sue at the drop of hat, this is one case where I might try to get them to move the shed for "goodwill" reasons but court would be a waste of time. This is a losing case. Reminds me of the Monty Python organ donor skit where two guys break into a man's house, throw him down and begin cutting out his kidney. As he screams "what are you doing?!" they explain "See this card - it says you're an organ donor. We're taking your donation."
You have to know what you're signing, no matter how deeply hidden some seriously "bad for you" clauses might be.
Ironically I have a shed too close to the fence line and a growing tree dispute with the County that owns the lot behind me. I am expect my "move it" letter any day. Little do they know I planned to demolish it anyway. Don't throw me in that briar patch, County Fox.
-- Bobby G.
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Robert Green wrote:

It's not a clear as it seems. Regarding contracts, we do not have courts of law in this country - we have courts of equity. You and I could say the same thing five different ways in a contract and swear to it before a holy father and a notary public but if the contract is unfair on its face, no court will enforce it.
Secondly, regarding the "fine print." While this is a seemingly impenetrable defense, courts uniformly hold that the person presenting the contract containing the "fine print" is to be regarded skeptically at litigation time. In almost all cases, the presumption is on the side of the customer. A contract is a meeting of the minds and a written contract is but a memorialization of that understanding. The court simply asks the plaintiff "Did you understand the 'fine print'?" If the answer is demonstrably "no," the contract is voidable. In other words, a WRITTEN contract is trumped by the (obviously provable) agreement of the parties.
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of
same
father
will
There's nothing unfair with the clause "Owner is responsible for securing proper permits."

impenetrable
Say WHAT?????

Dude, that's totally insanity. If it were remotely true, every signer of every obtuse mortgage in this big foreclosure mess would be litigating their way out of those contracts using the novel principles your espousing. Unless there was fraud (the robosigners, for instance) people are being held to the fine print and so it will ever be. Why do you think there IS fine print? Maybe what you say is true in the legally unusual state of Texas, but the mass of foreclosures that come down to the fine print tell quite a different story than what you propose to be true.
The gentleman in this case signed a contract that HE ADMITS mentions which party is responsible for permitting. You've taken some legitmate concepts like "ambiguity is construed against the writer of the contract" and created something that can only be called "HeyBub's Law." That and Matlock won't get you very far in the US courts I am familiar with.
If I didn't have 100 more pressing messages to consider, I'd hack this one up further but it's so easily disproved by example (the 1000's of foreclosures occurring nationwide) that it's too silly to waste time on. The SCOTUS just ruled that you can sign your rights to a class action suit away by contract. That's another hint that the contract, not a "sense of fair play" or "who is the expert" prevails almost every time.
I am sure that other people familiar with US contract law will, as the Brits say, slit you up a treat. If I still and Lexis/Nexis access, I would drown you in cases just like this where "you signed it, it was in plain English, case over." Let me ask you this: When you sign a stock cell phone, auto loan or credit card agreement, do you have a true "meeting of the minds" in the sense that there's give and take on both sides? No, of course not. You take it or you leave it, but if you take it, you're bound by it.
-- Bobby G.
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The problem as I pointed out is none of us know what the contract actually says. The OP only said something to the effect that the back of the contract says he's liable for permits which is his interpetation of what it says. I've had contractors give me quotes that say I'm responsible for the cost of permits. Unless we have the exact verbage, you're just speculating.
As to my name, it's been there in every post if you looked.
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wrote:

Of course anyone with a high school education knows that this is total BS. And there goes your credibility. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
--

Chet, trust me, it's SUCH a prickly issue with me, I surely would have
noticed. Maybe you THOUGHT is was always there, but in the time I have been
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It sure must be SUCH an issue with you as evidenced by your need to so definitively document it above. As you discovered, Google used to include it and I just assumed they continued to do so, but they do not.
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<stuff snipped>

been
It sure must be SUCH an issue with you as evidenced by your need to so definitively document it above. As you discovered, Google used to include it and I just assumed they continued to do so, but they do not. --------------------------------------------------------------------- It's an issue because I'm experiencing short term memory loss and it's important to me to know what memory loss is real and what's not. It would be scary to think that it was there for hundreds of posts and I either missed or forgot it. Also, as a former reporter, it's important to me to put a name to a statement just because that's how I was trained.
Your name suddenly appearing on your posts was notably different from previous posts and I wanted to know why. It could have been someone trying to spoof you. Now I know. Your explanation makes perfect sense. It's no big thing, but I do feel it's important to get things right. Credibility and all that.
I didn't think you'd believe me without any proof, which is why I spent all of 40 seconds to search Google and do a quick cut and paste. This interchange also reminded me that newsreaders are not the end-all, be-all way to interact with Usenet. Most newsreader/servers would be hard-pressed to find messages from 7 months ago, let alone 7 years. Google, as you suggested earlier, provides functionality lacking from most newsreaders. We're actually in agreement about the big ruckus over posting from Google to be a tempest in a teapot. As is this name business. (-:
-- Bobby G.
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wrote:

would
Thanks. It's no big thing. I just like to keep track of how fast my memory is degrading. )-: A new and disturbing symptom is appearing where the words in my mind are NOT what comes out of my fingers. I'll mean to type "precipitate" and write "participate" and far worse. The brain doc (can't remember the word!!!) ah, neurologist gives me all these fancy tests and then says "Don't worry about it" when the scores come out lower and lower. How can you not worry about it? Reminds me of that movie "Charly" and not in a good way. Thanks for confirming this wasn't on me but was the dastardly Google's fault.
-- Bobby G.
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wrote:

Personally, I doubt a "permit" is required -but regardless, the problem is a problem of location - with an easement on the property - which the contractor would not have any warning about unless the OWNER told him - and the OWNER had to know.
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