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View Full Version : City putting me out of business! Seriously!


lawnlandscape
03-27-2012, 09:48 PM
I am so speechless right now. I don't know what to do. Yesterday some guy was walking down the street going door to door looking for the 'landscaper', that's how hard it was for him to find me. It was the Manager of Planning and Zoning.

Finally, after he found me, he told me its illegal to run a business like yours from your residence. I do live in the city, but the lots are about 3/4 of an acre in my area. I moved into this home 3+ years ago and have been operating off this property ever since.

Everything having to do with my business is not located anywhere near the street, and everything other then 2 trucks and 2 trailers is inside my 1,500 sq. ft. garage. I don't have any material piles, or any other equipment outside. Its VERY neat and clean.

There are countless of other guys within the city that literally have mowers lined up and topsoil and mulch piles on there front.. yes front.. yards.

Today I got a letter in the mail that says, "You are in violation of city zoning ordinances and you have until APRIL 6th to CEASE OPERATIONS OF THIS ILLEGAL BUSINESS LOCATED AT 16** N. 7TH STREET.

If the business remains operating after April 6th citations may be issued and this matter may be forwarded to the City Attorney for further action.

The guy said he got some kind of complaint, but I have a very good relationship with ALL my immediate neighbors and know it was not them. They all think this is ridiculous.

What can I do!!??

Do they really expect me to close my business within the next 10 days?!?

I only have one employee but I do hundreds of thousands in sales each year and I have hundreds of customers.

Why does this have to happen at the busiest time of the year!!! :cry:

grandview (2006)
03-27-2012, 09:51 PM
Technically your not running a business from your home.All your business is done else where. Also how are your trucks registered if they are in your name it's private property.Just like the family Yugo.

lawnlandscape
03-27-2012, 09:54 PM
Technically your not running a business from your home.All your business is done else where. Also how are your trucks registered if they are in your name it's private property.Just like the family Yugo.

Trucks are in the business name and lettered.

Thats exactly what I told the guy!! All of our work is done off site!

grandview (2006)
03-27-2012, 09:55 PM
Is it a matter of just getting a permit to have the stuff there?

P.Services
03-27-2012, 09:56 PM
the city is going to win on this one. Find a nice little two bay shop with a office and yard to store supplies. I bet your business will grow because of it.

WHIPPLE5.7
03-27-2012, 09:57 PM
Talking to a lawyer will be money well spent. You're not running a business in the house, its from a truck and trailer. These needledicked azzholes are always trying to strongarm someone into giving up. You haev rights. Around here all you have to do is get written consent from your immediate neighbors and once they have signed off you are un touchable. Maybe you should build a tall fence. You also shaould ask where the source of the complaint was. Don't quit over this. If all else fails find the little jerk and put some fear into him.

lawnlandscape
03-27-2012, 09:58 PM
Aparently there is a such thing as a conditional use permit, but the guy said there is no way to get a conditional use permit for a landscape company on a residential property.

There is also some rule about number of company vehicles and that it can only be one that is used by the person living in the home.

The problem lies most (I guess) with my 16' enclosed trailer (lettered), 06 Ford F250 (Lettered), '94 Chevy 2500 (Lettered), and 14' flat trailer.

lawnlandscape
03-27-2012, 10:00 PM
You also should ask where the source of the complaint was.

He refused to tell me.

wbw
03-27-2012, 10:17 PM
Rent a storage unit.
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lawnlandscape
03-27-2012, 10:20 PM
If I have to rent something then half of my property is useless to me. My business pays me rent to use that space. I would lose out on that rent, and I would have to pay for some other place. It would be devastating to me and my business.
Posted via Mobile Device

grandview (2006)
03-27-2012, 10:21 PM
Go to the zoning board and get a special use permit if they have something like that,

Mountain Peak
03-27-2012, 10:52 PM
You need to consult with an attorney ASAP. There are different rules everywhere. I used to live in a neighborhood and as long as I parked behind my fence nobody could say a thing. I would think that since you are parked in your garage everyone should mind their own business.
Call an attorney, most consultations are free.

Shawn S
03-28-2012, 12:01 AM
It doesn't sound like you are, but just in case DON'T take his threats lightly. Also keep in mind that this guy is not out to ruin your life. The city councilors (who are elected by the residents of the city) at one time decided that home businesses needed to be regulated and they passed city ordinances to govern such businesses. This guy was hired to enforce these rules, and that is what he is doing. It sounds like you were lucky you got away with it as long as you did. Accept the fact that you were getting off good, and step up to the plate and deal with the mess you are in now. The city didn't put you in this mess, you are in this mess because you were unaware of the ordinances regulating businesses run from your home. You will not likely get out of this on some "technicality" such as you do your work elsewhere. I am not saying you were stupid to run your LCO from your home, just stating you weren't aware that it wasn't OK to do.

The first thing you should do is go to city hall and ask for whoever deals with licensing home businesses. Once you find that person tell them what your line of business is and ask them if you can do it from your home. Don't assume that the man that knocked on your door knows everything about licensing a home business, he may have been spot on, but he also may have been wrong when he told you it couldn't be done.

If you don't get an answer that works there, you may have to consult an attorney.

In the end you may have to rent somewhere to keep some of your stuff. If you do, it is probably not a deal breaker. You can still rent part of your property to keep "some" of your stuff. Get the majority offsite so you can show the city you are complying, and keep a little onsite so you still get some of the tax advantages of using parts of your home for your business.

THEGOLDPRO
03-28-2012, 12:06 AM
If your really making "hundreds of thousands of dollars a year" like you say then it should be no big deal to rent a small commercial space to store your equipment.

Quit crying about it and go rent a place, This is the risk you take when operating a business from a residential zoned area.

Glenn Lawn Care
03-28-2012, 12:06 AM
Can't you rent a storage unit in the mean time til you figure something else out so you don't have to close up shop?

THEGOLDPRO
03-28-2012, 12:13 AM
You guys are making it out like they are going to come and force him to shut his business down and destroy his life, They said its against the regs to run a business from the house, if he doesn't stop they will start to fine him. They cant "put you out of business" the worst they can do is make you rent a shop like a big boy and hopefully stop you from cluttering your neighborhood with commercial trucks and trailers. Big whoop. be glad you got away with it for this long and move on.

richardcog
03-28-2012, 12:55 AM
It is the same where I live. I had to get a unit but I love it now cause when I come home my work stay there and i can be a father and a husband

ReddensLawnCare
03-28-2012, 01:05 AM
You guys are making it out like they are going to come and force him to shut his business down and destroy his life, They said its against the regs to run a business from the house, if he doesn't stop they will start to fine him. They cant "put you out of business" the worst they can do is make you rent a shop like a big boy and hopefully stop you from cluttering your neighborhood with commercial trucks and trailers. Big whoop. be glad you got away with it for this long and move on.
I'm glad your back in action. Haha
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CLARK LAWN
03-28-2012, 02:50 AM
If there are other people running businesses out of their homes in your neighborhood get the addresses (keep them to your self) and let the city know that you will be filing discrimination charges(via an attorney).
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lawnlandscape
03-28-2012, 08:35 AM
Here is a picture of what my home looks like on a daily basis. Its not messy or cluttered.

I am VERY clean.

The second picture is half way up my driveway. All my stuff is 300'+ deep behind my house.

lawnlandscape
03-28-2012, 08:40 AM
If your really making "hundreds of thousands of dollars a year" like you say then it should be no big deal to rent a small commercial space to store your equipment.

Quit crying about it and go rent a place, This is the risk you take when operating a business from a residential zoned area.

Do you understand there is a difference between sales and profit?

There is no way it will be possible to get a place suitable and move everything within a week.

I have spent over $80,000 retrofitting my property to be able to handle my stuff. Including many repairs to the garage, adding heat and a gas line, ect.

My company is extremely over extended right now expecially with the lack of a winter we just had.

lawnlandscape
03-28-2012, 08:44 AM
Then you have guys ALL OVER TOWN, with these types of things in their FRONT YARDS.

lawnlandscape
03-28-2012, 08:47 AM
More Examples:

djagusch
03-28-2012, 09:07 AM
I would find a storage unit or secure out door storage for the time being.

Seeing the pics of the house and others answers a lot. While your place looks clean, the garage area does not seem residential. Most likely the guys with the poor looking yards got complaints and called you out as you run a buisness also.

I would snap some pictures, get some letters from the neighbors adjoining your property. Then go to the city admin stating your case and see if he has some suggestings.

You might also ask if your employee takes a work vehicle/trailer home daily would the one truck in the driveway meet code. Think of a dish tv installer that brings the work van home (these typically are subcontractors also).
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THEGOLDPRO
03-28-2012, 09:20 AM
Do you understand there is a difference between sales and profit?


Maybe you don't understand, It DOES NOT MATTER if you are selling things from your house or just storing equipment there. its all the same as far as they are concerned,

The zoning laws here state this and im assuming its the same there.

"There shall be no evidence of any office or home enterprise outside the building in which it is located,

The office or home enterprise and the conduct thereof shall not impair the residential character of the premises, Nor impair the reasonable use.enjoyment and value of other residential property in the neighborhood".

You are leaving vehicles and equipment outside which is impairing the residential value of the area. The reason for these laws is because i'm quite sure your neighbors and the other people on the street don't wanna see or hear your trucks/trailers every day when they are sleeping.

I can tell you from experiance that this was not the city just picking on you SOMEONE called them and made a complaint, once a complaint is made the city has to look into it. So it doesn't matter how cool you are with the people around you someone called and made a stink about it. It might even be another local company that doesnt like you.

XYZLawnPros
03-28-2012, 02:44 PM
This is what happens when you play by their rules. It looks as
though you are a competent business owner. If you begged
and pleaded for their licenses and their bullsh!t contracts you
are required to do as those contracts state. Assuming you don't
have standing title to your property also means you are trapped
in their invisible contract. Rescind all of the contracts you have
entered to get you to this controversy, then turn it all around on
them. Sue each and every player civilly (judges, city attorneys,
legislatures, everyone in the office where this gentleman came
from, etc). Maybe if we all had a business that looks as competent
as yours, and all of us started pushing back against this financial
slavery, sh!t would change. Remember, ALL legal employees work
for the same people. Your better off representing yourself if you go
into a court.

GMLC
03-28-2012, 03:33 PM
You spent 80k on your home property to support your business without checking to see if the city would allow you to operate from home? I guess you have no choice but to relocate now. It's one of those things that you can get away with until you get caught.
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OakNut
03-28-2012, 03:44 PM
I had to get a home occupancy permit for operating a business from my home.

There are rules one must play by - sort of like having insurance, this is one of the things you have to check into before starting a business.
What "someone else" does is mostly irrelevant.

Bunton Guy
03-28-2012, 08:55 PM
I had the same thing. Built a shop at the house because zoning said it was ok and that as long as everything business wise is inside I would be ok. Neighbor still didn't like it and after building a $40,000 shop It was useless. Cound't use it because even when I moved all business matter away to make my neighbor happy and to stop his lawsuit. If I even went into the shop and made noise working on anything even personal he video taped the "noise" and took me back to court again and again getting me into more trouble with the county.

landscaper22
03-28-2012, 10:02 PM
Another fine example of what your "wonderful" government is doing for you! Some of you miss the point. It is one thing to move into a neighborhood with ordinances. It is a totally another issue when a government steps in and tells you that you are not allowed to park your vehicles on your property. I am sure there's a loophole somewhere. I would be on the phone with an attorney tomorrow morning. At least get a little advice, and you can figure out if you stand a chance. It may boil down to what will cost more your attorney fees, or compliance. Keep us updated!

OakNut
03-28-2012, 10:19 PM
Another fine example of what your "wonderful" government is doing for you! Some of you miss the point. It is one thing to move into a neighborhood with ordinances. It is a totally another issue when a government steps in and tells you that you are not allowed to park your vehicles on your property. I am sure there's a loophole somewhere. I would be on the phone with an attorney tomorrow morning. At least get a little advice, and you can figure out if you stand a chance. It may boil down to what will cost more your attorney fees, or compliance. Keep us updated!

I don't know if I missed "the point", but I don't think the government "stepped in" out of the blue and made up the rules AFTER the OP had set up shop and started running a business where he was apparently not permitted to do so.

As far as government "intrusion" goes, I have mixed feelings on this. I'm not allowed to have employees park at my home. I'm not allowed to store "supplies" outside (think bagged materials/mulch/etc), no "commercial vehicles", and a few other things. I don't want them telling me what I can and can not do on MY property, yet at the same time I don't live in a rural setting and I'd be freaking ticked if my next door neighbor (20' from me) started a motorcycle repair shop, and began piling up parts, old, broken bikes, tires, etc, and revving up dirt bikes at all hours of the day. (or ANY hour of the day for that matter)

There's a certain standard that folks should expect in a neighborhood - I'm OK with the restrictions placed upon me as a business owner. If I don't like the rules, I could move to a more suitable location where commercial vehicles and such are not an issue.

For the sake of the OP, I hope it's something as simple as applying for a proper permit, or working with them to make everyone happy. I hate to see any small business owner shut down.

wbw
03-28-2012, 11:51 PM
If I have to rent something then half of my property is useless to me. My business pays me rent to use that space. I would lose out on that rent, and I would have to pay for some other place. It would be devastating to me and my business.
Posted via Mobile Device

If renting a storage space would truly be devastating to your business, maybe they are doing you a favor.

Seriously, find a place to park that enclosed trailer that has some visiblity and get some advertising for your buck. Then rent a storage unit and park one truck and triler in there. i know you are out $200 a month. Sorry.

willretire@40
03-29-2012, 06:02 AM
I would not say anything to the city and move equipment away for a month or two. Then put up a fence blocking the view of your backyard. Then move your equipment back home.

If you go to the city and lose then they have that on record and you will not ever be able to come back to using your house for business.

Just walk away quietly and then come back and see if you can get in another 3 years before you get another complaint. The fence may block it enough that you will never get another complaint.

cgaengineer
03-29-2012, 07:51 AM
The city sets the ordinance, you have to live with it. It's the same way in many towns across the USA...I, like another poster think you should have right to use your property, but at the same time your use should not affect my values.

Someone obviously thinks you are affecting their property value...maybe the guy complaining had to move his equipment last year?
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corey4671
03-29-2012, 08:45 AM
As the chairman of our local planning commission and board of zoning and appeals my advice to you would be to get a petition signed by your neighbors stating that they don't mind. Apply for a variance through your board of zoning and appeals. You will be given a chance to plead your case and there should be given an opportunity for public input. Encourage your neighbors to attend and speak in favor of you. What you have is a codes Nazi but there should be a board of zoning an appeals in place if your city has a zoning ordinance. It will likely cost you a small fee which should be less than an attorney's fee. That's where I would start. If that fails, them move on to plan b
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PROCUT1
03-29-2012, 10:00 AM
Why is this a shock?

This is why they have zoning. Residential areas are for living. Commercial areas for business. What is so hard to understand about that?

Ive been through the same stuff before where I lived. I bought a piece of commercial property zoned for exactly what I wanted to do with it. Moved my stuff there and moved into the house. No zoning change needed or anything. Within a couple months I got my first visit. You see. Even though it was zoned for what I wanted to do, I still needed a permit. Long story short it was going to cost $25,000 in engineering and fees to get that permit. I bought the property for nothing. But that was my own fault.

If your neighbor had a small trucking company and a big driveway, why cant he park a couple of tractor trailers there?

Your other neighbor wants to open a restaurant in his living room.
Another neighbor is a mechanic, wants to open a shop in his garage.

Well........

You also have other neighbors who want to live in a residential area free of business activity. So they move into a properly zoned area for that.

You chose to try and skirt the rules. And got caught.

If youre going to be a big boy business. Then you have to play by big boy rules.

Dr.NewEarth
03-29-2012, 01:48 PM
I stopped putting advertising on our trucks and that seems to keep the bylaw orificers away.

One of your neighbors or some-one in your area complained, regardless of what you've been told.

Weekend cut easymoney
03-29-2012, 06:45 PM
Mostly here in Texas, they allow some exceptions to people trying to make a buck-
-there is a difference between just storing equipment and whether or not you have customers coming and going-
--it all has to do with what your neighbors think...someone had it out for you and called the cops
-I would NOT recommend only moving your equipment for 3 months...I'd move it and build the fence in the same month and then wait like 6 months and move your stuff back in--the city guy will hate to come out and keep inspecting only to find no violations and likly give up-
OR-go down and plead your case and use the words...I'm just trying to get by...times are tough-

Roger
03-29-2012, 09:05 PM
The title of the thread is not correct. It should read: "My city is enforcing the regulations, and I am in a bind."

It is not their intent to put you out of business, as the title, and descriptions suggest. They are enforcing regulations that are in force. You may wish them to be selective about enforcing the regs, but, if that be the case, then what other ones do you suggest they enforce selectively?

Cadzilla
03-29-2012, 10:59 PM
Technically your not running a business from your home.All your business is done else where. Also how are your trucks registered if they are in your name it's private property.Just like the family Yugo.

Wrong.


You also shaould ask where the source of the complaint was. If all else fails find the little jerk and put some fear into him.

None of his business.

How wild west of you.

If renting a storage space would truly be devastating to your business, maybe they are doing you a favor.



lol

I stopped putting advertising on our trucks and that seems to keep the bylaw orificers away.

One of your neighbors or some-one in your area complained, regardless of what you've been told.

No kidding? And it's more than likely illegal to run service vehicles without lettering and certainly is if they meet DOT specs and from the pics they look like they do so....another bad "idear."

landscaper22
03-30-2012, 01:58 PM
I don't know if I missed "the point", but I don't think the government "stepped in" out of the blue and made up the rules AFTER the OP had set up shop and started running a business where he was apparently not permitted to do so.

As far as government "intrusion" goes, I have mixed feelings on this. I'm not allowed to have employees park at my home. I'm not allowed to store "supplies" outside (think bagged materials/mulch/etc), no "commercial vehicles", and a few other things. I don't want them telling me what I can and can not do on MY property, yet at the same time I don't live in a rural setting and I'd be freaking ticked if my next door neighbor (20' from me) started a motorcycle repair shop, and began piling up parts, old, broken bikes, tires, etc, and revving up dirt bikes at all hours of the day. (or ANY hour of the day for that matter)

There's a certain standard that folks should expect in a neighborhood - I'm OK with the restrictions placed upon me as a business owner. If I don't like the rules, I could move to a more suitable location where commercial vehicles and such are not an issue.

For the sake of the OP, I hope it's something as simple as applying for a proper permit, or working with them to make everyone happy. I hate to see any small business owner shut down.

Although I understand, when government gets involved, it never ends. It's always nice to have government step in when your neighbor has a problem, or does something you don't like. But, every law and ordinance has unintended consequences, and sooner or later will be used against you too. You know, local and Federal governments keep screaming they are out of money, etc., yet they can pay people to ride around looking for mundane city ordinance violations. Must be nice. I am not against neighborhood ordinances. If you live in a million dollar house on a golf course, you probably don't want your neighbor parking a tractor trailer next to your, or putting up a pink fence and purple shed. But governments are getting too bid for their own pants.

landscaper22
03-30-2012, 02:11 PM
The city sets the ordinance, you have to live with it. It's the same way in many towns across the USA...I, like another poster think you should have right to use your property, but at the same time your use should not affect my values.

Someone obviously thinks you are affecting their property value...maybe the guy complaining had to move his equipment last year?
Posted via Mobile Device

That's the problem right there. No, you don't have to live with it. If everyone has that attitude, we will be like North Korea. Again, there is a difference in having neighborhood ordinances and having the government tell you at gun point (more or less) that you can't do something. I know I am arguing with brick walls. But people better start watching out and stop being comfortable with all this control. Plus, what burns me up most is they keep passing these city ordinances, and much of the time the ordinance is put into law because the issue is a pet peeve of someone that has law making power in the city. So, their pet peeve becomes an ordinance so someone can ride around all day fining people for violating the ordinance
Example: A city in my area has a "Tree Topping" ordinance. Every tree on commercial and historical properties has to maintain its "natural flow". SO the city horticultural manager couldn't stand the fact that people butcher crepe myrtles. Okay, so people shouldn't butcher crepe myrtles. But you know, it's your d*$@ tree, and they should be able to do whatever they want with it. So, city adds crepe myrtles to list of trees that can't be topped off. So, this is passed and is strictly enforced, even though they didn't properly let people know. So they ride around making people replace crepe myrtles that have been butchered of face a fine. Now, this is the kind of thing we shouldn't have to just "DEAL WITH" Dealing with these things is what has this nation to the level it is at now.

Meezer
03-30-2012, 09:46 PM
OP,

I had a somewhat similar situation over a dozen years ago. A new "progressive" administration came into power in town. They changed things for the worse. In the end, I moved everything across the nearby state line in to a more "business friendly" state. It cost me money, however, my attorney inflicted monetary damage to the other side as well.

Keep in mind, if you can't operate any type of entity, business, etc., in a residential neighborhood, neither can the mayor, the police chief, code enforcement, etc.,. engage in business. Equal protection under the law & a good creative lawyer are 2 good things to have on your side.

chipk1
03-31-2012, 10:30 AM
Dude. I hate to say this but the pics you posted look like a landscape business is located in your back yard. I can see what the city is saying. I run a 1 truck business from my home, but my equipment is parked behind my privacy fence. My neighbors do not have to look at my stuff. I know it sucks, but you have grown beyond a reasonable point to be running form your home. I don't think they would have bothered you if they could not see anything from the road.

grass-scapes
03-31-2012, 11:01 AM
I received a letter from the COUNTY here about 4 years ago. I don't live in the city limits. Told me pretty much the same thing. I rented a warehouse facility and moved everything. Changed to a smaller place late last year and moved some of my stuff back to my house. I am not operating out of my house, but I have too much stuff stored here. Waiting on another complaint, but the person who I think complained the first time had his house foreclosed on. Rules are rules, laws are laws. I was mad at the time too, but did what I needed to do.

I think they have a saying... Ignorance of the law isn't an excuse. Something like that, anyway.

I am all for property rights, but I agree with the city on this one. I can almost guarantee it was an immediate neighbor. I wouldn't tell you if I called the city either.

Kiril
03-31-2012, 11:03 AM
I am so speechless right now. I don't know what to do. Yesterday some guy was walking down the street going door to door looking for the 'landscaper', that's how hard it was for him to find me. It was the Manager of Planning and Zoning.

Finally, after he found me, he told me its illegal to run a business like yours from your residence. I do live in the city, but the lots are about 3/4 of an acre in my area. I moved into this home 3+ years ago and have been operating off this property ever since.

Everything having to do with my business is not located anywhere near the street, and everything other then 2 trucks and 2 trailers is inside my 1,500 sq. ft. garage. I don't have any material piles, or any other equipment outside. Its VERY neat and clean.

There are countless of other guys within the city that literally have mowers lined up and topsoil and mulch piles on there front.. yes front.. yards.

Today I got a letter in the mail that says, "You are in violation of city zoning ordinances and you have until APRIL 6th to CEASE OPERATIONS OF THIS ILLEGAL BUSINESS LOCATED AT 16** N. 7TH STREET.

If the business remains operating after April 6th citations may be issued and this matter may be forwarded to the City Attorney for further action.

The guy said he got some kind of complaint, but I have a very good relationship with ALL my immediate neighbors and know it was not them. They all think this is ridiculous.

What can I do!!??

Do they really expect me to close my business within the next 10 days?!?

I only have one employee but I do hundreds of thousands in sales each year and I have hundreds of customers.

Why does this have to happen at the busiest time of the year!!! :cry:

Sounds like one of those "lowball" whiners from lawnsite ratted you out so they can take your customers.

THEGOLDPRO
03-31-2012, 11:10 AM
lol the op was hoping we would all have a pity party with him and feel bad for him breaking the rules.

PROCUT1
03-31-2012, 12:35 PM
You can argue all you want about government interference but in cases like this, most people want government interference.

I live in a residential subdivision. Its quiet. Its zoned residential. There is hardly any traffic on my street. I like it. Its why I moved here.

If my neighbor started a business at his house and now employees are showing up. Trucks and trailers are coming and going. And the property now looks like a truck yard, you bet I would complain.

Most guys get away with it. Small, owner operated, one truck operations. Most neighbors dont have a problem with.

Across the street the guy works for a towing company. He brings a tow truck home at night and parks in his driveway. Nobody complains. My neighbor has a lettered electricians van that he parks next to his house.

Down the street is a landscaper with a truck and trailer. He has a driveway with trees on both sides. He parks there and you drive by and dont notice it. Nobody complains.

I know the guy behind me is doing car repairs out of his house. He has a big garage with a lift. But you cant tell. He brings one car at a time. Works in the garage, door closed. No signs, no parking, it just looks like a house. Most of the neighbors have him work on their cars. The city knows about him. But again. Nobody complains.

I have 5 sealcoat trucks and trailers and a dozen employees that come to work everyday. If I had all that at my house, and all my employee cars coming and going, wouldnt my neighbors who bought a house in a quiet residential neighborhood have a right to complain?

Why cant Brickman buy a house in a residential neighborhood and use it as a terminal?

When you grow a business you have to be prepared for the additional overhead you are going to incur. Real businesses have to have a place to store their equipment. If you want to play in that arena you have to do the same.

I dont like paying rent for a shop. But its part of doing business.

Kelly's Landscaping
03-31-2012, 10:18 PM
Here is a picture of what my home looks like on a daily basis. Its not messy or cluttered.

I am VERY clean.

The second picture is half way up my driveway. All my stuff is 300'+ deep behind my house.

I was totally on your side till you posted picks of the tiny lot and those homes nearly touching yours. I think it depends on your lot and I do not know if that's the norm for a neighborhood where you live. We have places like that here as well but there is also plenty of spread out country roads where no one cares if you run a business off your property. I think your renting for now and looking for a new location like a 2-5 acre old farm where you can live and run a business on your property again. And if you do find that decide if you are going to be under the radar again or if you want a variance before you invest in shop buildings again.

Meezer
03-31-2012, 10:31 PM
I can almost guarantee it was an immediate neighbor. I wouldn't tell you if I called the city either.

Yeah, more often than not, it's a neighbor calling & complaining. That's what the code enforcement have told me in the past. The only time that anyone from the city was really aggressive was when they passed the city sticker ordnance. I saw the cops going into peoples driveways, etc., checking to see if they had the stickers in their windshields. If they didn't, they wrote out tickets & left them on the vehicles.

Snyder's Lawn Inc
03-31-2012, 10:48 PM
I am so speechless right now. I don't know what to do. Yesterday some guy was walking down the street going door to door looking for the 'landscaper', that's how hard it was for him to find me. It was the Manager of Planning and Zoning.

Finally, after he found me, he told me its illegal to run a business like yours from your residence. I do live in the city, but the lots are about 3/4 of an acre in my area. I moved into this home 3+ years ago and have been operating off this property ever since.

Everything having to do with my business is not located anywhere near the street, and everything other then 2 trucks and 2 trailers is inside my 1,500 sq. ft. garage. I don't have any material piles, or any other equipment outside. Its VERY neat and clean.

There are countless of other guys within the city that literally have mowers lined up and topsoil and mulch piles on there front.. yes front.. yards.

Today I got a letter in the mail that says, "You are in violation of city zoning ordinances and you have until APRIL 6th to CEASE OPERATIONS OF THIS ILLEGAL BUSINESS LOCATED AT 16** N. 7TH STREET.

If the business remains operating after April 6th citations may be issued and this matter may be forwarded to the City Attorney for further action.

The guy said he got some kind of complaint, but I have a very good relationship with ALL my immediate neighbors and know it was not them. They all think this is ridiculous.

What can I do!!??

Do they really expect me to close my business within the next 10 days?!?

I only have one employee but I do hundreds of thousands in sales each year and I have hundreds of customers.

Why does this have to happen at the busiest time of the year!!! :cry:

Well there goes your over head You need a place in the right zone to run your business
I Think its funny sorry
Around here someone pops up running a business from there house and having there mowers and other stuff at there home
I turn them in
I had to be in the right Zone with my business I think everybody should be

Roger
04-01-2012, 07:52 AM
Question to the OP:

What happened during the permitting process when you constructed your $80K storage building? To get a building permit, you needed to provide drawings, plot plan, and a statement of intended use. Also, for a building this size, an inspector would have made at least one visit to the property.

Why wasn't this issue caught at the time of getting your building permit? Why didn't the permitting agency in the municipality flag this as a violation at that time? Putting up an $80K building on a lot that small (from your pics) would have been unique. This isn't your typical garden shed to put a lawn tractor and some hand tools away. It should have been obvious to those responsible for issuing the permit, and doing the inspection, that the building had intentions other than a typical homeowner.

grandview (2006)
04-01-2012, 08:01 AM
What permit? Around here you need to be at least 5 ft of the property line for a structure.

grandview (2006)
04-01-2012, 08:06 AM
Cadzilla,It is debatable about running it out of your home. Mostly it is based on town code. But there has been IRS cases against doctors who try and use home office deductions and are not allowed because they say they don't work at home but in a hospital , so you could use that argument that your don't work at home but somewhere else.

Duekster
04-01-2012, 09:12 AM
You can not do what I saw in the picture in most cities. I have one truck in my drive way. Nothing has been said but I know some HOA's will not allow PU trucks of any type to be parked anywhere but inside the garage.

Get a shop.

wbw
04-01-2012, 09:19 AM
You can argue all you want about government interference but in cases like this, most people want government interference.

I live in a residential subdivision. Its quiet. Its zoned residential. There is hardly any traffic on my street. I like it. Its why I moved here.

If my neighbor started a business at his house and now employees are showing up. Trucks and trailers are coming and going. And the property now looks like a truck yard, you bet I would complain.

Most guys get away with it. Small, owner operated, one truck operations. Most neighbors dont have a problem with.

Across the street the guy works for a towing company. He brings a tow truck home at night and parks in his driveway. Nobody complains. My neighbor has a lettered electricians van that he parks next to his house.

Down the street is a landscaper with a truck and trailer. He has a driveway with trees on both sides. He parks there and you drive by and dont notice it. Nobody complains.

I know the guy behind me is doing car repairs out of his house. He has a big garage with a lift. But you cant tell. He brings one car at a time. Works in the garage, door closed. No signs, no parking, it just looks like a house. Most of the neighbors have him work on their cars. The city knows about him. But again. Nobody complains.

I have 5 sealcoat trucks and trailers and a dozen employees that come to work everyday. If I had all that at my house, and all my employee cars coming and going, wouldnt my neighbors who bought a house in a quiet residential neighborhood have a right to complain?

Why cant Brickman buy a house in a residential neighborhood and use it as a terminal?

When you grow a business you have to be prepared for the additional overhead you are going to incur. Real businesses have to have a place to store their equipment. If you want to play in that arena you have to do the same.

I dont like paying rent for a shop. But its part of doing business.

Bingo. None of my trucks are lettered and I get long well with my neighbors (probably because I kiss their butts to avoid this) and fortunately I don't have any trailers. My kid comes to visit I make him park around the corner so it isn't so cluttered around my house. Any day now the home owners association is going to run me off and I am not looking forward to it. but when it happens, it happens. I know it is coming and while I won't like it, it is my own fault.

I am just happy to have the problem of where do I put all my stuff instead of the problem of no work.

PNW Landscaper
04-02-2012, 07:33 PM
Lawyer up... money well spent for this situation, you could be halted until you find new land. That can't happen.

Fvstringpicker
04-03-2012, 12:51 AM
If I have to rent something then half of my property is useless to me. My business pays me rent to use that space. I would lose out on that rent, and I would have to pay for some other place. It would be devastating to me and my business.
Posted via Mobile Device

Since I don't know the city you live, I can't check the code of ordinance. Many places have no restrictions against parking lettered/business vehicles unless they are a certain length. Allowing me to park a personal vehicle but stopping you from parking a similar business vehicle is unequal treatment under the law. Nevertheless, if you're violating zoning laws by operating your business there and your F'd.
What really surprises me however is that you have a business licenses, apparently at your address, with no certificate of occupancy that confirms the zoning for business property. It appears a worse case is that you will have to rent space that is properly zoned. You know your explaining accounting for rent as basically taking money out of one pocket and putting in the other. You are not both losing rental revenue and having to pay rent.

grass-scapes
04-03-2012, 06:07 AM
Since I don't know the city you live, I can't check the code of ordinance. Many places have no restrictions against parking lettered/business vehicles unless they are a certain length. Allowing me to park a personal vehicle but stopping you from parking a similar business vehicle is unequal treatment under the law. Nevertheless, if you're violating zoning laws by operating your business there and your F'd.
What really surprises me however is that you have a business licenses, apparently at your address, with no certificate of occupancy that confirms the zoning for business property. It appears a worse case is that you will have to rent space that is properly zoned. You know your explaining accounting for rent as basically taking money out of one pocket and putting in the other. You are not both losing rental revenue and having to pay rent.

I think what he is saying is that his business is paying him personally rent to occupy the building. If he has to move, then his business pays someone else rent and he loses out on that income.

Roger
04-03-2012, 07:58 AM
lawnlandscape, ... still waiting for an answer to the building permit question. This should be a very simple answer.