Who made my metal building?

Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by ispy, Oct 30, 2019.

  1. ispy

    ispy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    I didn't know where to put this question. I'm sure someone will move it if there's a better place for it. I've got a fairly simple question, but feel the need to tell a story of government obstruction and extortion first. Skip to the end if you just want to get to the question.

    My mother has a large property that I maintain for her. It's a 1.5 acre lot, outside city limits. On this property is a large metal building, quonset hut style, that the previous owner built some time prior to 1999, which is when my mother bought the property. This metal building is about 20' tall, 20' wide, and 40' long. The previous owner stored his RV and other toys there.

    Currently it has a gravel floor. I want to pour concrete, and enclose the ends. I don't want to create issues with "the man" for my mother, so I go to the permit office and ask about getting a permit to enclose the ends.

    I talk to a guy who pulls out the plot map and says they have no record of the building, just the barn it sits next to. I explain that it was there when mom bought the house, I have no idea how old it is, and I show the guy a picture. He says "Wow...if we'd known he [the previous owner] was putting it that close to the barn we'd never have approved it". This metal building is about 10' from a barn. The two buildings sit side by side, and they're both about the same size.

    So I tell the guy what I want to do and he says I need to first get a permit for the building, which starts with submission of architectural drawings. Once they review the drawings, they issue a permit, then I can legally build the building that's already there, then get my inspections done, then I can apply for a permit to enclose the ends, which starts with more architectural drawings. My main issue with this B.S. government bureaucracy is the fact that he already told me they never would have approved it in the first place, so I have no assurance that they're going to do anything but take my money and say "No." At that point they'd probably want me to file an application for a variance, which is just them dragging me through the mud some more, and also subject to the possibility of getting "No." Conceivably I suppose they could also make me take it down and/or move it if they were really feeling spunky.

    In hindsight, I should have just done what I want to do and plead ignorance if it becomes an issue. I suppose that's still a possibility, since my conversation at the permit office was informal, and he wasn't taking any notes or anything. The guy acted like he didn't really care, but was just reciting rule and policy for somebody asking. I don't get the feeling I'm now going to be on their radar, so to speak. I'm leaning in that direction.

    So my question...if I decide to do this totally legit, is there any way to determine who manufactured a metal building? There's no tags on it, or any company name stamped into any part of it that I could find. I suppose they're all pretty similar, but if I've got to get architectural drawings and have inspections, it should probably be the correct drawings. The only thing I could think of was just take some pictures and start emailing every manufacturer and asking "Is this one of yours?"

    Any thoughts appreciated.
  2. windflower

    windflower LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,399

    A neighboring landowner put up a building w/o permits or inspections. County inspections dept. said all they could do was approve it since it was already there.
    hort101 and Cam15 like this.
  3. Grassfire205

    Grassfire205 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 341

    Dont go back to govt office. Call concrete guy pour and close ends off. Go about day. They dont need to know what your doing. And technically they dont since they have no record of the building at all.
    hort101 and MNLawns like this.

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