Gabriela Pon…, Other/Just Looking in North Hollywood, CA

Trying to sell a house due to a divorce.

Asked by Gabriela Ponce, North Hollywood, CA Sat Apr 14, 2012

Its a 4 bedroom home with 2 bathrooms. The garage has been converted with no permit. Are able to sell as is or do we have to take care of the garage?

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Johnny James’ answer
Make sure you disclose this material fact to your agent so that he or she can disclose it in the listing. It will not stop you from selling your home but can effect the buyers financing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 15, 2012
Dear Gabriela,
It would be best for you (price, speed of sale,etc) if you either bring the garage up to code, or turn it back into a garage. It's very difficult for even the best buyers to get a bank to finance with un permitted work. If you leave the work, the appraiser will omit it when setting a value, however, it's much easier to sell a home that does NOT have un permitted work .
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat May 25, 2013
Just call 818 590 3025 and I will take care of it.

Hope to see you both happy with the results.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Aug 12, 2012
Just like everyone else has said, you can still sell it as is and you need to disclose it to any potential buyer. You will have a problem with FHA and VA buyers due to their loan requirements and restrictions. There are many, many homes being sold with garage conversions or some type of unpermitted work done so its not uncommon. I live in and focus my work in North Hollywood so feel free to give me a ring if you want to run anything by me or have any other questions you need answered. Take care!

John K. Byers
(818) 689-7134
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
Hi Gabriela,

In the City of Los Angeles, you will be able to sell the property without having to have the garage permitted, but you must disclose the fact that it is not permitted to any potential buyer. Also, an appraiser will not consider any unpermitted additions to a property when calculating the value, so the additional square footage of the garage conversion will not count towards the overall value of the house. Certain cities such as Pasadena require a Certificate of Occupancy to be issued each time a home is sold, and any unpermitted additions must be brought up to code. The City of LA does not have such a requirement.

Hope this helps - let me know if you have any questions.

John Barry, Realtor
DRE #01856079
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage
Cell: 323-810-7976
Twitter: @RealtorJB
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012

Sorry to hear about your divorce. It is not an easy thing to go through - I know because I have been there.

It will depend on the buyer's lender to a large extent. I can tell you that if the buyer will be getting an FHA loan then the property will not qualify because FHA will not lend on a property with unpermitted conversions so you would need to address the garage under those circumstances. Full disclosure up front is the best move, and then it would be up to the guidelines of a buyer's lender whether or not they will approve the financing.

There are many homes in the Valley that have unpermitted conversions and many sell without any problems. It is important to know that you may face the possibility of having to convert the garage back to a working garage in order to sell, but I would try putting it on the market without making any changes, disclosing the conversion, and going from there.

If you would like information on the value of your home, I would be happy to provide you with a complimentary market evaluation so feel free to contact me.


Angie Simpson
Coldwell Banker
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
Hi Gabriela,
You can try to sell it as is, but if you have a buyer who is getting an FHA loan, then you can have a problem. Do you have a carport? It depends on the type of conversion, is it just a room, or do you have a bathroom/kitchen?? Let me know if I can be of help.
Best regards,

Liliana Alfonso
Rodeo Realty
12345 Ventura Blvd.
Studio City, CA 91604
818-414-0396 cell
818-761-7277 fax
DRE # 01759367
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
If you are going to sell as is then you must disclose that the garage conversion is not permitted. In this case the appraisal by the buyer's lender is probably going to be a "subject to" appraisal: in other words the appraiser requires a re-inspection after the garage is brought back to code. I have also seen appraisals going "as is" which means the appraiser is giving the valuation without any changes. Difficult to say which way it goes. Being a divorce situation you may have a difficult time effecting changes before listing so it may be worthwhile to list it with a full disclosure of the garage conversion. During escrow if this becomes an issue with the buyer's (lender/appraiser) you may then have to make the changes back to code.

Bob Khalsa
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012

All cities are different. If you need to obtain a certificate of occupancy, the city may require you to convert back before issuing a C of O. You will need this in order to close.

If you do not need a C of O in North Hollywood in order to close title, you can sell as - is.

Your Friend,

Joseph "Joe Oz" Ossichak III
NJAR Circle of Excellence 2009, 2010, 2011
Real Estate Consultant
RE/MAX - The Real Estate Leaders
107 Tindall Road - Executive Suites
cell: 732.773.3108
Office: 732.933.0200 x 307

Text: JOEOZ to: 87778
Search all MLS listings and view prices, square footage, taxes, features, maps, pictures and more! The "Call" feature will connect you to me if you have questions.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
Hi Gabriela,

You should be able to sell as-is. If the buyer is going to be financing, then you will not know until the buyer is in process of getting their loan and appraisal has been done - if their lender will require any repairs regarding the garage. Feel free to contact me for an estimate of fair market value of your property or visit

Good luck,
Sara Mehrpouyan CDPE
Rodeo Realty
Direct 818-903-2040
Dre License #01712757
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
You may be able to sell as is without reconversion.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
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