xxxs, Home Buyer in Brookline, MA

I am buying a 2 bed/2 bath and want to separate the living room area to add the third bed. What else do I need?

Asked by xxxs, Brookline, MA Sat Nov 3, 2012

This additional room will have it's closet and window. I also got the approval from condo association. Do I need to pull the permit to do the work? Is it legal to call the unit a 3 bed/2 bath while renting?

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Kevin Vitali’s answer
Before going through all the trouble make sure the town allows a third bedroom. If you sink all of this money into it and then can't sell as a three bedroom or legally rent as a three bedroom, you may have spent the money for no reason.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 4, 2012
Make sure the town allows you to add a bedroom, even though the association has approved.
I would say a permit is required if you ever plan to sell it.
You can always call it a 2 bedroom with an extra sleeping area.

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0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 4, 2012
Anytime you do construction on a property you are suppose to pull a building permit. Yes the Condo association and documents would be key to your abiltiy to do as you wish.

You can call it anything you want. Legality only would come into play if you were selling it and the newly constructed room does not meet the requirements for a bed room (at least 70 sq ft and an egress window, you dont even need a closet)

How one uses the property would be up to them. Many properties use their living room, dining room and or porches as bed rooms and advertise them as such.

Remember the type of space, size of space and the rent will dictate the type of tenants you get. Families - students - professionals all of which can have their own issues to you as a landlord and your neighbors.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 4, 2012
You should pull the permit. The Assessor's Department typically changes assessments (2-bedroom to 3) based on permits pulled. Plus, if it is not legally acknowledged as a 3-bedroom and someone thinks it is not legit and reports you, you could have to kick out one of the tenants. And may have to pay a fine. Towns where there is a high population of students are sensitive to illegally overcrowding apartments.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 3, 2012
I would find out if the condo association requires you to pull a permit. Many of the Associations will. Plus, if you are having contractors work in the unit, the Association (and you yourself) may want to protect against potential damage by making sure that the contractor is insured and bonded.

As to whether it is legal - if you want to do it properly, you would have to call the Brookline Assessors Department to come in to reassess the unit in its new condition (3br/2ba) as opposed to a 2br/2ba. This would likely result in higher taxes. However, your unit would be stated to be a 3br/2ba at the Town Hall.

To be 100% sure, talk to an Attorney. They will be able to give you more accurate answers about the legality.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 3, 2012
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