Report: #813939


  • Submitted: Mon, December 26, 2011
  • Updated: Mon, December 26, 2011
  • Reported By: Emelia — West Hollywood California United States of America
    8300 Santa Monica Boulevard
    West Hollywood, California
    United States of America


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My husband and I have lived in our 1930's Hollywood bungalow for fifty years. West Hollywood building inspector Mr. Jeff Jones has condemned it as uninhabitable by modern day standards. He told us in a visit West Hollywood does not recognize the word Grandfathered. 

 Our bungalow  is small under 2000 square feet and was built in the early 1930's. We have maintained it over the decades replacing the cold water plumbing and upgrading the electrical from fuse box to breaker panel. We paint
the outside of our home every five or six years. My husband is retired and our income is very minimal. We do not maintain a garden but have a few trees and bushes in the front yard. All the years under the County of Los Angeles they
never demanded we open our doors for an inspection.

 A year ago I was served a notice by the City of West Hollywood that my wooden fence was inappropriate and had to be replaced or removed. I responded in writing that it had been there since 1960 when we purchased our home and no one had ever complained. The City's responded by sending me a notice I had to open up the entire property for inspection in 30 days. Hence came Mr. Jones who walked through my entire home writing down notes. When my husband asked if there were any problems his response was yes, many problems you will be notified.

We were notified and the list was enormous demanding among just a few things: we replace all the romex wiring which had been done by a contractor fifty years ago. The interior water heater had to be moved to outside the house. Our rear bedroom windows were too small and had to be enlarged and replaced to meet code. Our garage which was converted before we purchased the property to a pretty little guest house was to be converted back to a garage. The front yard fence was to be demolished because the gap between struts were to close together. There were twenty five additional code violations cited too many to list here.

 My husband called Mr. Jones for a meeting in our home to review the citations. We told Mr. Jones all the citations were not fair as we purchased the home and the garage conversion had already been done, the bedroom windows were as we purchased the house and the wiring was  done when under the County of Los Angeles. His response was shocking. He said he did not believe us and we would have to prove we did not make the renovations after the City of West Hollywood had formed. He said there were no permits on file and as far as he was concerned if we did not make the
repairs the City might have our home demolished. My husband became very agitated and tried arguing but Mr. Jones raised his voice and said, "I have a job to do and if you want to save your home just comply."

 Soon after Mr. Jones left my husband started to have a problem breathing and suffered a heart attack. He is in the hospital now and the doctors do not give him a good chance of recovery. Our family attorney plans on bringing a lawsuit
against the City but is holding off to see if there are other complaints filed with West Hollywood Concerned Citizens our local group representing owners in West Hollywood. Our attorney says it might be better to file a class action
lawsuit. He said to me the lawsuit could ask for $100,000,000.00 to compensate others. Please leave a rebuttal here if you also had a visit from Mr. Jones or other inspectors.
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