If we received a formal complaint from the city regarding the siding of our house falling off, can they legally require us to make repairs immediately?

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If we received a formal complaint from the city regarding the siding of our house falling off, can they legally require us to make repairs immediately?

We are aware of the issue with our siding but financially cannot repair all at once and because of

the type of siding insurance does not cover the repair. A neighbor filed an official complaint and the zoning inspector came out and we received a letter stating deteriorated exterior wall must be repaired according to a section in the maintenance code. There was no deadline, no parameters, just a very vague letter. Can they legally require these repairs if there is no harm to other’s property and we are attempting to save to fix the issue; 15-20k for repairs is huge. I was just

wondering what our legal options are and if they can fine us, legal action, etc.?

Asked on March 8, 2019 under Real Estate Law, Alabama

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If the condition of your siding is violating a city ordinance--and it must be violating the plain terms of a specific ordinance--then the city can require the repairs and can fine you if you don't make the repairs. It does not matter if there no is harm to others or if you have difficulty affording the reapairs: all that matters is whether the condition is violating the terms of an ordinance.


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