Illegal conversion must be undone

Who's responsible: inspector, seller, appraiser?

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DEAR BARRY: The home I just bought has a workshop that was converted to a studio apartment, but no one told me that the conversion was not permitted. Now the city wants me to convert it back. I used all my money to buy the property and can’t afford the construction costs. No one disclosed this to me: not my home inspector, the appraiser, the seller, or the agent. Do I have any recourse? –Norman

DEAR NORMAN: Let’s run through the list of suspects:

1. The home inspector, if he was sharp and experienced, should have advised you to consult the building department to verify permits for the conversion.