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Author Topic: ET - Homeowner can keep house, but must remove part of deck  (Read 757 times)
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GDouglas
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« on: October 23, 2009, 12:07:03 PM »

from the Eagle TRibune

Homeowner can keep house, but must remove part of deck
By Eric Parry
eparry@eagletribune.com
October 23, 2009 01:24 am



LONDONDERRY — The Scobie Pond homeowner who built his house too close to his neighbor's property can keep his foundation, but will have to tear down a deck.

The zoning board's decision Wednesday night to allow Robert Cook to keep his 38 Brewster Road home reverses an August decision the board made which would have required Cook to tear down a portion of his house.

Cook's attorney, William Mason, told the board that building his house about 3 feet too close to his neighbor's property line was an honest mistake. He said his client didn't notice it until after the home was built.

"He didn't build this house knowing that he had a violation or in spite of what your building codes are," Mason said.

Cook didn't learn the home was in violation of local building codes, which require homes to be constructed at least 15 feet from the property line, until the final inspection of his home this summer, Mason said.

When the home was designed, he used a septic system plan that said the width of the lot was 59 feet when it was actually 55 feet, Mason said.

He knew it was a small lot, so Cook told the contractor hired for the project to center the foundation in the middle of the lot, Mason said.

"Somewhere the ball got dropped a bit to nipping this in the bud before the certificate of occupancy permit," Mason said.

Cook was originally denied the waiver in August, two months after his split-level, two-bedroom home was built. On Oct. 2, the zoning board agreed to retry the case.

The house has caused problems for Cook's neighbor because of its location.

Eric Holland, owner of 36 Brewster Road, said his property has suffered drainage problems and his home has been devalued by at least $40,000 because of Cook's construction.

"The value of my house has been adversely affected," Holland said.

Holland complained that in addition to the house itself, Cook installed a 4-foot-wide deck and two air-conditioning units on the side of the house.

The zoning board agreed that the deck on one side of the home should be removed.

Holland said yesterday he's pleased with the decision.

"I didn't really want to be against him and have him tear his house down," he said.

http://www.eagletribune.com/punewsnh/local_story_296012403.html
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Glenn Douglas
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