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Old 05-26-2014, 06:09 PM  
NathanHale
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Default Slightly modifying a duplex

Hi Guys! hope all is well with everyone.

I am looking at a house i am planning on buying soon. It is a duplex. One unit on TOP of another. the front doors are next to each other. ( there is a picture down for illustration)
there are steps that lead to the second floor from the right front door.

i realized that if i make a hole through the wall behind the door of the LEFT front door i will have acess to the second floor stairs through the first floor without every having to exit the left front door.

i am planning on breaking that wall in question. it is NOT a supporting wall. I am NOT planning on ripping off the kitchen in the second floor. nor am i planning on combining the electric meters or gas meters. I might want to close the hole later and rent out the second floor after a long long time. I Just want to break a wall to be able to use the upstairs bedrooms.

My questions to you guys are:
a) do people do this often or am i the first one to think of this?
b) generally speaking do zoning/ code officers allow this to happen?
c) does it affect the overall tax status?
d) is it true that duplexes have less taxes than single units of the same size?

Thank you

19266346324ddd1f6eeb975.jpg



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Old 05-26-2014, 06:51 PM  
nealtw
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I would question the load bearing of that wall, the wall beside a staircase is often load bearing. You can still do it just make sure first.
I would have the wiring looked at to see if you can run on one meter if you are going to do this for a couple years.
Where I live the taxes would be higher for a duplex



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Old 05-26-2014, 07:23 PM  
NathanHale
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thank you. where i live duplexes are taxed less than single houses. i wonder why it is the opposite.

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Old 05-26-2014, 07:50 PM  
nealtw
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Getting them to change it wouldn't likely be worth changing it anyway.
You have checked the crawl space to make sure that wall isn't bearing. Even if you just have a double floor joist under iit,it might be.

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Old 05-26-2014, 08:51 PM  
NathanHale
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nealtw View Post
Getting them to change it wouldn't likely be worth changing it anyway.
You have checked the crawl space to make sure that wall isn't bearing. Even if you just have a double floor joist under iit,it might be.
that wall doesn't extend all the way into the basement ( if that helps to decide if it is load bearing)
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Old 05-26-2014, 09:37 PM  
nealtw
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Some times there is a beam built right into the floor so with a finished basement it can be hard to tell..
To be safe I would install a header anyway. two 2x10s nailed together supported with a stud under each end and another full height stud beside that. If it works out in the right place you might be able to remove two studs and fit the header between existing studs. The house won't fall down while you do this.



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