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AZ industrial rental permanent fixtures?

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  • AZ industrial rental permanent fixtures?

    I have been renting this shop for 2 years and was just notified by the owner and a police officer that I have been inhabiting a storage space. I was rented this space under the impression that it was a shop space for my woodshop, and now that the owner is being investigated by the city and the police, I learned that I must now move. He first gave me 60 days, then 90 days, and just today I found a notice under my door giving me 30 days notice to move. This is within a 3 day period. My biggest question is the following. May I remove the electric service that I installed to my shop from the main pannel and the electrical within the shop itself seeing as I was not notified that the zoning was not correct for the use intended for the space. I did sign a month to month agreement which was the only thing they were willing to allow me to sign, and now looking at it, it was an agreement intended for a storage space. The office told me when I signed it that it was because they lacked a proper agreement for the space. So again, can I remove the electrical wiring and fixtures that I bought and installed? The electrical is exposed in flexible metal clad conduit, and not hidden behind drywall or anything for that matter.

  • #2
    Re: AZ industrial rental permanent fixtures?

    A fixture that is permanently installed in a property is something that is fastened with screws, glue, or fasteners to the wall. Fixtures become a permanent part of the property once installed. If your electrical service is permanently installed or screwed to the walls, you cannot remove it without permission. Removing it will cause damages to the property which you would be responsible for. I suggest you call the LL and ask if you may remove this. If the unit is intended for storage only, he may grant permission for you to remove it.

    But may I ask why you installed permanent fixtures and improved the property under only a m2m agreement? He could have asked you to leave with no more than 30 days notice. Why would you sink that type of money into a property you didn't own or even have a long term lease on?


    • #3
      Re: AZ industrial rental permanent fixtures?

      The reason for installing gobs of electrical in a month to month situation was because at the time, there was nowhere else to go. I had to get jobs flowing again or my company would just go under. the only screws holding wires in are on little clips that can be easily tweaked to get the wire and conduit out. I have a feeling that the fact that they lied about the space in the first place might change things a bit though. I will be seeking a lawyer very shortly. I will also be reporting their poor business practices to the city as well. I just have to find somewhere to go first of all.


      • #4
        Re: AZ industrial rental permanent fixtures?

        This is a mere zoning issue. The consequences of renting out of the zoning is simply to fine the owner and have him go through the zoning board to get approval. This would be a problem if the tenant in that space had a lease. But without one, there is no problem.

        You would waste your money on an attorney. You have absolutely no basis for a lawsuit. While you were misinformed of the zoning status, you had NO LEASE. Without a lease, you had NO guarantee of being able to stay in that rental unit for more than one month. When the zoning problem was discovered, you received exactly the same amount of notice that you could have received at any point from the owner. M2m tenants can be asked to move at any time for absolutely no reason. You received no less notice than if he just decided he didn't want you there any more. So you were not harmed, nor received any less notice to vacate, than you were already subject to. You never had any promise of more than a month there. M2m agreements only allow you to stay for that month and no more. The owner or tenant can give written notice on the 1st of any month and you'd have to be out at the end of that month.

        If you had a lease and were forced to move with only 30 days notice, you would have a case. The lease would have guaranteed that you could remain in this location for your business for its duration. The zoning issue would have broken your lease and harmed you by forcing the relocation of your business. But by being only a m2m tenant, you never had any guarantee of that location for your business for more than any 30 day period. Sorry. But you should never accept a business space with only a m2m agreement. Your business can be forced to relocate at any time with only 30 days notice. (Obviously, it would not be smart to subject your business to this.) You should never put any money into a space rented on a monthly basis. Only make improvements to leased spaces so you get some useful life from them. And get it in writing that you may remove your improvements at the end of the lease. Somehow I doubt your agreement even addressed improvements, did it?

        Contact the LL and bluff. Tell him you are removing your electric and patching the holes. See what he says. He can sue you for removing improvements, but I doubt he will. You must leave the place in the same condition as you found it though, so you need to patch holes, paint if necessary, and return the place to its pre-rental condition. Search for a leased location for your business. Do not subject your business, customers, or employees to the whims of a m2m agreement.


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