View Full Version : Help Zoning Is Shutting Us Down!!

08-27-2008, 02:54 PM
I dont know details right now, but what are some things we will have to do to keep them off our case and stuff like that
what are some tips and help you can give me to get them to let us keep this up, we live in a township too which makes it worse

08-27-2008, 03:14 PM
It really depends on the situation. Give us as many details as you can. Things like:

Home haunt or professional?
Actual zoning of your land?
Do you charge?

Most importantly...what are they saying is the reason for closing you down. If you can give specifics there might be some people here who can give good advice. At least you're getting into this early!!!

08-27-2008, 03:24 PM
We are a home haunt. Hells Gate check it out on the other thread.
we are talking with them tommorow morning.
Neighbor complaining about an eyesore i believe.

08-27-2008, 03:34 PM
Whats the rules as to where you live? Do you live in a restricted sub division? Do you live in the city limits? Do you live out in the country? As far as the neighbor go over and tell them look its all for fun and as soon as Halloween is over it will come down. Now if you keep this shit up I will have no choice but to kill you and your family or maybe tell them you will burn their house down if they don't chill! Just a few things you could do! Shane and its don't tell me and I won't have to testify Shane this time.

08-27-2008, 03:39 PM
we live in a rural residential neighborhood, its sylvania township.
and we are in a constant fued with our neighbors. i am going to have to put an end to that.
IDK i have enough stress right now just putting this thing togethor i dont need my low life neighbors complainging just because they can.

damon carson
08-27-2008, 05:49 PM
Wow your neighbors could create a big problem for you! Dont threaten them or anything like that! LOL! Just see what the inspector has to say. Worse comes to worse you made it mobil move it to a friends house out of city limits. I dont know how many people you plan on getting ect. But that might be your last choice if all fails. Just wait it out have him talk to your parents they will more than likely listen to an adult more than someone younger. Keep us posted! There will be people on here who will try to help.

Mike Goff
08-27-2008, 07:52 PM
Been there, done that, like yours, the root of our complaint was a personal dispute. I think that the best thing that you can do is present yourself in a friendly professional manner. Be so nice (not fake nice) that the township trustees come to the conclusion that the other guy must be an A hole if he can't get along with you.
At that point turn it around on the trustees and let them know that it would be a shame if their position of authority were used as a weapon in a personal dispute. Make it obvious that if it were any other neighbor but you it would not be an issue.

Good Luck!

Kevin Dells
08-27-2008, 08:35 PM
Undertaker there are a few things you do to help your situation.

For one i would tell both partys that your putting out a donation can for a local charity or cause and do exactly that. If anything find a cause tomorrow and contact them for who and where to send the check. Your trying to find a local backer. City will like the fact your helping a local charity

I know you boys have a lot of money into this and would love to get some money back but at least this way you can still move forward this year. You didn't say if your charging or not,some home haunts of your caliber do charge a couple bucks or do have a donation can.

Worst case scenario, take it down in as big as peices you can and store it out of site until just before Halloween, Rally a crapload of freinds to put it up a couple days before. I would at least throw that at zoning before giving up.

There are a lot of haunts that do have a couple weeks to completley set up and tear down.Theater of Lost Souls in Green Bay Wisconsin does this because he's at the Fair grounds and has to wait until their season ends before they can start.

You need to start making panels if you havent already 4x8 panels, there very mobil by one guy or girl, you stand them up and storng tie them together. It takes a few hours to put up a decent sized maze with a 5-6 person team, you decorate and your done.

Build you haunt and make it mobil man.

Good luck tomorrow

08-27-2008, 10:46 PM
You could become a pro haunter..that takes care of your neighbors

08-28-2008, 03:55 PM
how did your meeting go with zoning this morning?

Please tell us good news....

08-28-2008, 04:03 PM
well it ended like this...
the building inspector is coming to check it out tommorow, he sounded very enthused about it and he wanted us to do it. So i will let you know what he said tommorow.

Can you all tell me what building inspectors look for and what i can do to prepare for it.

and they said that if they say that we need a permit we will have 30 to 60 days to get one, so technically if they wait a few days to tell us that we are going to need one we can just hurry up and have it down asap after halloween. and then they wouldnt say anything. cause once its down they wont bug us anymore.

08-28-2008, 04:19 PM
Sorry to hear about your trouble.

I would suggest first contacting a lawyer to find out exactly where you stand. You need to find out exactly what your rights are and what you are truly facing.

Second donate to charity and do your haunt in the name of a good cause. Its pretty hard for someone to look good when they are trying to shut down a charity or some one providing a large charitable contribution.

Third, stay calm and keep your cool. "Losing it" will be a nail in your coffin (no pun intended).

Most important of all though is contacting an attorney. When your car breaks down unless you know what you are doing, trying to fix it yourself won't get you anywhere and may end up leaving you in a worse position, so you call a mechanic. Dealing with a legal issue follows the same logic.

Talk to a professional, keep your cool, and give to charity. None of those things can hurt you or leave you in a worse position.


08-28-2008, 07:03 PM
Rather than a lawyer I would talk to a contractor. Lawyers don't necessarily know anything about ordinances and are extremely expensive. I wouldn't be surprised to hear him say "Nope, you can't have it. Tear it down. That will be $700."

A lawyer won't be interested in finding a way to keep your haunt up and open unless you want a long (expensive) legal battle. And you will still lose. What you have built in your photos won't hold up to any codes in the U.S. so you really don't have a leg to stand on. You will need to depend on technicalities.

You are only temporary. You aren't going to be living in it or storing anything in it. You won't be making any money off of it. Without a permit or proper building methods they might condemn it and you have 60 days to get a permit or begin demolition (pending an appeal, which sometimes costs as little as $10 and can drag it out for months). Those are your defenses, and it would take the right lawyer to recognize that point of view and build a defense on it.

It sounds like your local inspector will be someone willing to work with you. Stress the temporary, fun, non-profit aspects.

Greg Chrise
08-28-2008, 07:36 PM
The biggest concern to a building inspector or any official that will come next onto your private property is how will electric be run to this? The answer is over head so no one is walking on it at anytime or tripping. Timbers will be placed to ru the lines and what you see now if any is just for building.

As far as the eyesore part goes, simply having exposed OSB is not a good look and frankly I'm not sure how it will fair in the weather. It should have been or should be painted One nuetral color on the outside for appearance and sealing.

Even though no one touring will necessarily see the OSB, the neighbors certainly can. This may be part of the "plan" that has not been completed yet.

08-29-2008, 01:24 AM
Just remember, if the inspector seemed cool on the phone, he/she likely is... They are not there to close you down necessarily. Greg has it right about the power, Make sure you are using only ul listed fixtures etc. and proper extension cords overhead. Low voltage is a plus, as is GFI. The inspector just wants to be sure no one gets hurt. If the thing does not look like a death trap (by the pix you have posted, I'd say not) you are probably OK. It is the planners who will deal with the neighbor complaint, not the building inspector, so that is a different story.
Above all else, don't forget to breath. If there is a problem, tell them you want to do things right and say "what can I do?". Talk to the people making the decisions, and in the future, talk to them early :-D

08-29-2008, 06:30 AM
well it ended like this...
the building inspector is coming to check it out tommorow, he sounded very enthused about it and he wanted us to do it. So i will let you know what he said tommorow.

Can you all tell me what building inspectors look for and what i can do to prepare for it.

and they said that if they say that we need a permit we will have 30 to 60 days to get one, so technically if they wait a few days to tell us that we are going to need one we can just hurry up and have it down asap after halloween. and then they wouldnt say anything. cause once its down they wont bug us anymore.

If they tell you to get a permit go get a permit. They are like $50(or at least that is what i pay). Don't try and drag it out so it will be torn down before your 60 days. Start building the proper relationships with your officials now. If don't start out on the right foot now they can make it much harder on you later if you decide to keep doing this.

08-29-2008, 06:52 AM
its not that it costs a lot, but if we get a permit we will have tons of inspections that we wont pass so idk,
the building inspector is coming by sometime today, ill let you all know.

John Coen
08-29-2008, 04:22 PM
Be sure to put up a huge , gaudy Chritmas display immediately after you take it down! :)

08-29-2008, 05:12 PM
John that was funny as hell!!!! Amen Amen Brother!!! Shane and its I am LMAO Shane this time!

08-30-2008, 11:21 AM
I think you would be pleasently suprised on how the permit works. the building inspectors and or inspections are how you make them. If you follow the rules and or just build the haunt with safety in mind I am sure you will have no problems with the permit route. Also in the future if you establish relationships with the inspectors (as most are just real people doing a job) it will make your permits a breeze. Always best to work with them than try to sneak around, once you get labeled it will be allot harder to pass them inspections if you try to pull the wool over there eyes.

08-30-2008, 12:33 PM
hey just to let yall know we are trying to work with them.
The inspector was so impressed by it that he wants us to keep it up, but it would still need to be to code. So it was his idea to wait a while and then give us the 60 days notice so we are in a good relationship with him now. Plus this is our last year at my house, we will either be moving it to a building next year.

08-30-2008, 12:55 PM
I have been waiting to see how u made out.
Looks like u will be ok, just do what he suggests now.
Glad to hear its nothing really negative.
Good luck man!

08-30-2008, 02:12 PM
yeah thanks
by the way, did you still want our haunt in this months issue?

Kevin Dells
09-01-2008, 12:44 PM
If you move it to a building next year,make sure it's within this inspectors jurisdiction. He sounds cool as hell, getting it to code is not that tough.

Your going to need an exit door or two as well as fire extingushers to put near them.

And like i said get rid of the black plastic,BIG no no!

Congrads man! And look at it this way, your there now and a little bussiness smarter than you were a week or two ago. You find a building next year, you draw out a scamatic(spelling) of maze,fire escape routes and present it to him early and you are now playing the building haunt game.

I love to help the little guys, so if you ever have a question feel free to contact me for info as well as post here.

09-01-2008, 02:22 PM
Cool, now that you will be able to open be sure to put a big sign up at the exit saying " TRICK - OR - TREAT CANDY " and have arrows pointing to your neighbors house.lol.

Kevin Dells
09-01-2008, 07:57 PM
Somethingintheice mad me think us this , i saw it in a bulletin today . Might be worth a shot!

10 ways to get your neighbors to move

1)Order pizza and other food to their house and pick it up at their doorstep claiming that you don‘t have a phone.

2)Stand over the plants in your yard with a hose and Scream, "I have your life in my hands, bow down to me!". Then point at each one and declare them good or bad plants, while watering the bad ones.

3)Bring them restraining orders on inanimate objects in their house. (i.e., chairs, books, lamps, etc.

4)Ask them if you can put your trash in their cans, if they ask why say, "Mine are full of bodies", then stutter and say, "I uh mean other garbage." Walk away laughing hysterically.

5)Patrol the perimeter of your yard while carrying a broom. If they come close state that there is a 3 foot neutral area between the two yards.

6)At night transplant the plants in their garden. In the morning say, "looks like they‘re on the move again.

7)When they‘re watching TV, pull a lawn chair behind their window. Sit down with popcorn and a drink and ask them if they could open a window so you can hear too.

8)Build snowmen with name tags of your neighbors. Each day hack off a different part of their body.

9)Use your TV remote to change the channels on their TV from outside. If asked why, say you protest such programs. (The more educational the program the better.

10)Dig shallow graves at night filling your yard with brown grave patches. Make markers out of household appliances.

09-02-2008, 04:30 AM
11) building a haunted house that takes up every square inch of your yard. =)

thats some good stuff right there lol

09-03-2008, 09:09 AM
12) Put a for sale sign in your neigbors yard when they leave during the day with their phone number on it if available.