Homeowners Allege PML Wrote that Unit Could Be Used as Office
November 2, 2007
Homeowners Stephen and Abigail Johnson own a townhouse in Redwood Shores, California, which is also managed by PML. These homeowners have filed a lawsuit against PML and their association alleging, among other things:
8. In and about March of 2007, Plaintiffs were the trustees of the Stephen and Abigail Johnson Trust and also were both professional consultants handling marketing issues through their wholly owned corporation Roeder-Johnson Corporation. Plaintiff, S. JOHNSON, was and is an avid yachtsman, pilot, photographer, and computer graphics hobbyist. Seeing that they no longer needed a commercial office in an era where the Internet has been responsible for the rapid growth of "virtual" offices operated in homes with simply a computer and network connection and needing more space to pursue their hobbies and interests, Plaintiffs decided to expand their home offices to make more space both for their personal pursuits, and to have a convenient but virtual home base for their consulting practice. Also, their commercial office space contained many pieces of expensive furniture which they wanted to keep and for which they did not want to pay storage fees. The solution, expanding their home offices into a multipurpose space, fit their needs on all accounts.
9. Being unable to remodel their existing home offices to meet their broader needs or add on to their residence, and failing to purchase an adjacent house as a means for expanding their residence across two adjoining properties, they finally ascertained that the consolidated features of a much expanded residence could be conveniently allocated across non-adjacent properties, and looked at nearby PELICAN as a possible location for a portion of their expanded residence. Since one of the uses contemplated for the expansion was a virtual office for their consulting practice, they carefully reviewed the PELICAN CC&R's and found that professional offices were specifically allowed as well as the simple remodeling envisioned to perfect the space to fit their various needs.
However, in an abundance of caution, the JOHNSONS, in writing, specifically asked PELICAN and PML to confirm that they could modify the proposed space and, even more importantly, that they could operate their professional virtual office from the condominium. The JOHNSONS made it clear that affirmative confirmation was a contingency that would have to take place in order for them to go through with the purchase. PELICAN and PML via PML confirmed in writing that the JOHNSON'S could make the small architectural additions contemplated, and that they could operate their professional business from the home.
Well, apparently everybody changed their mind and started harassing the homeowners.
Trial starts November 3, 2008. Lawsuit settled out of court.