Question:

I bought an apartment on paper from a contractor. Together with the apartment, I purchased a joined garage and storage room. When he did the actual building, the contractor changed the plans and connected my garage to two more storage rooms and to the building’s underground parking ventilator room. The connection was done in a way that prevents any access to the other rooms other than passing through my garage. My question is as follows: What is my status versus the owners of the other garages, and versus the va’ad ha’bayit regarding the ventilator room? Is it permissible for me to close the passageway?

Answer:

If the contractor promised you explicitly that you would receive a private garage that you would be able to close off, then you certainly have a right to close off the passageway. (If you don’t have it in writing, the other owners of the storage rooms can claim they don’t believe you.) If you were not promised privacy explicitly, it depends on the accepted custom. If it is accepted that a promised garage means that others should have no access to it – you have the right to demand just that. Additionally, if you had seen on the plans that there would be no passageway, and now the contractor changed them, you can nullify the deal, if it is accepted to cancel a sale on these grounds.

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