Home » Refurbished for 15 million – selling after a heated argument with neighbors – E24

Refurbished for 15 million – selling after a heated argument with neighbors – E24

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Refurbished for 15 million – selling after a heated argument with neighbors – E24

Former Petter Stordalen partner Magnus Rønningen (44) wants NOK 34 million for the apartment he has spent three years refurbishing. Included in the purchase is a neighbor’s dispute about the bathroom and bedroom downstairs.

Magnus Rønningen’s apartment is roughly 300 square meters in size, and is located in this listed Swiss villa at Frogner in Oslo. Photo: Photographer Ørnelund ASPublished:

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Former publishing owner and Petter Stordalen partner Magnus Rønningen (44) is selling the apartment he bought three years ago, after ending up in an irreconcilable conflict with his neighbor Rune Mørck Wergeland.

Magnus Rønningen (44) Photo: Hallgeir Vågenes / VG / NTB

In 2021, Rønningen paid NOK 23.8 million for part of the listed Swiss villa at Frognerveien 19 in Oslo, where the aforementioned Wergeland is the only neighbour. The property was this week advertised for sale with an asking price of NOK 34 million.

It was Today’s business who first mentioned that Rønningen was going to sell the home at Frogner.

Arguments about bathrooms and bedrooms

Included in the purchase is a dispute with neighbors which may lead to two bedrooms and a bathroom downstairs having to be converted into storage rooms, admittedly at Rønningen’s expense.

The background to the conflict is that Rønningen bought and later converted parts of a living space on the lower floor into a bathroom and two bedrooms.

Rune Mørck Wergeland Photo: Wergeland/Apenes

This must have been done without the board’s blessing – a board consisting of neighbor Rune Mørck Wergeland and Rønningen himself. The association’s articles of association state that work must be approved by the board before a building notice is sent to the municipality. Now neighboring Wergeland demands that the measure be reversed.

– Rønningen has settled down and taken measures downstairs that I would never have approved and will never approve. It is important that potential buyers of the home are aware that the prospectus does not show what is actually for sale. The bedroom and bathroom downstairs must be returned to living space, Wergeland states in a comment to E24.

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– You seem confident?

– Me is tilt safe. An agreement is an agreement, replies Wergeland.

He has hired top lawyer and Wiersholm partner Stig L. Bech, who for a number of years has been ranked among Norway’s best property lawyers in Norwegian and international awards.

Now you get the most important news from E24 on Whatsapp. Follow us hereThis is one of the bedrooms downstairs that Magnus Rønningen and the neighbor are arguing about. Photo: Photographer Ørnelund AS

– Tiresome neighbor

Rønningen believes that the bylaws in the condominium are out of date, and points out that the works in question were carried out in his apartment. Furthermore, he points out that all measures have been approved by both the Planning and Building Agency and the City Antiquities Office.

– Should Wergeland succeed in having a return carried out, I will then have to remove a toilet and a shower in one bathroom. The risk of this, and a tiring neighbour, is reflected in the prospectus – and specifically in that the asking price is five million below cost price, says Rønningen.

“After two years of extensive dialogue with Byantikvaren, the home has undergone extensive rehabilitation over the past year,” the property advertisement says.

Magnus Rønningen says that neighbor Wergeland showed an interest in buying the apartment when it was fully refurbished, and that a viewing was carried out. After the viewing, according to Rønningen, the neighbor must have pointed out that the measure downstairs had been carried out without approval from the board.

– After the viewing, I was contacted by Wergeland’s lawyers who pointed out that the 16 square meters I had bought from him had been sold as living space and not bedrooms. This entailed a change of use that had to be approved by the condominium, he says.

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Wergeland then demanded that we either revert bedrooms to basement storage and, curiously enough, reverse the fire protection he himself had approved in the common areas. Alternatively, he would have a compensation of NOK 3.5 million or be able to buy the apartment with a NOK 5 million discount, says Rønningen further.

The neighbor confirms to E24 that he has been in dialogue with Rønningen about a possible purchase, but does not wish to elaborate on this further.

– Feels like Welhaven

When asked why he has decided to sell the newly renovated apartment, Rønningen replies:

– We thought we were going to do a quick renovation project, which is easy to believe when you don’t have experience with the Planning and Building Agency, the City Antiquities Authority and misuse of bylaws in a condominium. The facade took just over three years of applications and revisions – crowned with the neighbour’s latest antics.

– At the same time, cold records and snowstorms came and made the wife from California dream away to a life without ice bites and cold burns on her nose, Rønningen adds.

– To what extent has the future neighborhood had an impact on sales?

I have no dire need for more Wergeland in my life, no. I feel a bit like Welhaven, really, replies Rønningen.

Neighbor Wergeland refuses any more neighborly squabbling in E24’s columns, and is content to state that the architect who once designed the Swiss villa was actually called Hjalmar Welhaven.

May become a loss-making project

Rønningen estimates that the renovation has cost him NOK 15 million. Thus, he is likely to have to sell at a loss.

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– If you buy for 24 million and renovate for 15 million, then the total cost comes to 39 million. Now the home has been put up for sale with an asking price of 34 million, so then you can do the math yourself, says Rønningen.

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