A Full-service Law Firm Dedicated To Helping Our Communities With Over 100 Years Of Combined Experience

How may I avoid boundary disputes when buying a property?

On Behalf of | Feb 11, 2022 | Real Estate

While searching for potential properties, you may review the boundary lines found by previously conducted surveys. As noted by U.S. News, lenders may ask for a recent land survey before closing the deal. A title insurance company may, however, also want a new survey to protect itself from liability over hidden issues.

Environmental problems such as flooding may have shifted the property’s size. Its current owner may not have an awareness of unusual splits or changes, especially if the seller is an investment company. To prevent legal issues, a survey may help you decide on buying one property over another.

Reviewing documents for property boundaries

If you find a property too good to pass up, you may avoid potential disputes by reviewing its existing documents. You may also use them to negotiate with a seller or potential neighbors before buying.

By visiting the local county assessor’s office or website, you may find a property’s deed and plat map. Deeds contain legal descriptions of property boundary lines and a lot’s measurements. Plat maps include neighborhood lots. You may find rectangles that depict each lot and its parcel number, which is also found on the property’s deed.

Negotiating boundary lines during a purchase

A professional surveyor may confirm a property’s existing boundary lines or inform you of undisclosed changes. If you find, for example, that a neighbor’s driveway has encroached onto the land. you may discuss a lower sale price for the area not included in the plot. If you see that you need to cross over an adjacent lot to access your property, you may create an agreement with a neighbor to do so without trespassing.

Before buying real estate, performing due diligence on boundary lines could prevent future legal problems. Property sizes and shapes may change with environmental issues or a neighbor’s encroachment.