Dealing with encroachments can be tough, especially if the other party has already developed on your property. Luckily there are measures in place that can help you resolve the predicament without too many problems. In most cases, you can solve boundary and encroachment disputes without having to involve legal teams of any kind.
Here's a few common ways to deal with an encroaching neighbor quickly and easily. The biggest factor in all of this is the friendliness of your neighbor. The more amicable they are, the greater your chances are of resolving the dispute and moving forward. While that may not always be possible, it's a goal everyone should have to get along with the people who own the other side of your property line.
A Land Survey Works Wonders for Boundary Disputes
If you feel like your neighbor has or is developing on top of your land, you may want to get a professional land survey. A land survey is the first step anyone needs to take to assess the boundaries of the land they own and if there are any encroachment issues. There's never a time where a land survey won't help. Every land survey will outline in detail the boundaries between neighboring properties. What's more, the land surveyor will relay the details of the land survey to both parties clearlyt so there are no misunderstandings.
Given the land survey is accurate, both parties must find a way to handle any encroaching issues without too much tension. You must be willing to work together with your neighbor to solve the land dispute.
Talk it Over and Offer Concessions
It's not possible to resolve your boundary disputes with a simple handshake, but you can move ahead of the situation by offering concessions.
Depending on the situation and degree of encroachment, a party can offer concessions to the other. This includes moving over a fence line or repositioning a structure. Generally, both parties will do the right thing and resolve the issue without a problem. However, for disruptive neighbors that won't move their things off of your property the next item on the table is to negotiate an easement with them.
An easement basically allows one to build on top of their neighbor's property, the allotment recorded in writing. The encroaching neighbor must pay a monthly or annual fee to use the land and even pay into buying off the land. You and the other party can work out concessions you both agree about.
Bring on a Neutral Third Party
If for some reason you nor the encroaching neighbor can agree on anything fair to both parties, but don't want to bring the dispute to court, you can seek out a third party who's neutral to the whole situation. This is much more affordable than hiring an attorney, and the mediating party can help find middle ground between both sides.
In lots of cases, the degree of encroachment can be very little. Whether it be a structure or fence, usually that's not the problem. Rather it's the value of the land that is. You paid for your land after all, and its not fair for someone to steal away land you've worked so hard for.
Hopefully with a third party both you and the encroacher can find what you both want and resolve the dispute then and there. If not…
Hire a Qualified Estate Attorney
If all else fails, get help from a qualified real estate attorney. At this point, this'll be the most cost effective way to settle any dispute you may have with an encroaching neighbor. They will help you get through the process and advise you whether to take this up to court and have a judge arbitrate the situation.
At Adkan Engineers, we can do our part to help you handle an encroachment on your property. Give us a call today, and one of our certified, experienced land surveyors will come out to you and begin the land survey process. A detailed land survey is just the first step you may have to take to deal with an encroaching neighbor. Let us take that step with you.