How do you report a property line encroachment?


Quick Answer

Begin the process of resolving a property line encroachment by reporting it to the neighbor responsible for the issue, recommends Nolo. Before approaching the neighbor, make sure there is an encroachment by researching property deeds and, if necessary, having a surveyor mark the property lines. If it is not possible to come to an agreement solving the issue, have your attorney send the neighbor a formal letter stating the problem. Some encroachment issues require filing a claim in civil court.

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Full Answer

Encroachments often occur due to misunderstandings, reports Nolo. There could be multiple unrecorded deeds granting a piece of property to different owners. Deed descriptions could be inaccurate, or a neighbor may have occupied a piece of property that is not actually his for several years.

Options for resolving the encroachment include the neighbor removing the encroachment or selling the encroached property to the neighbor, according to FindLaw. Before agreeing to sell the area to a neighbor, owners should contact their mortgage lender. The transaction usually requires the services of a real estate attorney.

If neighbors are unable to come to an agreement on their own, mediation is a less expensive option than going to court, according to HouseLogic. As of 2015, professional mediators charge up to $350 per hour, but if the case goes to court, the minimum cost is $3,000.

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