Each of us lives in a tangled tapestry of real estate. But there is a hidden thread. It can significantly affect the value and utility of your property.
These are easements. Imagine a secret passage on a treasure map or a key that opens a mysterious door. Servitudes are an intriguing mystery in the real estate world.
In this article, we will unravel what is an easement. We want to shed light on what they are and how they can help you and your investments.
So get ready to embark on a journey of discovery. We will uncover the secrets of easements and unlock the full potential of your real estate.
What Is an Easement?
So, before entering this complex field, we suggest starting in elementary school. You need to know what an easement is.
So, it’s a legal right. It is a right that grants an individual or a legal entity limited use of a certain part of the property. But it does not transfer ownership to you. So, to put it even more simply, it is permission to use a certain part of land or real estate. At the same time, this real estate or land belongs to a completely different person.
This type of change in the real estate market can significantly affect its value and use. And it also affects the rights and responsibilities associated with owning real estate.
Such a concept as an easement is something you should study. And this knowledge will be useful to both property owners and potential buyers. Only in this way will you be able to effectively navigate real estate transactions and legal rights.
Different Types of an Easement
Easements come in many forms. And each of them serves a specific purpose. Each type carries different rights and responsibilities.
These types of easements are necessary for you to manage your land and property rights. They can significantly affect how you use and access the property.
Below, we will list some of the most common types of easements. As we mentioned, understanding these easements is essential for owners and potential buyers.
If you are unsure of your knowledge, we recommend consulting with legal counsel when dealing with easements. You can do thorough due diligence.
This way, you can ensure you fully understand their implications for your rights and responsibilities. Now, let’s break down some of the types of easements in real estate:
An acquisition easement is one of the most common types. It involves two contiguous parcels of land: dominant and servitude.
This type of easement is usually associated with certain properties. It benefits the owners of these properties.
For example, it might allow the owner of a landlocked property to access a public road by crossing an adjacent property.
Easement in Gross
A gross easement is an easement that benefits a specific individual or legal entity. But this type of easement does not benefit a specific piece of land.
Unlike a relinquishment easement, it does not depend on ownership. Utility companies often hold easements in order to access and maintain utility lines. Or use it for infrastructure on private property.
An involuntary easement is established when someone uses another person’s property. It does so for a certain period, but without the owner’s permission.
The exact requirements for establishing a prescriptive easement depend on the jurisdiction. But usually involve open and adverse use for a statutory period.
Essentially, it is a legal recognition of an established encroachment that has become a legally protected right.
People create an express easement through a written agreement. It must be an agreement between the property owner and the party who receives the property with an easement.
Lawyers on the property deeds record such agreements. You can find different types of express easements.
You won’t find an implied easement in writing. It’s more of a law under the circumstances. Typically, you will find these easements when you subdivide or sell a lot.
That said, there are certain implied rights you must retain It is how you will make the lot usable. For example, a landowner might sell a portion of his lot that does not have direct access to a road.
But it was historically accessed through the remaining lot. The new owner may have an implied easement to continue to use that path.
A conservation easement is a unique type of easement. This type is intended to preserve natural resources, scenic areas, or historic sites. A conservation organization usually holds it.
The landowner voluntarily restricts certain development rights. For example, this could be the construction of structures or mining.
It is often done in perpetuity while retaining ownership of the land. This type of easement is often used to protect environmentally sensitive areas.
Should You Buy a Property With an Easement?
So, you already know what an easement is. But sometimes, when a person hears this term for the first time, he needs help understanding whether it is worth paying attention to such real estate.
Let’s start with the fact that such a purchase can be profitable. That said, you should carefully examine the terms of a particular easement.
You need to highlight its potential impact on the property’s intended use. We suggest you recognize a few of the benefits of such a purchase:
- Access to essential services: Some easements provide access to essential services. However, it ensures that your property can access electricity, water, gas, or sewer.
- Increased property value: In some cases, easements can increase property value. For example, an easement protecting scenic views can make a property more attractive to buyers.
- Legal protection: Easements are legally binding. Therefore, it will protect your rights to use a certain area of your property.
But despite these good advantages, easements in real estate can have disadvantages:
- Restrictions on use: Easements can restrict the use of a property. For example, you may not be allowed to build structures on the property covered by the easement.
- Maintenance obligations: Depending on the easement, you may be charged with maintaining the property. It may involve additional costs and responsibilities.
In conclusion, knowing what an easement is will keep you safe. The advisability of such a purchase depends on your specific needs.
Be sure to research the terms of the easement before making any decisions. It is best to consult with expert lawyers.
Evaluate how well the easement fits your long-term goals for the property.
How to Create or Remove a Property Easement
Creating or removing a property easement is a legal process. And it usually requires the consent of all parties involved.
Below, we have provided a general overview of how to create or remove a property with an easement:
Creating a Property Easement
- Mutual consent: All parties involved must agree on the terms of the easement. In this agreement, you must specify the easement’s scope, location, and duration.
- Drafting legal documents: Consult with an attorney to draft the necessary legal documents. These may include an easement agreement or an easement deed. In these documents, you should clearly define the rights and responsibilities of each party.
- Register the easement: File the easement documents with the appropriate local government authority. This step ensures that the easement becomes part of the property’s public record.
Removal of Property Easement
- Mutual agreement: As in creating an easement, all parties involved must agree to remove the easement. If any party is unwilling, it can be challenging to proceed with removal.
- Draft the easement: Consult with an attorney to draft a document to release the easement. In this document, you must state your intent to terminate the easement. And must be signed by all parties involved.
- Record the release: File the easement release document with the county recorder’s office. This way, you can remove the easement from the property’s public record.
- Notify the appropriate parties: Inform all interested parties of the removal of the easement. You must make sure they understand the change in rights and access.
When establishing or removing property with an easement, it is critical to work with legal counsel.
This way, you can ensure compliance with local laws and protect your interests throughout the process.
In addition, some easements may have special conditions or requirements that may affect the ease of establishing or removing them.
Do easements impact property value?
Yes, easements can impact property values. It depends on their type and restrictions, potentially affecting land use and development.
How do I check if a property includes an easement?
Review the property's deed, survey, and public records to check for easements. Or you can consult a title company or attorney.
Is it legally required to disclose easements when selling a home?
Yes, disclosing easements is typically legally required when selling a home. This way, you provide transparency and avoid legal issues.
Legal procedures and voluntary agreements between parties frequently create or remove property easements.
Consult legal professionals before establishing or releasing a shared access easement to guarantee correct documentation and filing.
Easements can have a substantial impact on property use and value; therefore, they must be carefully considered.