When dealing with commercial real estate in California, you may encounter a legal concept known as easements. An easement is the right to use a part of another person’s property for a specific purpose.
This issue can often cause disputes or challenges, especially if not properly addressed. It becomes more important when you realize that these easements can greatly affect the usability and value of your property.
One of the most common types of easements, a right-of-way easement, allows individuals or groups to pass through your property. This type of easement usually arises when your property is in between a public road and another property, which does not have direct access to the road. It is important to clearly understand and define the limits of such an easement to avoid future conflicts.
Utility easements grant utility companies the right to use part of your property to install and maintain utility lines. This may include power lines, water pipes or even internet cables. These easements can have a significant impact on your property’s development.
Private easements grant specific individuals or entities the right to use part of your property for a specific purpose. This might include a neighbor’s driveway passing over a corner of your land or a pathway to a shared amenity, such as a lake or park.
Prescriptive easements can be a little more challenging. These easements can occur when a person uses part of your property openly, continuously and without your consent for a statutory period. You need to watch your property to prevent unintended prescriptive easements.
Understanding the different types of easements and their potential impact on your property is key in the commercial real estate world. Knowledge is power when it comes to managing and buying commercial property.