Owning commercial property can be lucrative, but it comes with its own challenges.
One of the significant hurdles a property owner might encounter is a title dispute. Understanding the various types of title disputes that can arise is important for safeguarding your investment and ensuring a smooth operation.
1. Boundary disputes
Boundary disputes are among the most prevalent challenges faced by commercial property owners. These arise when there is uncertainty or disagreement about the exact location of property lines. This can lead to conflicts with neighboring property owners over land use, access rights or even the placement of structures. Resolving boundary disputes often requires a careful examination of property deeds, surveys and historical records.
2. Easement issues
Easements grant someone the right to use another person’s land for a specific purpose, such as accessing a utility line or a shared driveway. Disputes may arise if the terms of the easement are not clearly defined or if there are changes in property ownership. Commercial property owners may find themselves entangled in conflicts over the extent of easement rights, maintenance responsibilities or modifications to existing easements.
Encroachments happen when an improvement or a structure on one property goes past its boundary and onto a neighboring property. This can happen unintentionally, such as constructing a building without accurate surveys or knowledge of property lines. Resolving encroachment issues may involve negotiations between property owners, potential adjustments to property lines, or even removal of the encroaching structure.
In conclusion, being aware of these types of title disputes is crucial for commercial property owners to navigate potential challenges successfully. In 2022, U.S. district courts saw a 3% increase in real property actions.