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Do you have to honor an existing easement?

On Behalf of | Jan 11, 2024 | Real Estate Law |

When you’re purchasing a property, it’s important to learn as much as possible about the details of that property and what obligations you will have. For example, the property may have an easement, meaning that someone else is allowed to use that property in certain ways. An example of this is a shared driveway if only one property borders the nearest road.

If you are buying a property that has an easement, you may want to cancel it once you become the new owner. You never agreed to it, after all. Do you have to continue honoring it after making the purchase?

What type of easement is it?

It all depends on the type of easement. In some cases, it will be an easement appurtenant – or an easement that “runs with the land.” These are essentially considered part of the property. You do have to honor them. When you purchase that property, you are agreeing to take on the easement as a part of it, and you cannot cancel that obligation without violating the other person’s rights.

But there are other personal easements that are just agreements between two property owners. These are not considered part of the land, and they are much more temporary in nature. If this is the type of easement that has been put in place on your new property, you can approach the other property owner about canceling it without serious legal ramifications.

Either way, you can see how important it is to consider these types of details when determining what property to purchase or when doing a property valuation. Take the time to consider all of your legal options as you move through this process.