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Ask Barrister Your Own Question
Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 33714
Experience:  15 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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Just purchased seven acres in the san luis valley of Colorado

Customer Question

just purchased seven acres in the san luis valley of Colorado Costilla co...signed a contract with a Denver real estate agent promising us half the water and mineral rights...now find that the county has applied for and received a 31,000 grant to build a trail through adjoining properties and a parking lot on "our" property...the property is heavily wooded and consists of a series of beaver ponds, which they considered a non-issue in their application to the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Dept...we have been told by our real estate agent that they were contacted by the Dept of Fish and Game. and they are suggesting we take down our no-trespassing signs and continue to allow access for the boy scouts to come in for their annual three day event, which involves shooting over the ponds...the real estate agent has basically suggested we suck it up for two or three years and then try to sell it back to the county...what are our options?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.
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Are you concerned that the county may try to take the property through eminent domain or some other condemnation procedure?
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If not, what is your concern with the property now that you own it?
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thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Our intention was to build a small cabin on the property to allow me to heal from a chronic illness...the property was a nightmare from the beginning...almost twenty five miles from a hard surface road, we found out in the spring that everyone in the county has been using tjhis property for years as public access land(it abuts greenbelt land which we understood was recreational land for park property owners only.)We have invested heavily in getting out to the property, putting up a dome which we were told was ok because it isn't a permanent structure, and were ready to apply for a permit to build. Planning and zoning showed up after a neighbor filmed trespassers on our property who claimed they were related to the sheriff, and basically refused to leave. From what we have been told this land has been publicly accessed for years and owned by the same man for over 30 years, who allowed access. We purchased the property in March, shortly after they received the grant which we were not informed about. We are constantly chasing off fishermen, hunters, kids, people stealing firewood, etc. and have now been told by planning and zoning that we "probably will never receive permits" because we erected a dome prior to application.At this point we are no longer interested in erecting a dwelling but are concerned about liability issues and where we go from here..the real estate agent has suggested lying low for a couple years and then trying to sell it to the county for 30,000..also we are concerned about the water and land rights...our notarized ...contract says we own 50% but they say we can't dip a toe in that water...we have all e-mails stating our needs (using the creek, building, etc.)and the real estate agent has suggested a refund of funds paid so far, about half of the purchase price..i feel totally snowed by the real estate agent and the county?
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Ok, if this is your private property, then regardless of how it has been used in the past, you have the right to restrict access and prevent anyone from being on the property if you don't want to allow them there.
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So if you post the entire property with "No Trespassing, Private Property" signs, then anytime someone enters it without your permission, you or any neighbor can call the sheriff and have them arrested.
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Once you take away the free campgrounds that apparently has developed there, then that may encourage the county to approach you to purchase it if you aren't able to get permits to build. But the fact that the county has gotten a grant doesn't mean that they can bully you off your property and take it. They would still have to acquire legal ownership of it by purchasing it from you.
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thanks
Barrister

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