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I bought my home last December. It was new construction. I

found out in May that...
I bought my home last December. It was new construction. I found out in May that I have an easement going through the middle of my backyard allowing my neighbors lawn to drain excess water through mine and is supposed to go into the stream in the back. My question is this. It was never mentioned in the "full disclosure" or anywhere in the contracts. Does this lower the value of my home when I go to sell it and what recourse do I have?
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Answered in 10 minutes by:
10/11/2013
Roger
Roger, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 31,877
Experience: BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
Verified

Roger :

Hi - my name is XXXXX XXXXX I'm a litigation attorney.

Customer:

Hi Roger

Customer:

Where can I find my ansewr

Customer:

I cannot find my answer

Customer:

Is anyone ther

Roger : Sorry - there was a glitch in the chat function. Maybe it's fixed.
Roger : One question - is the easement recorded?
Customer:

When I went to town hall to get a permit to get the fence, that is when I found out about the easement. No one ever told me about it

Roger : If the easement is recorded or in the public records/land records, it doesn't have to be specifically told to you because it's been published.
Customer:

Shouldn't that be mentioned in full disclosure

Roger : Disclosures generally only require things that you can't find out on your own or through your own research.
Customer:

So I do not need to mention it when I sell the house.

Customer:

Even though it floods when it rains

Roger : You wouldn't have to if it is public record.
Customer:

ok thanks

Customer:

What about the flooding

Roger : When you sell the house, your deed would say that the sale is subject to any recorded easements, and it's up to the buyer to check to see what those are.
Roger : If it wasn't recorded, there should be a duty.
Customer:

gotcha thanks

Customer:

Should my title company have found this

Roger : Yes.
Customer:

Can I hold them responsible

Customer:

They said nothing

Customer:

and what can I do

Roger : Your title company should have had an attorney perform a title search, and that search should have indicated any easements, etc. If it didn't you may have a claim against it.
Customer:

I can send you an email as to their reply when I questioned them

Roger : You may have a claim that the failure for it to disclose this to you was a misrepresentation, and that the easement makes your property worth less (an appraiser would have to tell you that is the case), and you could try to sue for the difference in value.
Customer:

Are we done here

Roger : Also, if it is flooding your property, you could file a action against the neighbor for a private nuisance and ask the court to require work to be performed on the area to prevent this, etc.
Roger : The best thing you could do is have an attorney look into the documentation provided, and help you determine who to sue and for what.
Roger : However, if your title company failed to disclose the existence of the easement to you, then there's likely a cause of action there.
Customer:

They never told me. And I don't want to sue my neighbor, he is a nice guy and was also unaware

Roger : I understand that.
Customer:

Is there anything else I should know. Do you know a good lawyer in my area, Macungie PA

Customer:

I can't afford alot of money right now

Roger : You can discuss with a local attorney the prospects of suing the title co. and possibly the seller (but that's likely a long shot as you'd have to prove that there was no way you could have discovered the easement yourself - - which is where the title co. would come in).
Roger : As for an attorney, we're not allowed to make direct referrals, BUT I can direct you to www.martindale.com and search for an attorney in your area.
Customer:

any idea what it would cost me

Roger : Unfortunately, no - - not specifically. It would just depend on what an attorney asked of you and then how much of a fight the other party wants to put up.
Customer:

ok thanks anything else I should know

Roger : Not that I can think of at the moment......the best thing is to consult a local attorney so you can decide whether or not you want to pursue this further.
Customer:

thanks, XXXXX XXXXX give you an excellent rating

Roger : Great! Thank you very much for allowing me to assist, and if you need anything further, please let me know.
Customer:

will do thank

Roger : Sure.
Roger
Roger, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 31,877
Experience: BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
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Roger, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 31,877
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Experience: BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters

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The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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