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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 38234
Experience:  17 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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Builder constructed a new home at a higher elevation than

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Builder constructed a new home at a higher elevation than mine, and now the rain, the sprinkler and the water from the downspout from the neighbor's new home is flooding my backyard. What recourse do I have?
JA: Because real estate law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: Ohio
JA: Has any paperwork been filed?
Customer: I have called the builder, and a "work order" was placed. However, I have received no response or reaction.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: This builder has been slow to respond to issues. I tried to get a response about the grade of the neighbor's property before construction was completed, but they would not respond to me.

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed attorney and will try my best to help with your situation. There may be a slight delay in my responses as I type out an answer or reply.

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You may also be offered a phone call, but those don’t come from me and are offered by JustAnswer. If you have requested a phone call with an attorney, your request will post to other experts that do offer this service. When another attorney accepts your request you will get additional instructions.

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If the builder or neighbor won't respond to your requests, then your recourse here would be filing a civil suit against the neighbor for "private nuisance". A private nuisance is an interference with a person's enjoyment and use of his land. The law recognizes that landowners, or those in rightful possession of land, have the right to the unimpaired condition of the property and to reasonable comfort and convenience in its occupation.

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So if the neighbor's water has been diverted onto your land due to improper drainage and is damaging your property and causing you extreme inconvenience to a point where it is preventing you from enjoying the property, then it is a nuisance and the judge can issue an order for the neighbor to abate it.

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If you didn't want to jump right to litigation, you could have a local attorney send a "cease and desist" letter to them basically threatening to sue them for private nuisance for damages, injunctive action and attorney fees if they didn't abate the nuisance. Sometimes a letter from an attorney is all that is necessary to let them know you mean business.

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Does the builder, rather than the homeowner have any responsibility in this? The builder altered the land behind my lot a year after I bought my property.

From a legal perspective, when the buyer bought the house, they bought the problem as well. But they could sue the builder for any damages they have to pay you. To hold the builder liable, you would have to have sued them while they still owned the property.

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If you sued the neighbor, they would likely joint the builder as a co-defendant, and then the builder would go in and fix things rather than get dragged into court to lose and have to pay someone else to fix his problem.

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