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Author: mawhinney Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 19483  
Subject: Property easements Date: 12/16/2002 9:47 PM
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In real estate it is my understanding that an easement grants permission to another to have some limited use of your property. For example, a utility company may be granted the right to bury their lines in your yard.

Can anyone shed some light on the property owners' responsibilities regarding an easement? A company that owns a golf course has dug a drainage ditch around the edge of the golf course. The ditch is used to catch the water runoff from the golf course and to send water to a large pond. Real estate papers show an easement was granted to the golf course company to run the ditch across and through the rear yards of private property owners. Who would be responsible for maintaining the open ditch so that the water properly flows through the ditch? The golf course company or the private property owner? It doesn't seem right that the private property owner should have to keep the ditch clear of growth, silt, and debrie solely for the convenience of the golf course. Your thoughts on the matter would be appreciated.
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Author: Trini209 Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 8228 of 19483
Subject: Re: Property easements Date: 12/18/2002 6:54 AM
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I don't think that it's the property owner's responsibility to maintain the ditch.

I believe that you cannot sell the property without informing the buyer of the easement. That's because the owner cannot build on the area - it must be kept available to the company or town or person who has the easement.

For instance, a field we own next to our house has an easement through it allowing the town (or maybe it's our county) to build a drainage ditch through the middle of it. Although my property is large enough to subdivide, the field (excluding the easement) isn't large enough to be built upon, so it's basically useless as a building lot. I can use it, if I want, for gardenning or to keep a horse or two.

Trini

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Author: drucipher Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 8241 of 19483
Subject: Re: Property easements Date: 12/23/2002 3:38 PM
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I AM NOT AN ATTORNEY, but:

Review all relevant documents to the easement. It could just be a single easement agreement. Usually, such an agreement, if done properly, specifies responsibilities of both parties. An attorney's job would have been to ensure that the agreement clearly identified which party would be responsible for this type of maintenance or if it were a shared responsibility (50/50).

If the agreement requires that the property owner maintain the land included in the easement, then you're responsible. If that's the case, then you can always approach the golf course to ammend this agreement, but it's their prerogative whether they wish to do so. If you got resistance, you could always get a petition together and present to the course to encourage them to ammend the agreement rather than to carry on with unfriendly, unpleasant neighbors.

Keep in mind, the easement covers only that certain piece of property listed in the easement agreement. So while you may be thinking in terms of "my back yard," it's important to look at the site plan in the agreement to see exactly what portion of your land is effected by the easement.

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