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Tully Rinckey PLLC Partner Graig Zappia speaks with TWC News about avoiding property disputes

TWC News

Learn how to avoid property issues and disputes


Graig Zappia, Tully Rinckney PLLC Attorney said, “The bigger the property, the more likelihood of something happening; for example the one where you have the 40 acres of property. You’re not paying attention to the back half of it. Your neighbor all of a sudden starts doing things in the back yard, mowing it. They put up a fence. Or just doing normal things with the lawn can cause some kind of adverse reaction on your lawn.”

This time of year is big for property issues and disputes, especially if you’re doing some spring cleaning in the yard.

Zappia said, “Someone is cutting down trees, it’s on the property line and toeing the line a little bit and whether it’s through their own fault or through their contractors fault there’s damage to the neighboring property. Your best friend turns into a plaintiff in a law suit because the property damage becomes a nuisance for some reason.”

There are ways to avoid any litigation or disputes.

Zappia added, “If you’re building a fence, get someone who is qualified walk the property lines. Always incorporate the neighbor. Hopefully you’re on friendly terms. A lot of times, these things can be worked out ahead of time. Maybe the adjoining owner was thinking the same thing. Let’s put up a fence together, share the costs.”

If you’re thinking about buying a home, it’s easy to be distracted by the interior features like number of bedrooms or bathrooms. However, you should also pay close attention to the title.

Zappia went on to say, “If there is a property management agreement that’s been set up, hopefully it’s been recorded to put everyone on notice. If it hasn’t been recorded or there isn’t one in place, you’ll want to take care of it, but normally, if it is done properly, when you do your title search, it will come back and reference within the title report and say this property is subject to this agreement between the two neighboring properties.”

If you buy into a neighborhood that has an association, you have to abide by the rules you agreed upon when moving there. Best advice? Before you do anything, make sure you talk with your neighbors and get the agreements in writing.


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