In the simplest of terms, a property dispute is defined as a legal dispute that involves real estate. Simple, right? Not entirely.
Property disputes can cover a variety of possible conflicts involved over a wide range of property types from vacant lots and driveways to homes, condos, water features, and all other possible elements of real estate property.
For these reasons and more, having a qualified legal team in your corner can help guide you through your options in settling disputes either in court or before differences have to even go to court. The law firm of Heban, Murphree & Lewandowski, LLC, offers decades of experience in helping the people of Finlay, OH, settle all manner of legal issues and have extensive knowledge in the area of property disputes and the best ways to resolve matters to your satisfaction.
Disputes can be large or small, and could even affect a property’s marketability. An example of this might be the builder who constructs a new home and, when pouring the concrete for the driveway, accidentally goes over onto the neighbor’s property by six inches. It might seem like a small problem, but it has the potential to become a bigger one if not addressed promptly.
Types of Property Disputes
Property disputes will always involve the property owner, but they can also include neighbors, trespassers, property visitors, tenants, and even government agencies. Some of the most common types of property dispute cases are:
- Property line disputes – If issues arise regarding the determination of where a property line sits and how it affects construction or other usages.
- Tree damage disputes – If you are seeking damages when someone’s tree damages your house or other property.
- Fence disputes – If you are dealing with a “spite fence” or a new fence which blocks views or fails to follow property lines.
- New construction repairs – If a new construction requires repairs or runs into other property issues (such as crossing a property line), the homeowner and developer may disagree on who is responsible.
- Zoning disputes – If you believe your property is not zoned correctly for how it is being used or wish to appeal zoning decisions.
- Property tax disputes – If you feel your property tax bill does not fairly reflect the value of your home, and traditional appeal options do not work.
- Mortgage disputes – If a property has more than one mortgage lender, and there needs to be clarification on who can foreclose on it or who receives the proceeds from the foreclosure sale.
Handling a Property Dispute
What should you do if you have a property dispute? Follow these steps to come to a conclusion:
Seek Sound Legal Advice
A qualified legal team will help you understand your rights and how Ohio’s laws apply. They can also assist in determining where the property line sits so you can make fair and legal requests of the other party.
Property disputes can create a lot of tension between you and the other party. Try to keep a cool head and avoid letting frustration or hard feelings get in the way of a peaceful resolution.
Hire a Surveyor
A surveyor is the best person to give you accurate information about where your property line is. This also gives you documentation to use in your claim should you need to file an actual suit.
Speak With the Other Party
If the dispute is with a neighbor, try talking it out. See if you can agree without the expense and hassle of filing a claim. Try to keep the conversation friendly. You’ll know soon enough if there are going to be problems. Should the conversation go south, consider hiring a neutral third party to help you resolve the issue.
Send a Letter
If the previous steps fail to settle your dispute, then it’s time to have your attorney send an official notice of intent to pursue legal action. Your attorney’s letter will allow the other party one more opportunity to settle the dispute without having to go to court.
Take It To Court
If your case has merit, and the other party is not willing to work with you, then it’s time to consider a lawsuit. Ideally, this should be a last resort. If you need to go that route, an experienced property dispute lawyer who understands Ohio laws and your local municipality’s laws will be by your side from beginning to end.
If you feel you need to file a lawsuit, we are ready to help. We can guide you through the entire process with our experienced property dispute and property tax dispute attorneys. Just give us a call, or fill out our form for a free consultation!