A property line dispute can range from the minorly annoying tree branch that does not get trimmed and crosses into your yard to the extremely complex issues that were recently discussed in a case out of Florida. The case involved a property that originally consisted of a triple lot. The original owner took out mortgages from different banks. One lot consisted of the back-yard area and was essentially undeveloped except for a portion of a garage and swimming pool. The others contained the residence along with the rest of the garage and pool.
Different lots, different loans, different owners, big problem
The loans went into foreclosure. A third party purchased the backyard lot while the bank remained the owner of the other lots. The third-party owner and the bank are not in a dispute over the property line. The dispute has become so heated that the third-party owner installed a fence that literally goes through half of the garage and over the pool to separate each owner’s side of the property.
The third-party owner has voiced frustration that they cannot get a building permit because of the preexisting structures. The bank owning the other portions voiced frustration because they cannot sell the lot due to the property line dispute. Currently, the best potential resolution appears to be the sale of the sliver of land containing the garage and pool at fair market value.
Unique problem with an important lesson for property owners throughout Florida
Although this type of issue is not common, the case serves as a reminder of the importance of due diligence before purchasing property. Whether residential or commercial, an unexpected hindrance like the one outlined above can result in a huge financial loss for all parties involved. Buyers can mitigate this risk by have an attorney experienced in Florida real estate law review all documents before completing the transaction.