Before placing an offer to buy property, conducting a title search may uncover an easement a prior owner granted and the existing owner may not know about. According to Bankrate.com, a mortgage lender may deny a loan after discovering an unrecorded easement.
An easement grants a business or individual permission to access a portion of an owner’s property. It typically only allows limited access, such as when an individual must drive over a neighbor’s land to reach his or her own property.
Purchasing property with an unrecorded easement
Property owners may give their neighbors verbal permission to access land and then fail to record their easements. A homeowner, for example, might allow a business owner’s customers to park their cars temporarily on his or her property during normal business hours.
In some cases, two individuals may have created a verbal agreement regarding an easement, but without legally recording it on a deed. An uncomfortable situation may develop after a new homeowner moves in and finds cars parked on his or her property. Without a recorded easement, the neighboring business owner might decide to file a legal action against the new property owner to uphold the prior verbal agreement.
Discovering a property has a cell tower
Some properties may contain a wireless cell tower, such as one might find on acreage near a major freeway. As noted by REALTOR Magazine, a cell tower reflects a separate lease that investors buy and sell. Purchasing land with a tower may require investigating whether an easement exists that grants permission to certain associated parties to access the structure.
Property that comes with an easement may require careful review and negotiation before completing a transaction. If a new property owner must grant access, recording an easement may help prevent future legal issues.