What to Do If Your Neighbor Starts Building on Your Property

If you have noticed your neighbor constructing a shed or swing set on what you believe is your property, you will need to act quickly in order to have the situation resolved before they finish their project. It is an awkward situation when a neighbor starts trespassing on your land and it will need to be handled properly so there are no hard feelings as a result of their mistake. Here are some steps to take when you are in a predicament involving a neighbor and a building project that is ending up on your land.

Confront Your Neighbor

Go over to your neighbor's home and politely mention that you had noticed they are building something. Ask them what they are trying to make and find out if that is the permanent location where it is to be placed. Perhaps your neighbor was constructing a portion of the end project but was planning on moving it away from where they were working. They might have just been using your property to work and figured you would not be upset. Asking first will help avoid an embarrassing situation where you demand the structure is moved when it wasn't going to be placed on your property at all.

Compare Land Information

If your neighbor tells you they are placing the structure on the portion of your land, gently ask them if they have a map of their property. Tell them you will bring your own map over to compare notes. It is possible that a survey had been done incorrectly and your neighbor is building on a part of land listed on their map as being their own. If there is a discrepancy in the maps, ask your neighbor if they would mind waiting to build until after you are able to have a survey conducted.

Hire a Surveyor

Have a survey conducted to find out if your property map is correct. When you had bought your home, a survey should have been conducted, but maybe it was not done properly. If your new survey shows that you were right about boundaries, let your neighbor know and see if they would like to have their own survey done to confirm the information.

Obtain Legal Counsel

If your neighbor does not budge in stopping their project and if they do not agree to having their own property surveyed, you will need to seek the help of an attorney. Building of the structure would need to be stopped until your case is resolved. Hopefully with the above steps, however, you will not need to take this route and surveying will help both of you determine your proper boundary lines.


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