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Old 08-18-2017, 06:00 AM
 
3,071 posts, read 1,629,027 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmking View Post
I've seen the maps. I've lost no amount of land, in that they shifted my property line way close to my house, between the two houses, the balance falling into common ground that are drain swells on the opposite side of the yard. I'm on a corner lot, swells run along the front, side and back of the property, nothing in between the houses except an electrical and cable box in the front between the houses.

The new boundary between the houses is not straight like it used to but on an angle, clipping the rear of my driveway and across my leach field in the back. The surveyors measured for me the length along the back yard in which it ended in a swell, common ground, in which they stated that it looked incorrect.
How many sides does this corner lot have?

How can there be 'swells' (swales?) on three sides of a corner lot? Doesn't a corner lot have only two sides not adjacent to a road?

How can the lot lines of a corner lot be shifted without your lot protruding into the street?

None of these make sense.

In addition, swales are normally easements running through a property, so they would be part of your's or the neighbor's 1/2 acre lot, to mow and maintain as your own, not a separate un-deeded area. Did you just assume that your property started PAST the swale area when you put your leach field in?
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Old 08-18-2017, 08:00 AM
 
6,209 posts, read 6,587,482 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rugrats2001 View Post
How many sides does this corner lot have?

How can there be 'swells' (swales?) on three sides of a corner lot? Doesn't a corner lot have only two sides not adjacent to a road?

How can the lot lines of a corner lot be shifted without your lot protruding into the street?

None of these make sense.

In addition, swales are normally easements running through a property, so they would be part of your's or the neighbor's 1/2 acre lot, to mow and maintain as your own, not a separate un-deeded area. Did you just assume that your property started PAST the swale area when you put your leach field in?
First off it was a new house, a spec house when I bought it over 2 years ago. This neighborhood is only one long street that will eventually contain around 28 homes with dry ponds at both ends of the street. I'm a corner lot, it's an entrance road on the right side of my house that intersects my street in front. Swales run in front of every home and the back of every home (all homes backup to dense woods). A fairly large concrete drain (3'x3' aprox.) runs underneath the road connecting both back yard swales on my side of the street and or to the one other corner lot on the opposite side of the road. A swale on the right side of my house runs into the concrete drain in my back yard swale forcing water to the dry ponds. These swales are mandated by the county for this property. Southern Delaware is one of the flattest lands on the east cost. Also, my house is coastal property, a few miles from the Atlantic and major inlets. If one was to look at my property and or measure it, it would measure at least 3/4 of an acre. All swales is common land, except for the swales in the back yards, not the front of the houses and not corner lots like mine on the right side of the house. However, we are required to maintain the common land, HOA handles the dry ponds etc.

So, to answer your question pertaining to the bold text in your quote, This new survey shifted my lines over into common ground on the right side of my house into the swale and part of a group of rocks positioned to help filter runoff from the concrete drain. I have my property plans from closing on this house and indicates my half acre, a diagram of my house's position within this half acre, indicating both feet, inches and what appears to be GPS readings, about 25' of common ground containing the swales and drain, and then the street along side my house. The law firm that closed on my home is researching the issue. The builder of these homes had a survey done to this new house when it was completed 2 months ago. The boundary did not change from when I bought my home. Only when the new owner hired their own surveyors, who by the way did not like the results and who told me they where working with very old plans, what ever that means, we now have issues. I believe this area has been surveyed many times it seems. It could be that the plans these surveyors used date back decades.
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Old 08-18-2017, 11:35 AM
 
Location: Wasilla, AK
5,892 posts, read 3,164,394 times
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When you bought your house did you get an as built survey showing the size, dimensions and legal description of your lot? Somewhere in all that paperwork you signed two years ago is a legal description of your property. Does it match the county plat for your location? That's where I would start. Your title company should have ensured everything matched up. If they didn't, it's on them Forget the lawyers for now. That's just bogus advice thrown out there every time someone has an issue. Match up your legal description to the county plat and go from there.
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Old 08-18-2017, 12:28 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
26,878 posts, read 57,960,239 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlaskaErik View Post
Your title company (closing attorney in the east) should have ensured everything matched up.

Somewhere in all that paperwork you signed two years ago is a legal description of your property.
Does it match the county plat for your location? That's where I would start.
And where your attorney who handled the contracts and closings w/should have covered.

These documents should include a survey (image) with all those details.
At the corners will/should be references to "EIP" (iron pins). LINK to example.

Since it's now Friday afternoon and the closing happened and you can't do much else before Monday
whether you're attorney is involved or not... borrow someones metal detector and locate these pins.
Compare those spots to where the builders stakes are.

Quote:
Forget the lawyers for now.
That's just bogus advice thrown out there every time someone has an issue.
Out west this sentiment might even have some merit... except when there's a real problem.
Out there you'll hear 'it's lawyer time" plenty too.
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Old 08-18-2017, 12:53 PM
 
Location: Cary, NC
31,637 posts, read 55,374,605 times
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https://www.cga.ct.gov/2009/rpt/2009-R-0448.htm

DELAWARE

In 2000, the Delaware Supreme Court approved a decision by the state's Board on the Unauthorized Practice of Law that a real estate settlement company and three people associated with the company were engaged in the unauthorized practice of law by conducting real estate settlements in Delaware without the assistance of an attorney (In re Mid-Atlantic Settlement Servs., 755 A.2d 389, 2000 Del. LEXIS 243 (Del. 2000)). The board noted that “no attorney is present during these settlements, and in most instances no Delaware attorney is involved in the loan and settlement process . . . In addition, no Delaware attorney reviews the documents used at the settlement” (Mid-Atlantic, 2000 Del. LEXIS 243, at *3-4).

The board found that the company engaged in the practice of law when (1) determining the proper legal description of the property as set forth on the deed to be included on an exhibit on the mortgage and (2) explaining to the borrower the terms of many legal documents, including the note, mortgage, Planned Unit Development Rider, the Truth-in-Lending Disclosure, and the first payment letter.

The court approved the board's recommendation that required an attorney licensed in Delaware to conduct a closing of a sale of Delaware real property or a refinancing loan secured by Delaware real property
.

And, the OP mentioned Delaware.
Title work is attorney work.
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Old 08-18-2017, 04:58 PM
 
628 posts, read 445,835 times
Reputation: 1146
This sounds like a problem with easements for swales. You say that the swales on the front/side are "common." So either they are platted and deeded separately and owned by the HOA by deed OR they are recorded as easements across property YOU actually own. Most of the time this would be by easement. I would imagine that one surveyor or another (hard to tell if it is yours or theirs) is following the legal description and starting at the inside edge of the swale and one is starting at the edge of the street. If the surveyor is starting at the edge of the swale and measuring for 150' depth (let's say) he is going to end up in a different place than someone measuring from the edge of the street that borders the swale. So if your lines have jumped about the width of a swale I would guess it is something like this.

Whomever platted the subdivision wins and since that is your developer I would imagine his own stakes are right.
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Old 08-18-2017, 07:08 PM
 
Location: MID ATLANTIC
7,602 posts, read 17,643,477 times
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Why would anyone advise against an attorney? That makes no sense for something this serious. The only question I have is if the original attorney screwed up, is the attorney going to, or better yet, how is he going to fess up?
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Old 08-18-2017, 10:47 PM
 
Location: Wasilla, AK
5,892 posts, read 3,164,394 times
Reputation: 11919
Quote:
Originally Posted by SmartMoney View Post
Why would anyone advise against an attorney? That makes no sense for something this serious. The only question I have is if the original attorney screwed up, is the attorney going to, or better yet, how is he going to fess up?
When I bought my first home I found the neighbor's fence encroached on my property. Instead of hiring a lawyer I went next door and explained the situation and requested the fence be moved off of my property. A few days later the fence was moved. End of problem. Lawyers should be the last resort. Too many people here urge lawyering up as a first resort.
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Old 08-19-2017, 04:07 AM
 
Location: Cary, NC
31,637 posts, read 55,374,605 times
Reputation: 30188
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlaskaErik View Post
When I bought my first home I found the neighbor's fence encroached on my property. Instead of hiring a lawyer I went next door and explained the situation and requested the fence be moved off of my property. A few days later the fence was moved. End of problem. Lawyers should be the last resort. Too many people here urge lawyering up as a first resort.
"Septic system is clipped."

So, the OP should go next door and ask the new neighbor to move their septic system?
Meh.
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Old 08-19-2017, 03:35 PM
 
8,388 posts, read 7,382,268 times
Reputation: 18257
Quote:
Originally Posted by SalamanderSmile View Post
This sounds like a problem with easements for swales. You say that the swales on the front/side are "common." So either they are platted and deeded separately and owned by the HOA by deed OR they are recorded as easements across property YOU actually own. Most of the time this would be by easement. I would imagine that one surveyor or another (hard to tell if it is yours or theirs) is following the legal description and starting at the inside edge of the swale and one is starting at the edge of the street. If the surveyor is starting at the edge of the swale and measuring for 150' depth (let's say) he is going to end up in a different place than someone measuring from the edge of the street that borders the swale. So if your lines have jumped about the width of a swale I would guess it is something like this.

Whomever platted the subdivision wins and since that is your developer I would imagine his own stakes are right.
If it was a proper survey, the surveyor would not have measured starting at a swale, or the edge of the street. They would be following the legal description, and would be starting at the stated permanent and registered marker which may even be a distance from the property. I have seen instances where this marker was over a mile and often more from the property itself. In every legal description, or a subdivision plat, there is always a beginning point which will be a permanent and registered marker. On the other hand if it was just someone measuring using the street or swale or other part of the property as a start point, there is no way that is a survey and those markers put in have nothing to do with the property lines.

One of the worst examples I have ever seen, where people just measured as the poster suggested, was in a mountain community in Colorado. It was along a 2 lane state highway, and had at one time been a church camp that someone broke up into lots many years before. A man and his wife bought a lot for cash (no survey), and never took out a loan till after the home was half built. The lender required a survey.

The survey found the person did not own the lot they were building on, but owned the house next door. The lender had several loans in the area that was made before they required surveys. They quickly found that no one owned the lots they had built on. The one that owned the house next door where this man owned, was actually on an the other side of the highway, on a cliff like hill.

They were told by attorneys that they all needed to do a quiet title suit to get things straightened out, costing thousands of dollars each property and taking a year or more to do.

The man who was building the home came to me on a recommendation for a consultation to find if there was any other way of doing it. I consulted 40 years ago for $100 an hour. I had an idea, and called my real estate attorney friend to see if it was doable. He said go with it. Each person marked his corners of what he thought he owned, and the neighbors agreed with him. There were over 100 lots. When all agreed, the surveyor did the surveys, wrote the new legal descriptions based on the survey. The owners deeded their lots to the attorney, and he deeded the lot with the new legal description to the owners. The cost due to the number of properties, was $100 for the surveyor, and $100 to the attorney including the filing fees for each lot. Took less than 30 days to accomplish it all.

The county recorders office was happy with the results, as it cleared over 100 titles and were all correct. The lenders were happy, as they now had mortgages on property they had loaned on. The owners were happy, as it solved their title and mortgage problems, and only cost $200 to handle it which was way less than just a survey on their property. The surveyor was happy, as he got a nice helping of business. The attorney was happy (my attorney who was the best real estate attorney in town) as his para-legal did the work, he checked the work and got a few thousand dollar profit. I got a couple of hundred dollars for the consultation that came up with the idea of how to solve the problem. Not a big payday, but enough to take my wife out for a couple of date night dinners after income taxes deducted.

I saw lots of examples, where people just measured, from something like a swale or street and were wrong. Some were huge mistakes like that community mentioned above. When buying property, don't settle for less than a new surveyor by a licensed surveyor.
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