For property owners, purchasing a home, building or piece of land is one of the biggest investments they will ever make. Unfortunately, things are not always smooth sailing afterward. Property owners in Georgia often have to deal with complex issues before, during and after the purchase process, including problems such as encroachment.

What is encroachment?

Encroachment is when a structure intrudes on or over at least part of another person’s land. For example, if a neighbor builds a shed that crosses into his or her neighbor’s property, it is considered encroachment. Encroachment might also occur after a home expansion, resulting in a patio or deck falling across property lines. There are generally three options for addressing encroachment, which include:

  • Agreeing to allow the encroachment
  • Selling the part of the land where the encroachment is
  • Going to court

Since the first step should be to address the problem with one’s neighbor, some property owners might decide to allow the encroachment if they are on good terms. However, this can lead to issues in the future should the property owner decide to sell, as he or she will need to disclose the problem. This is why some opt to sell off the portion of land. If neither of these solutions are appropriate, then it might be best to proceed to court.

Navigating Georgia real estate law can be a complicated journey. Dealing with encroachment problems are no exception, especially when neighbors are unable to see eye to eye on the matter. This is why many property owners find it helpful to speak with a knowledgeable attorney about their options for addressing difficult real estate matters.