Property is one of the largest investments that many people in Georgia will ever make. Understandably, it can be quite upsetting to realize that another individual has erected a structure on one’s land. Owners should be sure to handle this issue as swiftly as possible as encroachment of any kind may affect a property’s: 

  • Usability 
  • Value 
  • Preservation 

How to address and encroachment 

One of the first steps is to speak directly to the neighbor or person responsible for putting up the structure. If he or she can move it, resolving it outside of court in this manner might be easiest and most cost effective for everyone involved. A property owner might even decide that he or she is willing to let the structure stay, although this is something that would need to be disclosed to future buyers. 

If the other individual is not willing to move the structure but is open to resolving the matter, the owner might consider selling that portion of the property to him or her. Unfortunately, there are situations in which the property owner and neighbor cannot come to an agreement and must instead proceed to court. While the property owner might prevail in this situation, it is also possible that the neighbor who originally encroached on the property might secure a prescriptive easement. A prescriptive easement would give him or her limited rights to use the property. 

Property owners should not delay in acting against an encroachment. Time lost in these situations may offer advantages to the individual encroaching upon one’s property. An experienced attorney who is well versed in Georgia real estate law should be able to provide further guidance to property owners in need.