Define Easement – 4 Quick Tips

Picture from Wikipedia

How do you define “easement”?  An easement is the legal right of a person or company to have access of another’s real estate land for a specified purpose.

Easements can be found on the survey, the deed, or a recorded easement agreement found at the county register of deeds office.

Types of easements include:


    1. Utility  – electric, natural gas, water, sewer
    2. Access
    3. Driveway and Shared Driveway


Examples frequently seen in residential real estate are for city sewer, drainage, underground power lines, shared driveways, and access to community walking trails.

Things to remember about easements:

1) Changes to Residence:   If a homeowner builds a fence, driveway, garden, etc within the easement area, the person or company that has an easement can move or take down those items without having to put them back or pay the homeowner for the loss.

2) NC Property Disclosure:  The NC property disclosure statement asks if the homeowner is aware of any easements on the property. Homeowners may forget about easements on their property so it is best to get a new survey to be aware of easements before you buy a home.

3) Real Estate Attorney:  If a person or company wants to put an easement on your property you should consult an attorney specializing in North Carolina law before signing anything. There is no “standard easement” – each easement is specific to the property. An easement is a legal agreement and the scope of the agreement is important. In some cases the homeowner agreeing to the easement may be paid for the easement; the amount of the compensation depends on how the easement affects the usability of the property.

4) Buying Consideration:  If you are buying a property, including a home, townhome or acreage, it is important to get a new survey to find the existence and location of easements for the property you are purchasing.

How about you?  Have you ever had an experience with easements that you want to share?  Be sure to comment below.

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