Real estate boundary disputes can quickly escalate into major conflicts, creating tension between neighbors and potentially leading to costly legal battles. Proactively addressing these issues and seeking resolution before they escalate is not always possible. Sometimes, litigation is the only way to resolve a contentious and consequential boundary issue.
With that said, there are times when a property owner may approach a lawyer, convinced that they have no other options than to go to court, only to discover that it is possible to settle their contentious concerns in other ways.
Addressing a contentious situation effectively
The first step in addressing any boundary dispute you may have with a neighboring property owner is to have a clear understanding of your property boundaries. Review your property deed and any relevant property maps. Sometimes, disputes arise from simple misunderstandings about where one property ends and another begins.
If there’s any doubt or confusion about property lines, it’s wise to get a professional survey completed. A licensed land surveyor can provide an accurate map of your property, clearly delineating boundaries. This objective assessment can serve as a common point of reference for discussing the dispute.
If direct communication and attorney-led communication do not resolve the issue, consider mediation. A neutral third party can facilitate a constructive dialogue and help both parties reach an amicable solution. Mediation is typically less adversarial and less expensive than litigation.
Ultimately, if the dispute cannot be resolved through communication or mediation, litigation may be necessary. It’s important to understand that there is no shame in taking a matter to court if there are no other effective pathways forward. Real property is valuable, and settling boundary disputes fairly is a worthy goal.