The 5 Most Common Title Issues for Rural Real Estate
Buying rural property is not like buying a house in town. Buying land for ranching, farming, or recreational purposes often involves expansive boundaries and lingering judgments that are not always clear during negotiations, or even at the time of purchase. The most common issues when buying rural property around Ogden or Layton, UT are title disputes over your property.
To avoid title issues over rural property, reach out to Froerer & Miles. Our legal team can help perform a complete title check for a free-and-clear property purchase, to avoid troubled properties, or clear up issues concerning your current property details. Let’s discuss property issues in more detail.
Title Issues in Rural Utah
Your title is the official filed deed information for your property. It not only defines who owns the property, it also contains very specific details about the property location, boundaries, structures, condition, and any legal concerns attached to the property as well. Many rural properties have more than one title consideration, like an easement to a public road or designation for what the property is used for.
Below are the five most common title concerns for rural residents.
1) Boundary Disputes
Boundary issues are the most common title-related issue for rural property. Boundary issues occur when two property owners have land that shares a border, but the landmarks have changed over time so that border is no longer clear. Sometimes the property border was never clearly marked in the first place. The issue occurs when one owner makes use of that land, and may or may not guess correctly where the border lies.
New buyers often want to confirm their boundaries, and may need to dispute with a neighbor if their title defines land that has been fenced or otherwise used inside their property bounds. Existing property owners may also find themselves in a dispute over where a boundary lies and what can be done with that land.
2) Easements that Pass From Owner to Owner
If you are buying rural property, you may not be aware that your title contains an easement. Easements are temporary (or not so temporary) access through part of your land for a defined purpose. For example, your property may be between the public road and a public beach. Or some of your land may contain an easement for power lines, or so a neighbor can access a piece of their land.
The trouble with easements is that they can stop with one owner or pass on to the next owner without their knowledge. Always have a title check done on rural property in case there are lingering easements.
3) Undisclosed Property Owners
Did you know that past owners might still be listed on your title, even after the property changes hands? Even deceased passed owners may still be on the title, opening the door for legal complications and challenges by surviving relatives for rightful ownership. With title services, you can ensure only the current property owners are listed, and have any legacy names removed from the title if they are no longer legal owners of the property.
4) Liens and Pending Lawsuits
A lien is placed on property when the land is used as collateral for a debt, even after the property is sold. No buyer wants to purchase property that comes with creditors waiting to take parcels for debt they personally did not incur. Likewise, if a lawsuit was filed against the property for injury liability or other purposes, that lawsuit might follow the property, not the previous owner.
Title services before purchase can help ensure that there are no liens or pending lawsuits when buying land.
5) Outstanding Property Debts
Last but not least, property tax always follows the property instead of the owner. Even mortgage payments can transfer depending on the nature and process of the sale. With the right legal team on your side, you can ensure that rural property you purchase does not come with outstanding debt.
Contact a Title Review Lawyer
If you’re planning to buy or renovate rural property, you may want to consult with a lawyer about the title. Contact our law office online for a consultation. You can also reach our Ogden law firm by phone at (801) 621-2690.