When you want to purchase a piece of real estate, especially if you want to purchase unimproved land in order to build your dream home, securing an easement may become part of the purchase process. An easement is the legal right to access or use someone else’s land.

It is common for utility companies to have easements on properties that abut facilities such as power lines. It is also common for neighbors to have easements on one another’s properties for things like driveways and access to the property.

Securing an easement as part of a real estate purchase can be the difference between a property that is habitable and comfortable and a property where you cannot feasibly build a house and live.

The right terms in an easement can protect your investment

Securing an easement to use or construct a driveway to access a parcel of land set back from the road with no road front footage is often necessary for an owner to access or utilize the property. Obtaining an easement that allows you to install utilities or access your property is also of the utmost importance.

However, making sure the terms of the easement adequately protect you is also crucial. Some kinds of easements do not transfer after the sale of real estate. You need to ensure that your easement will persist whether the other property owner sells their property or you intend to sell yours. Otherwise, you or other future owners of the property may lose access, which would substantially decrease the value of the property.

Negotiating an easement before you complete a purchase or invest in improvements on a property is often an important part of a pending real estate transaction. An experienced attorney can help you with this.