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What Is An Easement In Real Estate?

What Is An Easement In Real Estate?

An easement is considered as a property right in itself at common law and is still treated as a type of property in most jurisdictions.

An easement in real estate is a limited right to use, crossover and/or enter/exit the property in a certain way without possessing it. It’s not a full right of ownership. It’s “A right to cross or otherwise use someone else’s land for a specified purpose”. Easements can be helpful in providing pathways across two or more pieces of property, allowing individuals to access other properties or a resource.

Examples of easement: To run cattle by a private property, to go fishing in a privately owned pond, to build a railroad or to have access to a public beach. To have the municipality may need to run water pipes access under your land, you’ll own the deed and the title of the property, but an easement should be mentioned in the title recorded by the county.

Types of easements: The rights of an easement holder can vary depending on the jurisdiction. The common law courts recognize the following types of easements that need to be understood:

  1. Right of Way Easements: These allow a person to cross over or use another person’s land to access their own property or a public area. For example, a right of way easement may allow a neighbor to cross over another neighbor’s property to reach a public road.
  2. Easements of Necessity: These are created when a landlocked property has no access to a public road or highway, and an easement is granted to allow access to the property.
  3. Easements by Prescription: These are created when a person has used another person’s property openly and continuously for a certain period of time without permission, and the use has become an established right.
  4. Easements for Utilities: These allow utility companies to access and maintain their equipment or utility lines that run through someone else’s property, such as electrical or gas lines.
  5. Easements for View: These are designed to protect a property owner’s view of a particular feature or landscape. They may prevent another property owner from building structures or trees that obstruct the view.
  6. Easements for Conservation: These allow a conservation organization or government entity to protect natural resources or habitats on someone else’s property. They may limit or prohibit certain activities, such as development or hunting.

Easements are mostly created in binding documents. Parties generally grant an easement to another, or reserve an easement for themselves. Courts have also recognized creation of easements in other ways. If you are buying a property, most likely you’ll find if there’s an easement described in the property deed