A boundary dispute can take many forms and if left unresolved can quickly escalate and can cause problems in the future should you ever wish to sell your property. Typically, a boundary dispute will arise if there is a misunderstanding over where the boundary is located. This is usually when a wall, driveway or fence is moved or replaced.
In the case of a boundary dispute Jarmans would always recommend obtaining legal advice as you could possibly find yourself in Court. Becoming embroiled in a boundary dispute without legal advice can sometimes lead to situations where the costs of a Court case are more than the land in dispute is worth. Added to that there is the potential of unwanted acrimony between neighbours and ultimately this may require compromise on both sides.
How to resolve a boundary dispute
It’s important to remember that the longer a dispute goes on, the more acrimonious it will become. The preferred end result is that all neighbours are happy and can continue living in their properties, so Jarmans would always recommend calm and amicable communication from the outset. Mediation needs to be considered at the outset.
The first point of action will be to look at Land Registry plans, however it is worth remembering they may lack sufficient detail given the scale used. The pre-registration deeds covering the properties involved in the dispute should be investigated wherever possible. Old photographs, physical evidence and expert evidence should all be considered.
What if I’m buying a house and there’s a boundary dispute?
When you go and view your new home it’s worth checking to see if there are any overhanging buildings/structures, or if the fence is in an unusual position. You should also check with your solicitor to see what is and isn’t included in the deeds.
How much could a boundary dispute cost me?
If your dispute finds its way to Court or the First Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber), it could be extremely expensive for both sides, which may make your relationship with your neighbours untenable.
Jarmans Solicitors will always attempt to resolve your dispute through a sensible and pragmatic manner.