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Things to consider when having a boundary dispute with neighbors

When it comes to property lines in urban and even some suburban areas, most people don’t think too much about the boundaries of their properties. That’s usually because, in these areas, property lines are dictated by fences put up long ago, which are hardly ever argued when the property passes from one owner to the next.

But what about rural property owners? Often times, their boundary lines are a little less obvious and usually rely on the wording in deeds to determine where one property ends and the other begins. As some of our Michigan readers can attest, sometimes this wording is not as clear to understand as we’d like it to be, which can cause boundary disputes to crop up rather quickly.

While some people may be able to solve a dispute without the help of an attorney, in a majority of cases this isn’t always possible. This can occur because of out-dated language in a deed, such as defining a property line by a grove of trees that is no longer there, to thinking a property line was in one place when it was actually in another. As most real estate attorneys will tell you, getting your property resurveyed can often clear up any confusion, making your dispute easier to handle.

For those particularly complicated disputes, quiet title lawsuits can be a way of solving the issue. Though regarded as expensive because of legal fees, quiet title lawsuits put the determination of a dispute in the hands of a judge. This often negates drawn out arguments between neighbors and leads to a more concise decision in the end.

Whether you choose to solve the dispute on your own or with the help of a skilled attorney, it’s important to remember that real estate law can be complex. And with complicated deeds and building tensions, these complexities can lead to unnecessary frustrations, especially without the help of an attorney. It’s definitely worth considering if you find yourself in a real estate dispute your own down the road.

Source:, "Boundary Disputes"

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