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Encumbrances

An Overview on Encumbrances

An Overview on Encumbrances

Background
An encumbrance is a debt, claim, or lien left on a property that is attached, and can affect it’s value, transfer, and title. There are different types of encumbrances, such as, taxes, mortgages, liens, environmental, etc.. Some encumbrances deal with monetary holds, such as liens and mortgages. Others can deal with other things such as zoning laws, encroachment, and certain restrictions. 
Liens are a form of collateral that is held on a property for a debt owned. Encroachments refer to a structure of a property whether it be a building, home, fence, etc.. that is crossing over the property lines onto another private property. Encumbrances must be made clear to any potential buyers of a property prior to the purchase, and must be fully disclosed. A list of encumbrances will be given to the prospective owner regardless of its influence of the value or sale of the property, and none can be withheld. 

Private Encumbrances
A private encumbrance differs from public ones, in that it deals with the claims on a property through a private entity such as a business, or individual. They do not deal with any government organization or agencies and their claims. Some common examples of private encumbrances are,  judgment liens, mechanic’s liens, and easements.  Judgment liens deal with an unpaid damage from a lawsuit that the land owner faced at a given point.  
A mechanic’s lien has to do with a debt owed to a person or company ( such as a contractor) for a service on the property.  This debt can also include the cost of materials for the job or service performed. Easements placed on a property give the right to use a part of that property to another person or company. They can be for the use of utility companies for service purposes, or benefit a private owner to acquiring full use and enjoyment over their property.
Zoning
The purpose of zoning laws is to regulate how a property or land will be used, that is beneficial to the community or general public. These laws categorize a land under its use and then have sub regulations in each of those categories to further regulate a property. These categories are the following: residential, recreational, industrial, commercial, and agricultural.  The limits these laws place on a property can deal with the structures on that property. 
For instance, they can regulate the size of a home both height and width as well as whether it is a single or multiple family dwelling. For commercial property they can regulate the size of hallways within buildings as well as emergency exits, and the capacity of a building. Zoning laws basically protect the public from a property abuse by any type of property that will be a nuisance or invade another property in any way.

Building Codes
Buildings codes are set to enforce the safety and proper function of operations within a building structure. Usually seen in commercial buildings, these codes enforce everything from fire safety to workplace safety. Building codes for fire safety are usually set by the local fire department’s fire marshal. These codes can regulate the maximum number of people that can be inside an establishment at the same time, as well as the number of fire exits that the building contains. 
They also regulate how many fire safety devices must be installed in the building (fire extinguishers/hoses, smoke detectors, fire alarms, etc..), and at what frequency or abundance. Building codes can also relate to the requirements a structure must meet in natural disaster prone areas. These can be countermeasures for hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, and others. These codes also deal with other aspects, but generally they are set to maintain an overall safety within and outside of a structure. 
Environmental Protection
Environmental protection laws are set to protect the environments from any damage or misuse by people near or around them. These laws can refer to where a property is built and restricted from being built such as reservation areas. They list guidelines that developers must follow when constructing new structures near these protected areas, as well as certain areas crucial to the environment that are not protected. 
The environmental protection laws also deal with the types of materials that are used in any type of construction, industrial machinery, etc.. and regulations of their use. For companies creating certain hazardous material, there are requirements for the creation, use, and discarding of such products in relation to environmental laws as well. These laws are set to prevent any damage to an essential part of human life, most clearly seen in laws protecting our clean water systems and banning the dumping into them. 
Easements
Easements are the use of a piece of a private property by another person or group for a specific purpose or use gaining an interest over that property. The two most common types of easements are appurtenant easements, and easements in gross. Appurtenant easements refer to cases where the land use is by another private owner, and can be granted by the owner of the land where the easement is located. It deals with a servient tenement (where the easement will be located) and a dominant tenement (the holder of the easement, and user of the land). 
In appurtenant easements, the dominant tenement selling their property entails the new owner to acquire the easement automatically. This type of easement benefits the dominant tenement over the servient tenement. Easements in gross deal with the use of a land that does not benefit any particular person or party. They are most commonly used by utility companies seeking the use of land to provide services, or install structures or components for their companies.
Licenses
A license grants the permission of a person to take part in an action or group of actions within the real private property of another owner. Unlike easements, licenses do not grant an interest in property to that person, they simply are a permission or authority to use that land at as indicated. Sometimes,  licenses can be compensated for by the licensee, and can be established in various ways. A license can be given by a verbal agreement, and revoked at any time as needed, by the land owner. 
When a license is inscribed in a written agreement, and even compensated for, it becomes irrevocable by the owner. Licenses can be implied by signs or advertisements in the cases of stores and their owners. For example, a store placing a sign outside urging prospective customers to come in and shop, is an invitation for those who read it to enter and shop in the store. Implied licenses can be abolished at any time, and any person found to be within the property after such revocation, can be prosecuted as a trespasser.

What You Must Know About Encumbrances Zoning

What You Must Know About Encumbrances Zoning

Zoning laws in real estate refer to the regulations set to demonstrate how a property will be used. These ordinances relate to the structure, both inside and out, of a building, house, or similar structure. They are set so that all the structures in a given place are fit to the standards set for development by that town, city, municipality, county, or state. Any change made to an existing property, as small as it is, must be placed against zoning laws to make sure it meets all codes and guidelines
The existence of zoning laws is to warrant that a property or structure on a property will be used beneficially for the public. There are different categories of zoning in real estate. They are agricultural, commercial, industrial, recreational, and residential. Residential real estate, the most common zoning structures, relate to single and multiple family dwellings, that may include an apartment or condominium complex. 
The real estate zoning laws for residential units limit different aspects of the structure and how it is used. For example, they can regulate the height of an apartment building complex, and the size in relation to the lot. In regards to single and multiple family dwellings, zoning laws require a permit for any modification to such a property even if changing the windows of a house, and of course if planning to expand the house. 
These regulations can keep a person from expanding their property against the proportions of a lot size in violation of the neighbor and the free space area guaranteed around it. The zoning laws can also restrain a single family home from becoming a multiple family home. These laws are extremely important for any new home buyer, or prospective buyer. A person can easily make the mistake of planning to purchase a home based on the improvements they foresee themselves doing to that property. 
This is why it can’t be stressed enough to familiarize oneself with the zoning laws for the place where you already own a home, if you’re looking to improve it, or where you will buy a home, for any future modifications and prevention thereof. 
Depending on the approval of a zoning change or variance, sometimes zoning laws can be overruled. A zoning change can take place through application by the property owner to do so. They must state the case of why the zoning change must happen using any means necessary (i.e. diagrams, models, etc..). A person seeking a zoning change can use the services of an attorney or an engineer for assistance with such a process.
An owner can also ask for a variance, which is simply a request to divert from the zoning laws that exist. This can grant a person the right to use the property for a purpose otherwise than what is intended in the zoning law. It is crucial for a current or prospective property owner, whether residential, commercial, etc… to become familiarized with zoning laws and the different ways to amend them if necessary.

Where to Find Brownfields

Where to Find BrownfieldsBrownfields are typically located where industrial or commercial sites used to exist. Abandoned factories and other polluting operations have been known to produce brown fields in city and town industrial sections. Urban environments can be home to brownfields as well since dry cleaners and gas stations are capable of producing brownfield sites. Any entity that produces any type of hazardous waste that travels or is placed in the land is capable of creating a brownfield. Establishments that use contaminates such as asbestos, hydrocarbon, solvents, pesticides or heavy metals such as lead have a chance of creating a brownfield. The Environmental Protection Agency can assist anyone interested in locating brownfields within their neighborhood or state. This can assist anyone interested in acquiring a brownfield or cleaning one up for safety and health reasons.

Everything You Must Know About Private Encumbrances

Everything You Must Know About Private Encumbrances

Private encumbrances refer to the hindrances held on a property by a private party that is involved with the property rather than a local government, department, etc…  Some examples of private encumbrances can be a mechanic’s lien, a judgment lien, a mortgage or an easement. Just like public encumbrances, private ones can impede the transfer of a property, by preventing certain, necessary actions.
A mechanic’s lien refers to a cost that the owner of a property has failed to pay. This cost is directly associated with the work performed on a property, whether a general contractor, plumber, roofer, or property maintenance. The person that has performed the work on the property will file a mechanic’s lien demanding that the debt owed will be satisfied. This lien, or claim, on the property serves as collateral until it is adjusted. 
Specifically, this claim can be transferred over to a new owner if they purchase the property before it is dealt with, and that debt will now have to be taken care of by the new owner as they have accepted the responsibility in conjunction with the property. Judgement liens are debts that also come along with the property, in relation to an unpaid amount of money from the previous owner due to a lawsuit outcome. 
This lawsuit is in relation to an accident or occurrence that has taken place on the property. That debt is now recorded into a Judgement Book and becomes a judgment lien on the property. The lien on the property will remain in place until it has been settled by payment, or its expiration. A person can file a motion in court for the sale of a property in order to recover the money they are entitled to by the property owner (whether previous or current).  
Another example of an encumbrance (private) is an easement. There are different types of easements, but they  all deal with the right of using a property of an owner for a specific purpose. The two main categories of easements are easements in gross, and appurtenant easements. Easements in gross grant the owner of the easement the right of use of the real property for a specific purpose, while not benefiting  a parcel of the real property owned by the easement owner. An appurtenant easement’s purpose is to benefit an appropriate parcel of real property, and is automatically transferred with a transfer of ownership over the real property (that is benefited by the easement). 
A common easement on a property is a utility easement, which can give access to a utility company, be it electric, gas, cable, or telephone. The easement would allow such companies to place certain devices on the property to transfer their services to the owner’s property or perhaps a neighboring or adjacent property. These easements are used widely in areas with limited access, where it becomes difficult for a utility company to give services to a given property, or simply wire their services through the town or city.
Access easements give an individual the right pass through the property of another owner to access a public street. This can happen in the case of a house that is behind another in location, and blocked off, or obstructed from the public street in relation to access. In this case a special driveway may be constructed as an access easement, on the property of the house in front of them, as an access route to that street. Regardless of their type, easements grant access over a property to another person.

Must Know Facts About Encumbrance

Must Know Facts About Encumbrance

Encumbrances relate to the impedance’s in real estate, that a property can face which prevent the owner of that property from holding a title for it. Certain encumbrances that a home owner can face are mortgages, liens, certain restrictions, and building orders. These encumbrances can slow down or prevent the transfer of the property to the owner. They can also affect not only the title of the property, but the value of it as well.
An encumbrance can be an interest of a property by a person that is not the home owner. Two type of encumbrances exist: money encumbrance and non-money encumbrance. A money encumbrance can be a lien placed on a property, such as a tax lien, mechanic’s lien, or mortgage. A non-money encumbrance could be an encroachment, and relate to how a property will be utilized. An encroachment refers to a piece of permanent property from a neighbor’s house that partially lies on your property, or vice versa. 
Such items can be a fence, a garage, a tree, a driveway, or shrubbery. Usually such property is crossed over without realization, rather than intentionally, and it may cross into the property line by a matter of only a few inches. The way something is determined as an encroachment is by taking a look at the building plans for the property, as well as blueprints or a spot survey. This can provide the person with the most accurate account of the property lines, and where any structure or building may come across those lines. Liens happen to be the most common encumbrances on a property. 
A lien that is placed against the property is a form of claim, which is a collateral held for a debt. When this debt is unpaid, the holder of the lien can pursue a motion in court to have the property sold so that the debt is paid off. A mechanic’s lien is a claim held against a property by a person who has completed work on it and has not been paid. When this happens they file the mechanic’s claim, if the property it sold to a new owner before the debt is paid, this lien is transferred to the new owner. Another encumbrance can be a deed restriction, which determines how a property can or cannot be used, as well as the structures that can be placed on a property. Usually, the builder will place deed restrictions so that they can keep the standards of construction on a property. 
These issues could cost a new owner a great deal of money in form of satisfying debts, and or legal fees. In order to get a better idea of encumbrances, one should look over a general list as well as special cases or examples of the process. This will assure the person they do not skim past one, prior to taking control of the property as a new owner.