Saturday, February 14, 2015

Saga Part II

Back in October, I posted about a saga with our property.

Since that post, when a survey had just been done, we've had to wait for the results of that as well as wait for the title company to get an appraisal company out to determine the decrease in value of my property due to the neighbor's encroachment. (Just hearing back from them took a month and a half. This has been a long process, and doesn't look like it will end anytime soon).

The final result is that the neighbor is on a total of 85 square feet of my property in two different places (that AC unit I referred to in my last post is on my property, too), with a devaluation of $5,000.00 to my property.

Now finally armed with this information, we had a meeting with them and the city planner on Tuesday.
I was hoping it would go well.
It didn't.
The neighbors were not civil.
At all.
They kept demanding to know why we had asked for this meeting and to know what we wanted. They got even less civil after hearing there was an encroachment issue.

Honestly, there are a lot of options for solving it.
They could tear down the part of their house that's on my property and move their AC unit (the most unlikely option, and one that probably neither of us care for).
They could give me 85 sq. ft. of their property.
They could pay me for whatever portion of my property they want to keep.
We could move our fence in the back (it sure would be nice to have enough room to walk back there), and the one on the side, thereby reducing the amount of my property that they're on, allowing them to pay me or trade me less. 
And probably a couple other options I'm not aware of.

But none of that is going to happen - at least not without another waiting period.

Because they think we're in the wrong.

First of all, they came into the meeting with what they were calling a survey of their property, but it was really an ILC, that they think proves their point about their property. Unfortunately for them, it was actually detrimental, because it doesn't show their house over my property line.
Secondly, they were saying that we were the ones encroaching, because our fence line is so close to their roof line, and because they "were here first."
Thirdly, because none of the previous owners of my house has had an issue.
Fourth, because I bought the house "as-is" (like it was a chipped piece of pottery or something).

They were in no mood to talk about a solution. When we mentioned the land trade, the man said, "Oh, I SEE WHAT YOU'RE AFTER! You want the property in back that you offered to buy from us that one time!"

Well, yes, that's one option.

Then we made the mistake of saying that would allow us to add on, and then he was stuck on that. "The city will never let you build an addition there!" (Mind you, all this was yelling. Neither of them spoke in a calm manner more than a couple times). He mentioned that over and over, like it would make me forget that he's on my property...?

Well, adding on is currently a non-issue. It is so far down the road that it is not the focus. The fact that there is a title issue with both our properties is the focus.

After much raising of voices, interrupting, debating, denying, and general unpleasantness, he let us know he'd "had enough of this" and walked out, his wife (I assume they're married) following on his heels.

So here's where we are now: The city will send them a letter stating that they are encroaching on my property. They will have, from my understanding, two or three months to fix the issue. If they don't, the city may have to take them to court. I don't know what solution they are going to come up with other than what I listed above, and they were unwilling to talk about those options. Honestly, I think they're going to do nothing. They seem very much like "screw other people" people.

So we wait again.