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Easement maintainence

I have an old emergency vehicle and sewer easement along the entire west side of my property, It has been used and maintained (resealing the asphalt) by the HOA as a bicycle and walking path short cut to community center for many years. A few years ago they even had the bollards removed so that the golfers could drive their carts on it to get to the golf course quicker. The golf course maintenance crews are now using it as well. Along with that I now have regular street traffic trying to use it as well. Delivery trucks and cars have really accelerated the deterioration of the asphalt.

The HOA had no idea that is was actually an easement on my parcel until I did a garage addition to my house and showed them the plans along with the property lines. They thought I was building too close to “their” path. They allowed me to move forward with my city approved addition once I showed them it was actually my property.

A few years have passed and the HOA had the parking lot resealed but is refusing to have the path done since “it’s no longer their property”.

The city came out and stated they don’t need the emergency vehicle easement anymore, they just need the sewer easement to remain.

Can I now “close” this easement, reinstall the bollards and put a chain across it?

1 Response

  1. Dennis Legere

    Joe,
    While the property is yours the plat for the community identified the easement and to eliminate that easement, I believe that you would have to revise the plat. The plat is actually part of the CC&R and is recorded just like they are. I hope you understand that I’m not an attorney and cannot provide you legal advice. The association had absolutely no right pave the easement or allow pedestrian and golf cart use of your property without your permission. My recommendation is do nothing to remove the easement, but nothing can prevent you from putting a chain across the easement and posting a no trespass other than for emergency vehicles or sewer access sign on the chain. Since the City no longer has any need for emergency access, they simply won’t use it. Sewer access can be gained simply by removing the chain. If the HOA complains about the sign inform that you would not need the sign if they had not allowed golf carts and walkers to use your property without your permission. Tell them you will remove your sign if they install a sign stating that this is private property not for use by the general public or community members.

    Another option would be to sue the association for the unauthorized paving of your property and require them to remove the pavement and pay your legal fees.

    Dennis

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