Boundary disputes have been an issue for as long as people have claimed the rights to pieces of land. If you are fortunate, you will notice problems before you purchase a property. Yet, often, you do not discover them until afterward. What then?
Once you discover a boundary concern, the sooner you do something about it, the better. Most boundary disputes will need solving eventually, and the longer it is left, the more complicated it could be when someone does try to clarify things.
Land disputes get more complicated over time
As time goes on, people invest more money into each piece of real estate. Homeowners add an extension, upgrade their fence, or someone buys the land and builds 50 houses on it. So while confusion over the boundary may not seem an issue now, it may be a high-stakes problem in the future, especially when one side of the fence changes hands.
Failing to take action now could also lead to you losing land. For example, you inherited a piece of farmland some years ago. A farmworker was living in one of the old barns at the time, and as they appeared to be doing no harm, you decided they could stay. When you come to sell the land and ask them to leave, they refuse and claim something similar to squatter’s rights, called adverse possession. If they have been there for at least 20 years and met other requirements, they may succeed in claiming it as theirs.
Remember that property is often a large part of the inheritance your children will receive when you die. Ensuring the extent of your property is clearly defined while you are alive will make it easier for them once you are gone.