An easement is a legal right allowing someone to use or access a particular part of someone else’s property for a specific purpose. There are 14 types of easements which are:
- Right of Way Easement
- Water-Related Easement, such as a Drivable Approach, Overland Landing Site, Water Intake Line, Water Distribution Line, and Water Delivery Line
- Drainage Easements
- Lateral Support Easement
- Private Easement
- Access Easement
- Conservation Easement
- Prescriptive Easement
- Utility easements (power, cable, telephone, etc.)
- Temporary Construction Easement
- Drivable Approach
- Right to Expand
- Water Delivery Line
- Cable or Satellite
The detail of each type of easement is below:
1. Right of Way Easement
A right-of-way easement is a type of easement that allows someone to travel or pass through someone else’s property. This type of easement is often used for public roads or sidewalks.
2. Water-Related Easements
There are five water-related easements: a drivable approach, overland landing site, water intake line, water distribution line, and water delivery line. A drivable approach easement is an easement that allows someone to drive through someone else’s property for access purposes. Overland landing sites are overland sites where boats or other watercraft can dock, even if there is no navigable body of water nearby. Water intake lines take water from a well, stream, or lake and deliver the water elsewhere via a pipe; this type of easement usually allows someone to make any changes they want to the line as long as it still works properly. A water distribution line is very similar to the intake line, except that this easement delivers the water away from the source instead of bringing it in. Finally, a water delivery line takes the product (water) provided by either an intake or distribution system and delivers it to the user.
3. Drainage Easements
A drainage easement is an easement that ensures people will not build anything on the part of their property that would affect the flow of water from another’s property onto their own if it causes flood damage to them or blocks access to a road.
4. Lateral Support Easements
A lateral support easement prevents someone from making additions to their property which could cut off the support provided by a nearby older structure or tree roots, causing damage to the older structure/trees and possibly damaging the newer addition.
5. Private Easements
When a private easement is created by agreement between two parties, either party can terminate it without the permission of the other.
6. Access Easements
An access easement allows someone to use another’s property for a specific purpose (in this case, entering and exiting their land) but does not grant ownership.
7. Conservation Easement
A conservation easement is an easement that aims to protect natural or historical sites by limiting development on the surrounding properties. The size of conservation easements can range from 10 acres or less up to hundreds of thousands of acres; they are often used in conjunction with funding sources like “green grants,” which pay people willing to create conservation projects on their property.
8. Prescriptive Easements
A prescriptive easement is established when one party uses another person’s land without permission for such a long time that the original owner can no longer seek legal recourse. This type of easement is not always recognized and must still meet other qualifications to be valid.
9. Utility Easements
A utility easement allows power companies or similar organizations to place power lines on the property without requiring landowner permission. An example of this would be if a line were being placed underground not to be seen but was still needed for maintenance purposes.
10. Temporary Construction Easements
Temporary Construction Easements are used when construction equipment needs to enter someone else’s property to complete a job temporarily, for instance, putting up new telephone poles, installing gas pipelines, or laying drainage pipes for construction. Temporary Construction Easements usually last no longer than 180 days but can be extended by the original easement holder with written notice to all affected parties.
11. Drivable Approach
A drivable approach easement allows people or goods to pass over another person’s property to gain access to their own. It also provides the right-of-way for a driveway or road, whether it’s part of a larger easement or exists independently.
12. Right to Expand
A right to expand easement is given to an individual or organization so that they can legally enlarge an existing structure on their property without requiring landowner permission. For example, if someone wants to build an addition onto their house but has no way of getting there except over another person’s land, they would need to have this type of easement granted before construction could begin.
13. Water Delivery Line
A water delivery line takes the product (water) delivered by either an intake or distribution system and provides it to the party with the water delivery line easement.
14. Cable or Satellite
A cable or satellite easement is given to one party so that they can install either cable TV lines or antennas on another’s property for television reception purposes.
Easements are rights enjoyed by one individual or entity to use someone else’s property for a specific purpose, such as delivering water or piping gas through the land without requiring landowner permission (although some compensation for this right is usually expected). There are 14 different easements, each with its own rules and regulations.
Types Of Easements
- What are some common types of easements?
There are many different types of easements, but some of the most common include:
Right of way: This allows the holder to cross the property for a specific purpose, such as accessing a public road.
A utility easement allows the holder to access and maintain utilities, such as power lines or water pipes that run across the property.
Drainage easement: This allows the holder to drain water from their property onto the property of another party.
Agricultural easement: This allows the holder to use the land for agricultural purposes, such as grazing livestock or growing crops.
- Can an easement be used to restrict the use of the servient estate?
Yes, in some cases. For example, an easement may allow a utility company to maintain power lines on private property but restrict them from using that property for anything else.
- Do I have to give something up to get an easement?
No, an easement is a legal right and does not require the holder to give anything up. However, the holder may need to pay for the right to use the land.