Easement rights enable you to use a portion of another landowner’s property. The most common use is driving through a neighbor’s property to access a landlocked home or business. When a real estate transaction occurs, an existing easement usually transfers to the new owner.

A deed or other legal instrument may describe a property’s easement in writing, which a court generally recognizes. According to the Oregon State Bar, a property owner can also tailor an agreement to meet both parties’ needs.

Crossing a property without a right of way

Without an easement, an individual may face trespassing allegations each time he or she uses a neighboring property. If a landlocked location has a commercial enterprise, customers causing damage to a neighbor’s property may result in a business owner facing a civil lawsuit. A court may order a business owner to pay for damages and to stop customers from trespassing.

Requesting use of a neighbor’s property

Oregon’s laws require obtaining permission to access or use a property owner’s land. After securing an easement, the user must then maintain and repair that portion of the property.

If a neighbor refuses to grant the right of way, you may have an option to make an offer to purchase the land. A neighbor could sell you a portion of his or her property based on fair market value.

Purchasing an entire property as an option

As reported by KATU News, the City of Portland purchased an entire property from its owner so that it could construct a planned water filter plant. The city found it more affordable to own the land, demolish the house on it and run underground pipes through the property.

If a property owner refuses to grant an easement request, it may require a legal action to come to a mutually agreeable arrangement.