Whether you own a quarter-acre lot that abuts a major thoroughfare or multiple acres outside of town, your real estate may be one of your most valuable assets. You would likely count on it as a financial nest egg while simultaneously viewing it as part of the legacy that you hope to leave for the people you love, especially if you have built on the property or inherited it yourself.
Unfortunately, claims by outsiders could sometimes affect the value of your property or your right to do with it what you please. Utility companies, for example, could request an easement to place electrical wires or other infrastructure on your property. Do you have to approve a utility easement as a property owner in Georgia?
You technically have the right to deny an easement
Your rights as a property owner include deciding who has access to and use of your property. You can refuse a utility easement request, especially if there are alternate properties that the company could use instead of yours. In cases where the public would benefit from the easement, you might wind up in court if you refuse to grant it voluntarily.
What could an easement mean for you?
It will restrict how you use your property. You generally need to keep the right-of-way unobstructed around a utility easement. In fact, you may have to avoid using the property around any power lines or buried cables. The presence of utility infrastructure on your property could impact the resale value of your real estate.
How should property owners respond to easement requests?
It is reasonable for someone to want time to consider a request by a local utility company for an easement on their property. In situations where they would likely be able to complete the project without using your property, you may want to deny them the easement because they can use the neighboring property instead.
Thinking carefully about the long-term impact of the project on your property and the nearby area could help you decide how to respond to an easement request. Understanding the Georgia approach to utility easements and the installation of power lines can help you protect one of your biggest investments.