I read with great interest your piece on boundary lines. My situation is similar, but my neighbor's house extends past the property line by about 12 inches, counting the roof overhang. This was not discovered until she had a certified survey done in dispute of the placement of my fence. I had a Realtor come to my house to discuss selling, and he informed me that it was a problem that had to be taken care of before I could sell. Now my neighbor has sold her house, and I don't know what to do. Any help or advice would be appreciated.
This minor encroachment of your neighbor's house on your property can be addressed in several ways: You can take a hard-line approach and demand that the neighbor remove the encroaching improvement. Alternatively, you can take a less drastic approach and negotiate with your neighbor to allow an easement for the encroachment or sell a strip of your land on which the encroachment exists.
The neighbor may claim that the encroachment has existed for more than 20 years. If that is true, the neighbor may have obtained an "easement by prescription," giving the neighbor the right to continue use of your property. Even if 20 years has not elapsed, a court may be reluctant to require the neighbor to remove costly improvements that encroach only 12 inches on to your property.
You should consult a lawyer to review the entire situation, and decide on the best alternative to resolve this dispute.