Adverse Possession details: building on land in Boston Metro area

Additional Information:

If one were to begin maintaining and occupying land to claim through adverse possession, is it possible to build a dwelling/building IE: house and/or garage on said land? Legally? What about taxes/permits/etc?  If this land was to be reclaimed by the owner before the 20year period, what would happen to the dwelling/building?

ATTORNEY ANSWER:

Home ownership through adverse possession is not a good strategy. Typically, claims of adverse possession arise when two neighboring homeowners do not know exactly where the property line exists and/or are mistaken about a property line, and one homeowner maintains a portion of the other homeowner’s land for the requisite period of time. In order obtain title to a piece of property through adverse possession, a homeowner and/or their predecessor in title (i.e. prior owner) must show that they have used and enjoyed a portion of the disputed land openly, notoriously, exclusively and adversely to all the world continuously for at least twenty years. In addition, one cannot maintain the land with the permission of the true owner. In addition, you will need evidence to prove your claim of adverse possession which usually involves a survey, pictures, videotape and live testimony from witnesses.

The Boston Metro Real Estate Attorneys at Goldman & Pease provide legal services to individuals and businesses for all real estate transactions in the Boston metro region including Alston, Arlington, Belmont, Brighton, Brookline, Cambridge, Canton, Dedham, Dover, Milton, Natick, Needham, Newton, Norwood, Waltham, Watertown, Wayland, Wellesley, Weston, West Roxbury, Westwood, and all of Massachusetts.