Landlocked property is not desirable for property owners because its use is limited. Cities or counties may inadvertently create landlocked property when a new highway is built with no entry or exit alongside a piece of property, such as farmland. Some possible remedies exist, but the value of the land is always affected.
A landlocked piece of land is a parcel of property that has no legal access road. Landlocked properties are surrounded by land that is owned by others on all sides. Landlocked property usually results from a landowner subdividing his property into one or more parcels with no public roads in between.
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Appraising the value of vacant land involves assessing the surrounding area and the land itself. The land parcel's size, shape, condition, slope, ease of building and zoning all affect its value. For example, a property may be zoned as residential and commercial, or just residential, or single-family home or a multi-unit property. Other characteristics affect the value of a piece of land, for example, if the property has an ocean view, the value would increase. Additionally, land value is influenced by the value of comparable properties in the area.
Landlocked parcels of land have a substantially reduced value because of the lack of access. Additionally, some cities will not allow building to take place on landlocked parcels which further reduces their value. Because so many factors are considered when appraising a piece of land, land owners must work with an experienced property appraiser to come up with a specific value for their piece of land.
Easements are used in real estate to create limited property rights for third parties. The third party gains the right to use someone else's property for a specifically defined purpose, even though the land does not belong to him. A property owner may choose to grant his neighbor an easement if his land blocks the neighbor's access to a road for property entry and exit.
History of the Land
Owners of landlocked parcels may find it worthwhile to learn about the land's history and find out if the property was correctly and legally subdivided. They may want to hire an attorney and check the property for possible existing easements that have been violated by owners of neighboring properties. For example, one owner of a landlocked piece of property found that a neighbor had constructed a lake over an ingress and egress, or entry and exit, easement. With the help of Courtney B. Harden, a civil litigation attorney, the land owner was able to get the neighbor to agree to an access road built on another portion of the neighbor's property.