What restrictions on owning real property are imposed by law?

There may be a large number of federal, State, county and local laws which restrict what you can do with the real property that you own. The three most common restrictions imposed by government are:

(1) zoning – restriction on the use of the property as to residential, industrial, agricultural, or commercial purposes are very common.

(2) environmental hazards – what materials can be stored on the real property as well as who is responsible for removing environmental hazards from real property (such as asbestos, lead paint, petro-chemicals, radon and toxic wastes).

(3) public easement and right of way – a portion of the real property may have to be left open for others to use. Easements and right of way are used to allow access to other property, to provide for roads and sidewalks, and to enable electric/gas/telephone/sewer lines to be installed.

Violation of government law can result in fines, penalties, injunctions and even criminal prosecution resulting in prison. Contact an O.W.D lawyer before buying real property to learn all that you can and cannot do with your property.