Suing a Neighbor for Loss of Property Value – And Winning
Even if your property is in perfect condition, your neighbor’s actions can undermine the market value of your property. Depending on the severity of the issue, you may have a legal case based on nuisance laws.
In this article, we will define the ways that your neighbors can reduce your property’s value and what you can do to remedy the situation, including suing a neighbor for nuisance. We’ll also introduce a hassle-free way of suing anyone in small claims court using DoNotPay!
How Does Your Neighbor Affect Your Property Value?
Real estate buyers evaluate many factors before they decide to purchase. Even if your property is in perfect condition, your neighbor’s actions may undermine its value. Here are some ways that your neighbor can affect your property value:
|What Your Neighbor Does||How It Can Affect Your Property|
|Neglected lawn||Prospective homebuyers may be discouraged if your neighbor’s lawn isn’t well-maintained.|
|Noise||Noise pollution can deter potential buyers.|
|Substance abuse||Your property value can reduce if potential buyers suspect your neighbor abuses substances such as alcohol.|
|Pets||Families with small children usually put safety first and are less likely to buy a home where neighborhood pet dogs are not kept in their own yards or on leashes.|
|Violation of neighborhood rules and regulations||If you have neighbors who violate the homeowners association’s rules, these can adversely affect your property value.|
|Registered sex offenders||There is a 7% decrease in property value for homes that are located within a one-mile radius of a registered sex offender and a 14% loss of value within a 0.1-mile radius.|
|Poor paint job on a neighbor’s house||If your neighbor’s house hasn’t seen a fresh coat in decades, this may make a potential buyer think twice before making an offer.|
When Can You Sue Your Neighbor?
Suing a Neighbor for Nuisance
Nuisance refers to severe interference with the use and enjoyment of your property. Nuisance can be public or private. You can file a lawsuit for private nuisance and seek compensation for your damages. If you believe the damages are not an adequate legal remedy, you may also seek an injunction. Follow these steps:
- Temporary restraining order – This will take effect for a short period until a hearing where the court decides whether to issue the next phase.
- Preliminary injunction – This will take effect until the court decides whether to proceed with the last and final phase.
- Permanent injunction – The final phase where the court orders a person to take or refrain from certain activities.
Suing a Neighbor for Lack of Property Upkeep
What if your neighbor’s failure to upkeep his/her property has resulted in a fall in your property’s value? Unfortunately, it is unlikely that you could sue your neighbors for your property’s lost value. This is because your neighbors have no legal duty to mow their lawns or paint their houses.
Nonetheless, there are some things that you can do to remedy a situation where a neighbor fails to maintain his/her property:
- Get in touch with the municipality – Most municipalities have trustees or zone captains whose role is to handle these issues in the neighborhood.
- Contact the police – You should contact law enforcement if you suspect your neighbor is using his/her property for illegal activities.
- Organize a group of neighbors – It is likely that other neighbors are also affected by the same issue. You may start with a small meeting, build some awareness, and call for interest in building a corporation to take action. With enough pressure from other distressed property owners, you may be able to bring the issue to a city council, county, or municipality meeting.
- Litigate as a final resort – You may be able to build a good case against the neighbor and use nuisance laws as legal grounds for filing a lawsuit.
How to Sue a Neighbor with DoNotPay?
Suing a neighbor by yourself may not be as straightforward in practice, even if you decide to file a small claims suit. Let DoNotPay handle the work for you! The world’s first robot lawyer offers a streamlined approach to filing suits, and you can sue anyone in 4 simple steps:
- Log in to DoNotPay and select the Sue Now product
- Quantify your damages in monetary terms
- Select whether you want a demand letter or court filing forms
- Describe the reason for the lawsuit and submit any applicable evidence
That’s it! DoNotPay will generate a demand letter or court filing forms for you. A demand letter will also be mailed to your neighbor on your behalf!
What Else Can DoNotPay Do For You?
DoNotPay doesn’t stop at helping you sue your neighbor for loss of property value! The robot lawyer has been helping thousands of users sue anyone – from nuisance neighbors to big corporations such as: