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Tennessee Land Use & Zoning Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: I bought land from someone who never filed easement.

I bought land from an individual who never went and filed the easement I actually didn't even know what an easement was until I put the land up for sale on the market and the realtor needed a copy of it I had to worry the original seller for four months just to get it and the original easement was... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Dec 9, 2019

I doubt the seller can get owners of other properties to execute a Deed of Easement for the benefit of your land. Suing for breach of warranties will be useless also. You probably have no choice but to either file suit in

Chancery Court to have an Easement Declared (which will be...
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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Tennessee on
Q: We want to buy some property but on the power lines at the side of the property it has a sign that says wetland 29

What does this mean?

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Dec 5, 2019

I do not know what "29" is, but wetland means you can do nothing with a generally defined area of the property. It sounds like TVA has run their easement very carefully. You may not wish to buy t he property. Or you might hire a competent attorney to conduct a title search, and possibly hire... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Tennessee on
Q: I bought some land from someone cash money and now I can't sell ?

I bought land from an individual last year, I paid cash money & she ensured me that she could type of the deed. Me not really knowing the importance of the lawyer(but I do now !!) I said ok & she did so. I went to courthouse & filed it. 6 months later I decided to sell through a Realty company, Its... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Dec 5, 2019

You have not identified what your problems are. But I suspect access to the property and derivation of title will be definitely part of your title problems. This was not something to do without a lawyer. Even if you are able to sue for breach of warranties, it is doubtful it will actually help.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Tennessee on
Q: Who owns the property that is located between the road & the sidewalk? (Kingsport, Sullivan Co., TN)
Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Nov 6, 2019

Usually that area is part of the Highway Right of Way, even though it may not be paved or traveled upon regularly. Sometimes TN DOT maps will disclose this. At the very least the public has the area dedicated to them and/or the public has a prescriptive use easement over it. If it is a large,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Personal Injury, Car Accidents and Land Use & Zoning for Tennessee on
Q: If a city street has been officially studied & identified as overcrowded for 5+ yrs and city continues to approve

development projects that add even more traffic to the same street without any improvements and traffic accidents increase as a result of overly congested streets, could the city be held liable for injuries and damage to vehicles since they knew the street was over capacity but continued to... Read more »

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar answered on Oct 23, 2019

You raise an interesting point, and in a textbook-type analysis, your argument would be strong. But in reality, this takes everywhere, and most courts would not be likely to consider such arguments. Most courts would limit their analysis to the immediate parties at hand. Good luck

Tim...
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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Tennessee on
Q: In Tennessee... how long do restrictive covenants run?

The HOA that I am a member of has restrictive covenants, and no expiration date is listed on the document. The covenants appear to run with the land, as most of the subdivision is still just land, and not many homes are built yet. Are the covenants permanent, or does Tennessee code have something... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Sep 24, 2019

Generally speaking covenants running with the land are perpetual. The Master Deed may have some limitations or the HOA may fall into disarray. They may become unenforceable, but are not rescinded per se, as once they are out there, it is forever. You might try to transfer in violation of them... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Civil Litigation, Elder Law and Land Use & Zoning for Tennessee on
Q: Owned home in Nashville,TN almost 12 yrs.My neighbor 2 doors down bought the house between us 4Airbnb/Rs13 enchroached

My land when he said he would not dig up my land and if did would let me know,. He took the chain link fence down 30' that's been up for years without my permission, to bring in bulldozer/grader.for building a drench. he could of taken down his fence since he owns the property . I asked him in... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Aug 30, 2019

You have a Boundary Line Dispute, and actions for Trespass and possible Tort Damages. You probably need a competent attorney to perform title searches on both properties, and may need a boundary line survey. All of this is expensive, and you will probably recover very little but defend your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Landlord - Tenant for Tennessee on
Q: Landlord let neighbors take down fence and drive through our yard without notice while no one was home is that legal?

My husband noticed that a section of the barbed wire fence between our rental property and the neighbors field had a section missing and there were tractor tire marks in our driveway and grass. He texted our landlord and he said yes he gave the neighbors permission to do so. This morning I watched... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Aug 19, 2019

You are not the owner, and the owner can grant easements and licenses.

You might claim the traffic is interfering with your exclusive possession and use of the Leasehold, but what would be your damages? By the time you went to Court, your Lease would be over or the Landlord would...
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1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law and Land Use & Zoning for Tennessee on
Q: is a new development liable for damage they cause to my property? flooding from raised elevation?
Paul E. Tennison
Paul E. Tennison answered on Jul 24, 2019

Depending on more facts, yes they could be. I recommend you consult with an experienced construction law attorney to determine what your legal options are in this situation. Good luck.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: Can a new subdivision direct the rain runoff onto my property, to the point that when it rains my buildings are flooded?

This was reported to codes a couple of months ago, but the drainage on my property is getting worse not better.

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Jul 23, 2019

The law describes this as a "nuisance" - this is a legal term beyond the normal meaning of just an aggravating situation. Take lots of pictures of the existing problem , and hopefully there are other witnesses in addition to you who can describe how the development of the subdivision has created... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning for Tennessee on
Q: Our development has restrictive covenants. Several homeowners are violating these covenants. What can we do? No HOA.

A variety of infractions from above ground pools, parking RVs and boats permanently in driveways, commercial vehicles at home every night and failure to keep unimproved lots mowed. We feel this is all impacting our own homes value. We bought expecting the rules to apply to everyone.

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Jul 22, 2019

You and other affected landowners can sue the offending landowners.

Normally you would sue for a Mandatory Injunction in Chancery Court.

But why? No damages are recoverable and you are talking about suing alot of your neighbors. Subdivisions are a bad place to buy to start with,...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Constitutional Law, Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: If I am renting a house to own from a individual and bank forecloses on it what rights do I have?

Having minor children. And doing all repairs myself

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on May 23, 2019

The Bank will take subject to your status as a renter. But it is very easy to declare you in default and file a Detainer Warrant on you. You get served then go to Court. If not out after 10 days , the Bank will get a Writ of Possession issued and executed by the Sheriff. The Bank is the owner... Read more »

Q: Hello, I currently bought land and the owner before stated the septic tank was on the property.

A week after closing my realtor sends me a message from the seller stating they took out the septic tank and I can’t find any documents. Is this legal? And if not how can I go about getting this corrected.

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Mar 6, 2019

This is too complicated to answer without reviewing your contact , any disclosures and the closing documents. It may be that some misrepresentations were made during the sale, and if so, you may be entitled to rescind the contract ( give the land back and get your money back) or alternatively, you... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Land Use & Zoning, Real Estate Law, Estate Planning and Family Law for Tennessee on
Q: My grandma passed and left alot of land to my mother, brother, sister and I.

There was almost 600 acres there and i owned part in every bit of it. Well I recwntly moved back into town and heard that my mom has sold all of the land and my siblings got the suarw of money that was rightfully theirs, but I was just completely cut out all together. There is probably 600,000... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Feb 15, 2019

You have only stated you got an ownership interest in the Property from your Grandmother. However you have not stated how this came about, such as a Deed, Will or an Inheritance. You will need a Title Search at a minimum, and possibly an Affidavit of Heirship. If you are actually a Tenant In... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Tennessee on
Q: I have an easement and I am landlocked (washed out access) and can't find the owner. He moved out of state what can I do

I live in Tennessee

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Jan 21, 2019

Apparently you have the Dominant Estate and enjoy an Easement over the Servient Estate. Try to find who the responsible taxpayer is from the Tax Assessor and his address. You probably can rebuild the right of way, but do no expand it beyond what you already had or what an appurtenant Easement... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Environmental, Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: I have a creek on my property, approximately 3-5ft deep, and I want to dig out a watering hole for livestock. Can I ?

I am currently in the process of fencing in an area that encloses a section of the creek on my property. The creek has a wide location where a secondary stream once ran around a dune, but now it's back down to the one main creek bed. I want to dig out the dune area, and open this naturally widened... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Jan 1, 2019

Your downstream Landowners are the ones that might give you problems. If your pond stops the water flow of the creek beyond your property, then the adjoining Landowners may possibly sue you for Damages, an Injunction, Declaratory Judgment, etc. It may even be a benefit to the downstream... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: A corporation just bought the three neighboring houses next to mine with intentions to put a hotel on the properties.

A corporation just bought the three neighboring houses next to mine with intentions to put a hotel on the properties. What options do I have, as this will not only be a nuisance, but create traffic issues, make the area unsafe (due to the type of people it will potentially bring in), and... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Dec 28, 2018

You will want to check the Zoning Class of each Parcel. If the Zoning does not allow the correct Commercial Use, complain to the Codes Officer, Zoning Commission and the County Mayor. Filing suit for an Injunction will be very expensive and difficult, and will probably fail.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: I have a property with an ingress/egress easement for the drive that is already there.

Once the drive is in place can it be used by both myself and the easement owner legally since I own the land?

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Oct 22, 2018

Not enough information provided to accurately answer-This depends on the wording of the easement-unless it is specifically restricted in some way, the landowner can still use the property as long as the intended purpose/use of the easement is not unreasonably interfered with.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning, Landlord - Tenant and Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: Is a landlord required to give a place to live if the house they are living in becomes non residential?
Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Jun 21, 2018

Your question doesn't include enough details to truly provide an accurate answer, but unless there is a written lease that says otherwise, I would say probably not. If some zoning board or governmental entity has changed the residential status of the property, that is no the landlord's fault, it's... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning, Landlord - Tenant and Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: My landlord was mowing the yard and accidentally hurled a rubber mallet through my window. What should I do?

I had just left the bedroom and glass went all over me and my kids beds. The hammer could have potentially hurt or killed someone and the glass could also have done damage to someone. Who can I tell about this, or what can I do to maybe get this resolved or compensated? All the landlord told me was... Read more »

Bennett James Wills
Bennett James Wills answered on Jun 6, 2018

If no one was injured the only recourse is to have the landlord replace the window, which you said they'll do. Unless someone is damaged or hurt, there's no legal recourse.

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