Neighbor dug up one of my survey stakes

In the process of my neighbor's development and sale of some property adjacent to ours, a new water main was installed, and now appears one of our corner survey stakes is gone due to excavation, trenching etc...
Actually he's a pretty good guy, and a new road was put in at considerable expense just so I would no longer have to share my driveway...given that an abandoned easment has gotta be worth something.......and even though I did pay him a sizable portion of money to help share the cost of the new driveway...
Any suggestions on what might be the best way to handle this before I even get in contact with him about the need for having said survey stake replaced ???
TIA
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PrecisionMachinisT wrote:

I lost track of the stakes on my property during the 19 years since we built the place.
A new neighbor moved in next door a couple of years ago and had landscapers excavate some of the slope down from the part of my backyard we use and also install some stone retaining walls, shrubbery and lawn there.
I kinda had a feeling they'd come "over the line" but I kept my mouth shut and hired a surveyor who staked out the place for me and gave me a plot plan with numerous reference distances from the perimeter of our homes foundations marked on it. (A $1,100 cost).
Once the stakes went in I took a whole bunch of photos from various angles showing them in relationship to fixed objects so I'll at least have a little better reference if I get curious again in the future.
I had remembered correctly. One of the freshly planted corner stakes was stuck into the neighbor's new lawn and portions of the masonry work he'd had done wwere clearly about five feet onto my side of the line separating us.
I'd only met the neighbors briefly a couple of times when we waved hello to each other, but I looked up their names. Their phone was unlisted so I made a polite attempt to put things right by sending them a letter describing the situation and offering to sell him the property he was using for its tax assessed value (About $5,000) if he paid the associated titling and registration costs, or I would "rent it" to them for just the aportioned property tax I'm paying on that bit of land. (About $100 a year.)
The husband played Denny the Dunce and when I saw him outside a month later and pinged him about it he mumbled something about having to hire his own surveyor before he could give me an answer. Two months later I'd heard nothing further from him.
Our lot happens to be "Registered Land" here in Taxachusetts, which according to my lawyer is a higher form of land documentation not subject to anyone gaining rights to continued use through adverse possession.
My lawyer (wisely I think) advised me not to get into a legal pissing contest with that skunk because the costs would likely exceed the value of that bit of land, which I wasn't using anyway. Because of the eight foot drop down a steep slope from my backyard down to the neighbor's backyard the land he grabbed looks like it's part of his lot anyway, so I would come out seeming "the dog in the manger" if I started a lawsuit over it.
I'd much rather not have to live next door to someone I was in a declared feud with, so I just explained the registered land thing to the neighbor and told him he could go on using it, but with the risk that a subsequent owner of my lot might not be of like mind.
However, I must confess that the devil has made me start dumping every bit of my vegetative garden trash, up to and including small tree branches, over my fence onto what's still my land so that the neighbor can suffer a view of what I can easily say I was using as my composting area for years before they moved in. It's even better if he happens to see me while I'm tossing another trash barrel full over, so I can wave cheerfully to him.....and he's obligated to respond. (I conjure up mental images of living in olde England, opening my bedroom window, and dumping a full chamberpot onto the head of someone on the sidewalk two floors below.)<G>
**********
All of which reminds me of a quote I read earlier today:
We receive three educations, one from our parents, one from our schoolmasters, and one from the world. The third contradicts all that the first two teach us.
Charles Baron De Montesquieu (1689-1755)
**********
Jeff
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Jeffry Wisnia

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Jeffry wrote: A great tale! Heeheee! Tom
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However, I must confess that the devil has made me start dumping every bit of my vegetative garden trash, up to and including small tree branches, over my fence onto what's still my land so that the neighbor can suffer a view of what I can easily say I was using as my composting
area for years before they moved in. It's even better if he happens to see me while I'm tossing another trash barrel full over, so I can wave cheerfully to him.....and he's obligated to respond. (I conjure up mental images of living in olde England, opening my bedroom window, and
dumping a full chamberpot onto the head of someone on the sidewalk two floors below.)<G>
Talk about $h*tting in your own nest, sounds like a great way to build neighborly good will that can be a real help in a crisis. He may fail to remember a good description of the thief that burgles your house, or go take a nap when you need him to call an ambulance...-Jitney
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snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

I figured that with friends like him I didn't need enemies, Jitney.
Why would I expect someone who has already shown himself to have the morals of a thief to help me if and when I needed it?
I'll rely on my alarm system and my other decent neighbor friends for help when I need some.
If I was filled from my toes to my waist with Milk of Magnesia, and from my waist to my neck with Ex Lax, I'd sooner trust a fart than trust that encroaching neighbor below.
Jeff
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Jeffry Wisnia

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Determine if they have to be replaced for one thing. Nice to have, surely, but your hose won't fall down if it is missing. Who took it out? Neighbor, contractor?
I'd talk to the neighbor and just ask him if he knows what happened to it.
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PrecisionMachinisT wrote:

I have not seen mine in 10 years. I am not at all certain where they are and I don't think anyone else does. That said, I still own the same property as I did before and if I want to put up a fence or build on the lot, I am required to have a crew come out and re-stake it, even if there is one already there (I think mine just got buried.
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our
an
replaced
My corner stakes are a PVC pipe but there are also steel or bronze pipes buried in the ground next to them. I don't think anyone is allowed to remove the buried markers, at least not where I live (Riverside County CA). If you poke around a little or have a metal detector maybe they are still there.
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considerable
did
even
CA).
THx
Nope, I was there while he was in the middle of his digging, he struck the electric utility primary, it shut down our machine shop for several hours.......
I saw all the mess, and I watched the utility company splice the wire......I also saw the old rebar stake with its little yellow cap sticking out of the dirt pile.
Its fucking gone.
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On Sat, 20 Aug 2005 00:31:09 -0700, "PrecisionMachinisT"

In Arizona here's what our law says about that:
40-360.22. Excavations; determining location of underground facilities; providing information; excavator marking; on-site representative; validity period of markings; liability for misuse of locate requests; detectible underground locating devices; civil penalty
A. A person shall not make or begin any excavation in any public street, alley, right-of-way dedicated to the public use or utility easement, in any express or implied private property utility easement, without first determining whether underground facilities will be encountered, and if so where they are located from each and every underground facilities operator and taking measures for control of the facilities in a careful and prudent manner.

In Arizona here's what our law says:
D. A person who knowingly or by gross negligence destroys, disfigures, removes or disturbs monuments described in subsection C or other permanent monuments set by the land surveyor which have the land surveyor's or public agency's cap or tag affixed to the monument is guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor.
E. A person acting independently or a person in responsible charge of another person who destroys, disfigures or disturbs monuments described in subsection C or other permanent monuments set by the land surveyor which have the land surveyor's or public agency's cap or tag affixed to the monument shall be civilly liable to the state, political subdivision or any other person for all costs associated with restoration or replacement of any monument destroyed, disfigured, removed or disturbed. The remedies under this subsection are in addition to any penalty which can be imposed under subsection D.
I'm sure your state has similar.
Here's a personal example of the importance of this stuff:
The property I'm on was once owned jointly by two brothers. When brother "A" decided to build this house he and brother "B" did a straw deed split. The original parcel was 4 acres, less a 30' road easement at one end. The new deeds were worded such that each brother suffered a loss of 15 feet. While complicated, the language was understandable with careful reading.
In my purchase contract I demanded that the seller hire a registered surveyor to find or place corner pins. This was done and the surveyor drafted a new property description. The problem was that he revised the language and the title company used (and insured) his description rather than the one previously recorded.
Brother B then sold his parcel to an adjacent neighbor, who split off a piece to expand his propery and make it impossible to build more than one house on the remainder. He then built the one house on spec. By chance I saw that one survey pin had been moved.
The neighbor had determined (correctly) that the new survey was wrong; the surveyor had given me back the 15' that I shouldn't own. The neighbor decided (incorrectly) that He could move the pin. When I informed him of his misdeed (no pun intended) he contacted the surveyor, who had to redo the survey at his expense.
I now had a clouded title so my lawyer filed a claim against my title insurance who had to pay me for my "lost" land, for the drawing of a new deed, and my lawyer's fees.
Talk to the neighbor and tell him that it's important to you that the pin be replaced by a registered surveyor in case you ever want to sell, build, etc. If he is a good neighbor, he should see your position and comply. If he isn't then you know where you stand with him and you can go from there.
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===Snip==

Wes,
Thanks, lotsa good infor there.
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PrecisionMachinisT wrote:

It's not THAT big a deal. Your survey may reference that marker, but the township should have other markers that can be used.
I'd have it replaced soon though. The survey may not be cheap if the surveyor has to look up a couple of properties to find the next nearest reference mark. (Make sure the other guy pays. Or better yet the contractor who dug the marker up)
Brad
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PrecisionMachinisT wrote:

He hit the utility *primary* (at least 7000V, more likely 11kV+)? I would have paid to see that.
Best regards, Bob
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of
that
still
the
wire......I
the
11 kv.--just goes berblang up at the pole where the service goes from overhead to underground--not much different than when a squirrel commits suicide......I wasnt there at that point though....
Fwiw I know the procedure for safely excavating around / exposing utilitys without actually striking them...( use a shovel and dig by hand, letting gravity be your freind and also carefully spot the hoe operator so that he dont dig into any virgin soil, as he is sposed to be only the loosened dirt up out of the ditch )
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[snip]

For clarification -- there are permanent markers installed as references for future use, and there are more temporary markers that surveyors put in when rechecking a survey (e.g., for a property sale). The title mentions "my survey stake", but the discussion implies this is a permanent marker that was dug up during excavation. If so, it's also "his survey stake." Suggestion -- if you're on good terms with the other owner, just ask him how and when he's going to replace the survey stake that his contractor dug up, since it's important to you, too.
If you'd rather not get into it with him, there surely was a building permit for the work being done, and it would be easy to go to the building inspector and ask that they note during their inspections that the marker needs to be replaced in order to clear the permit.
In any case, missing a single stake doesn't seem to be a big problem to me, since they can be replaced using standard survey procedures . . .
In my case, our property line runs through wooded terrain and it's not possible to get a good visual fix from front to back, and my house is far enough from the property line so that it isn't easy to measure from the house to find the boundary. So when my new neighbor cleared his lot we planted a couple of shrubs exactly on the property line, for future reference. Of course, when he builds he'll have a professional survey to make sure his house meets the setback requirements, but our shrubbery helps for things like planting gardens and mowing lawns. Regards --
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| | | In the process of my neighbor's development and sale of some | | | property adjacent to ours, a new water main was installed, and | | | now appears one of our corner survey stakes is gone due to | | | excavation, trenching etc... | | | | | | Actually he's a pretty good guy, and a new road was put in at | | | considerable expense just so I would no longer have to share my | | | driveway...given that an abandoned easment has gotta be worth | | | something.......and even though I did pay him a sizable portion | | | of money to help share the cost of the new driveway... | | | | | | Any suggestions on what might be the best way to handle this | | | before I even get in contact with him about the need for having | | | said survey stake replaced ??? | | | | | | | | | TIA | | | | | | -- | | | | | | SVL | | | | | My corner stakes are a PVC pipe but there are also steel or bronze | | pipes buried in the ground next to them. I don't think anyone is | | allowed to remove the buried markers, at least not where I live | | (Riverside County CA). If you poke around a little or have a metal | | detector maybe they are still there. | | | | THx | | Nope, I was there while he was in the middle of his digging, he | struck the electric utility primary, it shut down our machine shop | for several hours....... | | I saw all the mess, and I watched the utility company splice the | wire......I also saw the old rebar stake with its little yellow cap | sticking out of the dirt pile. | | Its fucking gone.
Gosh PV, don't you get enough advice from the other groups? I can't even lurk here now, without worrying that you're gonna be mucking up the works <g>.
Our shop is on a street corner and a few years back we realized the the property stakes were gone. We share a border, though, with a church and a firehouse. I'm not gonna lose sleep over it ;-)
Tom
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Well Hiya Tom !!!

Thats PM......PV is somebody else, lives much nearer to where your at, IIRC....
As far as "mucking" goes...well...see cat.....see cat's tail....pull....
Repeat until bored, depending upon cat's reaction....

Actually, that land is all but useless to me anyway, only a small corner...maybe 1/8 acre tops and with their driveway running across it and transformer / phone pedestal etc opposite the drive......so considering giving them a quit claim to it if they would just survey the area to be given up.
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| | Well Hiya Tom !!! | | | | | | | Gosh PV, don't you get enough advice from the other groups? | | I can't even lurk here now, without worrying that you're gonna be | | mucking up the works <g>. | | | | Thats PM......PV is somebody else, lives much nearer to where your at, | IIRC....
Er... I did type that, didn't I? Damn, that explains the last crash I had on the lathe...
| | Our shop is on a street corner and a few years back we realized the | | the property stakes were gone. We share a border, though, with a | | church and a firehouse. I'm not gonna lose sleep over it ;-) | | | | Actually, that land is all but useless to me anyway, only a small | corner...maybe 1/8 acre tops and with their driveway running across | it and transformer / phone pedestal etc opposite the drive......so | considering giving them a quit claim to it if they would just survey | the area to be given up.
I've been lurking here for a while on and off and missed the original posts. Sounds like you had an interesting day back then <g>.
Tom
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