Real Estate Attorney - Property Boundary Issue

We have owned our house in Oakland for about 20 years and before that rented it for 5.  When we rented it it came with the garage which is behind a front property.  The front property was sold without the garage 2x.  Current owners of the front property are going to sell shortly and we found out the garage is listed within the property line of the front property.  We discovered this years ago and the front property owners know about it but never "claimed the garage" . We are concerned that it might come up when they sell and need to know our options to keep the garage and land it is on as ours. 

Any advice and real estate attorney recommendations?

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I have used Thomas Eastridge. He used to be in Oakland, I think he's moved to El Cerrito. I found him knowledgable and down to earth.

510-682-7111. info [at]

I don’t have a real estate agent recommendation but when it comes to boundary disputes, what you need is to get a land survey done. These surveys are not cheap and it can take a while to get someone out to do the work. So get a surveyor ASAP. 

Seems like you just need to look on the county assessors map to figure it out, or hire a surveryor to map it out - an attorney isn't really necessary at this point. Good luck!

No need to hire an attorney at this time.  You have a well easement easement for the garage.  The realtor listing the property and the current home owner legally must be disclosing this to potential buyers.  Are you on good terms with the seller?  If so, you should have them tell the listing agent.  If not, I would put up a sign saying garage has an easement so potential buyers know about the easement before they buy.  (This will give you the best legal standing.)  The problem with this is the agent and your neighbors won't like what you are doing as it will deter buyers.  You have the sellers over a barrel so to speak right now.  If you don't want to spend $50k in lawyers fees, I would put up the sign. This will shift the burden from you to them.  If they were nice and smart they would hire the attorney and do a lot line adjustment - And the problem is solved.    If you do not put up a sign to notify sellers then you are effectively giving up your easement and this could get very costly for you in the future.

Hope this helps

You may have what is known as a "prescriptive easement" over the garage, which an attorney can help you evaluate.  If the front property owners are cooperative, there are also several ways of setting up a written agreement giving you the right to continue to use the garage even after they sell.  But you do need professional legal advice based on your particular situation.