Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

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neglogic
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Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by neglogic » Mon Apr 22, 2019 7:19 pm

Looking for advice on this situation.

Neighbor installed a new sump pump outlet on his property, the water should be going into a new storm drain installed on an adjacent property. Unfortunately, the adjacent site is under construction and silt fences are blocking this flow of water and pushing it onto my property. Removal of the silt fences should solve the problem, but there is a concern that the silt fences may be replaced with a permanent fence that would continue to impede the flow of water the new storm drain.

His alternate solution is to run his sump pump output underground into an existing storm drain on my property. He is willing to pay for the work, that's not the issue.

If I decide to accept this solution, then how do we formalize this arrangement? Do I need to give him an easement onto my property for this? Is there anything else I should be concerned about?

Any thoughts or comments appreciated. Thanks.

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by LadyGeek » Mon Apr 22, 2019 7:52 pm

This thread is now in the Personal Finance (Not Investing) forum (contractual arrangement).
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by 123 » Mon Apr 22, 2019 8:31 pm

You likely would need to give him a formal recorded easement depending on the requirements in your state. You need to determine the price for the easement since it will impact the price, marketability, and potential use of your property for all eternity. If there are any loans on your property you need to check if the loan documents would permit you to give an easement. Some mortgage holders might require that any proceeds from an easement be applied to pay down the loan balance.
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shunkman
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by shunkman » Mon Apr 22, 2019 9:01 pm

Do you consider this neighbor to be a GOOD friend? If not, I would tell him he needs to find another solution that does not impact your property.

miamivice
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by miamivice » Mon Apr 22, 2019 9:04 pm

I am not sure that it is illegal to discharge sump pump flow onto your property. I would consult with a real estate attorney in your state to determine what your options are.

You'll get a lot of responses here, most from people guessing and definitely not familiar with the law in your state.

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by donall » Mon Apr 22, 2019 9:08 pm

Your neighbor should Check with your local authorities such as the building or planning departments. In our area, fences cannot impede the natural flow of water. Your neighbor should be working with the local authorities to solve his problem.

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by Sandtrap » Mon Apr 22, 2019 9:45 pm

neglogic wrote:
Mon Apr 22, 2019 7:19 pm
Looking for advice on this situation.

Neighbor installed a new sump pump outlet on his property, the water should be going into a new storm drain installed on an adjacent property. Unfortunately, the adjacent site is under construction and silt fences are blocking this flow of water and pushing it onto my property. Removal of the silt fences should solve the problem, but there is a concern that the silt fences may be replaced with a permanent fence that would continue to impede the flow of water the new storm drain.

His alternate solution is to run his sump pump output underground into an existing storm drain on my property. He is willing to pay for the work, that's not the issue.

If I decide to accept this solution, then how do we formalize this arrangement? Do I need to give him an easement onto my property for this? Is there anything else I should be concerned about?

Any thoughts or comments appreciated. Thanks.
Isn't the simplest legal way to do this within "code" to run his sump drain toward the "front" of his property to the street storm drain system? Thereby not involving any neighbor. What if all neighbors said "no". Then that would be his option?

As a retired R/E developer, I would not as there may be future repercussions as yet unknown. Don't if you don't have to.
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by suemarkp » Mon Apr 22, 2019 9:49 pm

Where do his gutter downspouts drain and why not put the sump water into them? What are the lot sizes here? Typically, you'd put water like this back into the ground if you can keep it from flowing back into where the sump pump is getting it from. In the old days, it would be a gravel pile buried somewhere in the yard, usually 30 to 50 feet from the house and ideally downhill.

But as others have said, you need to check your local surface and subsurface water rules.
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crswvc
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Re: Neighbors

Post by crswvc » Mon Apr 22, 2019 10:28 pm

Have him dump the water into a collection tank (possibly underground) that filters the water and feeds:
* grey water uses such as the toilets, grass etc
* a distiller for rest of the house

If extra water is available then bottle it up and sell it
Last edited by crswvc on Mon Apr 22, 2019 11:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by mw1739 » Mon Apr 22, 2019 10:32 pm

I worked with my neighbor to run a drainage pipe to the storm sewer across the back edge of his property. All it took was my promise to restore the grass and a handshake. The city and the contractor installing it said I was within my right to terminate the pipe at the edge of my property, thereby flooding the corner of my neighbors yard.

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by gd » Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:18 am

Agree specific answers are GIGO, since you don't disclose your location. But it's your neighbor who *needs* an easement from you for his protection and should be worrying about all this. For you it'll be a black mark and constraint against the free use of your property; you might argue you're better off without it so you can rip out the thing if you choose to. It's up to him to persuade you to grant an easement.

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by samsoes » Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:33 am

gd wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:18 am
Agree specific answers are GIGO, since you don't disclose your location. But it's your neighbor who *needs* an easement from you for his protection and should be worrying about all this. For you it'll be a black mark and constraint against the free use of your property; you might argue you're better off without it so you can rip out the thing if you choose to. It's up to him to persuade you to grant an easement.
What does GIGO mean?
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by RickBoglehead » Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:40 am

samsoes wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:33 am
gd wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:18 am
Agree specific answers are GIGO, since you don't disclose your location. But it's your neighbor who *needs* an easement from you for his protection and should be worrying about all this. For you it'll be a black mark and constraint against the free use of your property; you might argue you're better off without it so you can rip out the thing if you choose to. It's up to him to persuade you to grant an easement.
What does GIGO mean?
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by RickBoglehead » Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:44 am

mw1739 wrote:
Mon Apr 22, 2019 10:32 pm
I worked with my neighbor to run a drainage pipe to the storm sewer across the back edge of his property. All it took was my promise to restore the grass and a handshake. The city and the contractor installing it said I was within my right to terminate the pipe at the edge of my property, thereby flooding the corner of my neighbors yard.
That's interesting.

My neighbor's yard is slightly uphill of mine. I am the second owner, the first owner lived here for 2 years. When we moved in, I noticed my side yard was always wet, and often had large areas of water. I determined two things. First, that my neighbor's rain spouts were dumping water uphill of me and causing an issue. Second, my neighbor's sump pump had been draining to their rear yard, and the builder came back and made it go to a drain on the side near me, which added to the problem.

I contacted the city, and they told me quite clearly that you cannot cause a problem on your neighbor's yard like I've described or you've explained you were told was ok. In my case, the township approached the builder and told them that they'd suggest the installation of underground pipes to a large french drain, with a gravel pit at the end. The builder rep's reply (large, large builder) was basically "you can't make me". The building department inspector's reply was "you have a new project that I have to approve". The french drain was put in, took 2 guys 2 days of manual digging that I kept a very close eye on. Water issue went away.
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by samsoes » Tue Apr 23, 2019 7:06 am

RickBoglehead wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:40 am
samsoes wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:33 am
gd wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:18 am
Agree specific answers are GIGO, since you don't disclose your location. But it's your neighbor who *needs* an easement from you for his protection and should be worrying about all this. For you it'll be a black mark and constraint against the free use of your property; you might argue you're better off without it so you can rip out the thing if you choose to. It's up to him to persuade you to grant an easement.
What does GIGO mean?
Garbage In, Garbage Out. Easily found via Google.
I don't the google much. Don't trust it.
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by fru-gal » Tue Apr 23, 2019 7:17 am

It does vary my locality. Two neighbors up the street drain their sump pumps into the street, and the water drains into my yard and also washed out another neighbor's gravel front area. It's now illegal to do that, but these people are grandfathered in and unresponsive. One in particular has a very large backyard that it would be easy to redirect the sump pump outflow to.

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by RickBoglehead » Tue Apr 23, 2019 7:30 am

fru-gal wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 7:17 am
It does vary my locality. Two neighbors up the street drain their sump pumps into the street, and the water drains into my yard and also washed out another neighbor's gravel front area. It's now illegal to do that, but these people are grandfathered in and unresponsive. One in particular has a very large backyard that it would be easy to redirect the sump pump outflow to.
Whether they are allowed to drain to the street or not, they're not allowed to drain into your yard or destroy a neighbor's property. Contact your city/township.
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by fru-gal » Tue Apr 23, 2019 7:30 am

RickBoglehead wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 7:30 am
fru-gal wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 7:17 am
It does vary my locality. Two neighbors up the street drain their sump pumps into the street, and the water drains into my yard and also washed out another neighbor's gravel front area. It's now illegal to do that, but these people are grandfathered in and unresponsive. One in particular has a very large backyard that it would be easy to redirect the sump pump outflow to.
Whether they are allowed to drain to the street or not, they're not allowed to drain into your yard or destroy a neighbor's property. Contact your city/township.
Done that, got nowhere.

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by GrowthSeeker » Tue Apr 23, 2019 7:35 am

Someone I know (not me) found an old drainage pipe coming onto his property from a neighbor. He cemented it closed.
Do not underestimate the magnitude of problems water can cause. All pipes fail, eventually. Then what do you have?

Sometimes, people make a big hole in their own yard, fill it with stones, and let the drainage water run into there (French drain).

neglogic wrote:
Mon Apr 22, 2019 7:19 pm
Neighbor installed a new sump pump outlet on his property, the water should be going into a new storm drain installed on an adjacent property. Unfortunately, the adjacent site is under construction and silt fences are blocking this flow of water and pushing it onto my property.
Did your neighbor have permission to put his water into the other neighbor's storm drain? (did he need permission?). But if that was the legitimate place for that water to go, it seems the contractor working on that property, and owner of that property are responsible for the problem.

It seems like nobody knows nuthin', as the saying goes.(speaking for myself)
Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they're NOT out to get you.

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neglogic
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by neglogic » Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:00 am

I'm located in Fairfax County, Virginia.

Thanks for the helpful responses so far, much to think about.

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neglogic
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by neglogic » Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:07 am

New wrinkle: It turns out my neighbor placed his sump pump output on the adjacent property under construction, so it will definitely need to move.

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by Lynette » Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:16 am

As others have mentioned be extremely careful as water can cause a great deal of damage. I live in an older area with drainage problems. I had water in my basement several times. This was largely caused by building a large house next door - too much concrete - no place to drain. I now have an impressive series of catch drains that eventually flow into the city sewer on my property. My plumber tells me this is no longer allowed and the water would have to drain into the sewer on the street - i.e. dig up the street. So far, drainage problems have cost me about $50,000. My neighbor is always complaining about her neighbors causing the back of her yard to be wet. She asked the city to fix it and complained to the neighbors. No luck. I pay to fix the problems.

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by Sandtrap » Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:21 am

neglogic wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:07 am
New wrinkle: It turns out my neighbor placed his sump pump output on the adjacent property under construction, so it will definitely need to move.
It seems it would be much simpler and zero future repercussions to avoid the issue altogether.
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by Nowizard » Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:35 am

Generally, construction cannot impede the natural flow of water. If that is impeded by the silt fence, they may be required to remove it. If the natural flow is across your property, a decision about whether the sump pump water represents an engineering problem that requires redirecting or whether it can legally flow across your property would need to be determined. Another question is whether sump pump water is legally required to be directed to a local drain. If so, there are almost certainly regulations that determine how that is to occur. An easement affects your property value, as other have said and would be a last alternative. A temporary solution vetted with the code department locally would be my first choice.

Tim

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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by bertilak » Tue Apr 23, 2019 12:47 pm

Above someone asked about how good a friend your neighbor is. It makes no difference as he may sell to someone else next week.
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Re: Neighbors sump pump pipe on my property

Post by buccimane » Tue Apr 23, 2019 1:44 pm

bertilak wrote:
Tue Apr 23, 2019 12:47 pm
Above someone asked about how good a friend your neighbor is. It makes no difference as he may sell to someone else next week.
It does make some difference, as he may live there for the next 30 years.
A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still

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