What is an abstract of title and how does it work?

An abstract of title is summary of all transactions of interest in the title/ownership of the property, including deeds, liens, estate conveyances, etc.

How does Universal help with access to the property?

Access is the right to enter a property from a different parcel owned by another party, including government properties, and roadways, etc. Universal negotiates on your behalf with any outside parties to ensure legal access throughout the project, including offering construction support.

How are appraisals conducted?

Our experts typically use three approaches to assessing value and reconcile the findings to the particular property. They include: Market Data, Cost, and Income, choosing the most relevant to the project. 

What happens if the property owner won’t sell?

Often the rule of Eminent Domain applies, which allows the Condemning Authority to acquire a property for the public good when negotiations with the owner fail. The courts then determine the Just Compensation for that party, paying them that amount and granting the Certificate of Title to the new owners.  

Can property be donated?

Absolutely, property can be transferred from a private owner to a public entity at no cost by dedication or donation. In accordance with the local laws, the private owner can relinquish rights to the property for an agency to use in the public interest.

What is an easement?

An easement is the right to use part of a property for a specific purpose. This does not grant ownership—just the intended use of a parcel of land.

What is encroachment?

When a real estate addition or property fixture intrudes without permission onto another party’s property.

What are feasibility studies and how does Universal conduct them?

At the onset of a project, our industry professionals dive in to see if it’s viable environmentally, politically, legally, and economically. 

What does ingress/egress mean?

Just like access, ingress is the right to enter a property and egress is to depart.

What if I need to relocate?

Universal offers relocation assistance to persons and businesses displaced by a public agency project. We help minimize the inconvenience and costs that come with a big move, helping guide clients to parcels comparable to their current location. 

How does Universal support clients with condemnation efforts?

Our team provides right of way condemnation support by giving advisory assistance to a lawyer or legal team pursing litigation. 

How can I keep track of my project’s progress and necessary documents?

Not only does our right of way project management stay on top of every step in the right of way process—but our online database management systems can scale with your project, giving you access to all the moving pieces you need.