property ownership

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property ownership

We purchased a home from a builder. The purchase was vacant land and the home is to be built on the property. There was a rather large bolder in the back left corner of the lot that my wife wanted to incorporate with the landscape in the front yard. We are getting push back from Pulte saying that the rock was not part of the purchase. We are under the impression that anything that was on the lot when we bought it would be ours. Is the rock ours or not?

Asked on July 18, 2018 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Any large rock which appears to be a "fixture"--not readily removable or movable from the land without the use of equipment--would be included with the purchase unless specifically exclude in the contract of sale. Anything which a person could readily pick up him/herself, so that even though it is a rock, it is less part of the landscape and more a decoration (equivalent to a potted plant or garden gnome) would not be included. The practical issue is, if they remove the rock, you'd need to sue to get it back--whether it is worth a lawsuit (or it would be better to just get a new rock from a landscapping center or quarry) is an open issue.


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