Legal Services For Any Issue Life Sends Your Way

  1. Home
  2.  – 
  3. Eminent Domain
  4.  – When is an offer for an eminent domain purchase actually reasonable?

When is an offer for an eminent domain purchase actually reasonable?

On Behalf of | Apr 30, 2024 | Eminent Domain

For some people, becoming a homeowner is the product of years of hard work. For others, the land or home where they live could be part of a legacy from a family member. Regardless of how someone acquires real property, they probably expect to enjoy ownership of that property until they die or decide to sell it to someone else.

Unfortunately, some people lose control over real estate holdings due to government action rather than economic choices. In Montana, local authorities can attempt to acquire real property for projects that benefit the public good under eminent domain laws. Eminent domain proceedings can involve a voluntary sale if a property owner accepts an offer or a forced sale through condemnation if a property owner refuses to sell. Reviewing an offer related to an eminent domain project is important for someone deciding how to respond.

How can a Montana property owner determine if an offer is actually reasonable?

Homeowners may need a professional valuation

There are multiple different real estate professionals who can potentially assist with the process of establishing the fair market value for real property. Both appraisers and licensed real estate agents can help people accurately estimate the value of a home, a parcel of agricultural land or a commercial property.

There are many variables that affect home value that condemning authorities may not be aware of at the time that they make their offer. They may not know about certain features that make one parcel of land more valuable than others nearby. There may not be any official records of substantial improvements made to the property that could help it command a premium price on the open market.

Developers often try to balance the need to offer fair compensation with the desire to limit project costs. Property owners need to be ready to assert their rights by taking necessary legal action if the amount offered for a property is inappropriately low.

Ignoring an eminent domain matter can be as dangerous as simply accepting the first offer made for the purchase of a property. Property owners who understand the importance of a proactive response can potentially challenge an unfair offer made as part of an eminent domain project.