Unruly storm water detention basin...

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Latest post Thu, Jul 18 2013 5:43 PM by Drew. 4 replies.
  • Mon, Jul 15 2013 10:53 AM

    • ageiser
      Consumer
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    • Joined on Mon, Jul 15 2013
    • OH
    • Posts 1

    Unruly storm water detention basin...

     

    Hello,

    I'm looking for some advice on what my options & rights are in a matter concerning a storm water detention basin.

    Last July we bought a .5 acre lot through a home builder fully understanding that our lot backed up into a storm water detention basin. During my investigation of the lot I visited frequently after large rains to examine the amount of water in the basin as well as the quality of the soil a few days after a rain. Seeing no major issues we moved forward with our purchase.

     

    Problem #1 - the builder & county had final say on the building's setback which left us with a home with no back yard as the back of the house comes very close to the easement, meaning our yard drops off at a server angle (I don't think we have anything here, it's just a point of contention)

    Problem #2 - there remains standing water which attracts wildlife & insects, I have talked to the developer and they are planning to re-grade the easement to alleviate this (they plan to do this in August)

     

    Problem #3 - Now that the builder has nearly completed phase 1 of the subdivision they have 'cut' a new street for the second phase. At the same time another developer is building another subdivision directly south of us in which the storm water drainage system connects into the drainage system that is ultimately retained in our basin. Now the rain regularly floods the basin... a few times to the point of which the water breaches way past the easement line and comes very close to my neighbors & our home (The easement is approx. 12' deep and 20' at the widest). With the subdivision to include a 3rd phase we have great concerns about the runoff, not to mention safety issues of having such a deep detention area that fills up regularly.  

     

    At this point I feel like we were mislead by the builder to purchase the lot and are now stuck owning land that is completely unusable and nearly unmaintainable. What rights do I have as a homeowner?

    Sorry this was so long :)

    Thanks for any advice!

    Drew

     

     

  • Mon, Jul 15 2013 11:25 AM In reply to

    • DPH
      Consumer
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Mon, Oct 8 2001
    • TX
    • Posts 7,875

    Re: Unruly storm water detention basin...

    ageiser:
    we bought a .5 acre lot through a home builder fully understanding that our lot backed up into a storm water detention basin.

    The operative words in this statement are "fully understanding".  It doesn't sound as if you were confused so not sure what you think you can do about the basin.

    ageiser:
    Problem #1

    You obviously knew this before your house was constructed, so I think you're right.  Nothing there.  It's a small lot.

    ageiser:
    Problem #2

    Nothing really wrong or illegal with wildlife and insects, so not sure what you might be thinking.  What is the regrading supposed to accomplish and what easement are you referring to in this statement?  Are you referring to the detention pond as easement?  Traditionally an easement is a portion of your property set aside for utilities, etc.  A detention pond, in my mind, is something totally different and you have no "interest" ownershipwise in it.

    ageiser:
    Problem #3
     

    Have you contacted the water district or the county or whoever regualted detention ponds in your area?  Make a run down to the county courthouse and snoop around the plat maps for your area.  You might just find that the pond in question is all that was needed or you might find out that someone is cutting corners.  Talk to the county engineer and see what they have to say. 

    ageiser:
    I feel like we were mislead by the builder

    Go back and reread your second sentence.

    ageiser:
    What rights do I have as a homeowner?
     

    You have the right to question whether or not the developer(s) are following the guidelines on water detention ponds or the right to consult with a real estate attorney to try and stop the other developers from dumping more water into the existing pond.

     

     

    "Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience."  -  Mark Twain

     

  • Mon, Jul 15 2013 11:28 AM In reply to

    Re: Unruly storm water detention basin...

    Consult an attorney but I think you've got nowhere to go with this.

     

    • The right of the people 
    • to keep and bear arms,
    • shall not be infringed.
  • Wed, Jul 17 2013 10:32 AM In reply to

    • Drew
      Consumer
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    • Joined on Thu, Mar 30 2000
    • PA
    • Posts 51,417

    Re: Unruly storm water detention basin...

    I think you may be stuck...but dues off all the paper work and review it with a very seasoned RE lawyer as to litigation over easement issues.

    I suspect the easement is very broadly written to allow for water retention from a variety of sources ..developer could invite / sell access to others ....Check what the local approved plans supposedly allow.

    Word to wise..unless there a public sewers....check the retention waters for septic runoff...that can be a daunting and political problem to address.



  • Thu, Jul 18 2013 5:43 PM In reply to

    • Drew
      Consumer
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Mar 30 2000
    • PA
    • Posts 51,417

    Re: Unruly storm water detention basin...

    Also while you are at it sort outnwhomis responsible to maintain the detention pond...it may not be a fun question to address if the builder is long gone and there are big problems to address.

    And Id be nervous about other ponds which dump into this one..are they all part of proper design and approvals...?



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