About one in 10 properties in South Australia contain an easement. An easement is a section of land on your property which gives someone else a legal and specific right to use or access that area of land, even though they are not the owner. Easements often include shared driveways, rights to park a vehicle, or the right for utility providers like SA Water, or councils, to have pipes, drains, and cables on private land, and include the right to repair or replace these services.
Most of the time your easement will contain water or wastewater. However, some easements may be reserved for future pipework or may contain pipes that are no longer in use.
How we use easements
Where possible, we will always have our water and sewer mains located underground on roads and public land. However in some situations, such as the slope of land, we can provide a better service to our customers if they are placed on private property. If we don’t do this, we will always try to place these services close to the boundaries to reduce the impact to the property owner.
Easements may be for a range of purposes including:
- water supply
- electricity supply
- right of way
- cathodic protection
- a combination of the above
How to identify an easement
Easements are not physically marked, like boundaries are with fences.
When buying property, you should legally be given a 'Register Search' and 'Form 1' which will have details on any easements. The SA Land Titles Office keeps an electronic copy of all land in the state and this includes details of easements.
If you aren't sure whether your property contains an easement, you can check the certificate of title. For more information on how to do this, visit sa.gov.au.
Removal of an easement
You are able to speak to us about any unused easements. Please note that fees are applicable for this investigation. To begin the process, please call us on 1300 650 950 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Building over an easement
Unless there is an issue, we will not need to access any easements on your property. However if something does go wrong, we may need to access them very quickly. Therefore, solid structures, such as walls, sheds or pergolas, must not be built on easements. Flowers, plants, and certain trees are fine. Our brochure on easements, will be able to help.
If you have an easement on your land and you have questions, we’re here to help. Please call us on 1300 729 283 or email email@example.com to find out more information.
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