How to Handle Squatters on Your Property

Squatter Couple

Dealing with informal settlers can be tricky. You may be surprised to know that squatting in a non-residential building or land is not considered a crime in itself.

If someone is squatting on your property, a forceful eviction is not the answer. Rather, you should do the following:

Get a Certified Bailiff

When dealing with squatters, force should not be your first option. Do this the wrong way, and you may be facing charges yourself. The better approach is to prove that you own the property and to have an eviction notice served to the squatters, which they need to follow in the next 24 hours. A bailiff company can enforce the repossession order on your behalf.

Check for Property Damage

While it is not a crime to squat in certain areas, it is a crime to damage the property. Inspect for damages that you can charge against the squatters, as this will make it easier to have them out of your land or property. Any damages weaken any claims they may have to own the property if they have been squatting in it for over ten years. Some informal settlers have won with this kind of claim because they have proven that they had helped improve the property.

There is no denying that squatting should be handled as soon as possible, but you may need to step back and let the authorities take care of it. Otherwise, you could be charged yourself or face greater damage to your property.