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Define Accession in Real Estate


"Accession" is a term in real estate that means when something is added to a property, either naturally or by people, it becomes part of the property. This means the property owner now owns the added thing too, without having to do anything extra.


Imagine you own a piece of land near a river. Over time, the river deposits soil along the edge of your land, making it bigger. According to the rule of accession, this extra land now belongs to you, just because it's connected to your original property.

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A few more aspects related to accession in real estate that you should be aware of:

Natural Accession: Natural accession occurs when changes to a property happen due to natural causes, such as the gradual buildup of soil along a riverbank (called "accretion") or the formation of new land through volcanic activity. In these cases, the new land or soil that is added to a property becomes part of that property and belongs to the owner.

Artificial Accession: Artificial accession refers to changes made to a property by human actions, such as constructing a building or planting trees. As with natural accession, any improvements or additions made to a property become part of that property and belong to the owner.

Fixtures: Accession plays a role in determining whether an item is considered a fixture, which is a piece of personal property that has been attached to real property in such a way that it becomes part of the real property. Fixtures cannot be removed by a tenant or seller without the permission of the property owner.

Ownership Disputes: Accession can sometimes lead to ownership disputes, especially when it involves improvements made by one party that inadvertently extend onto another party's property. In such cases, it is essential to consult with legal professionals to resolve the dispute and ensure that property rights are upheld.

Property Valuation: Real estate appraisers need to consider the principle of accession when determining the value of a property, as any improvements or additions made to the property can impact its overall worth.

As you study for your real estate agent or appraiser exam, it's essential to understand the concept of accession and its implications for property ownership, disputes, and valuations. Familiarize yourself with the different types of accession and related legal principles to provide accurate information and guidance to your clients.
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In the land of homes and yards, a term you'll need to see,
Accession is the name, for property naturally.

When nature adds a gift, or people do the same,
The property it joins, and the owner gets to claim.

A land beside a river, with soil it starts to grow,
The owner gains more land, as the river's waters flow.

The rule of Accession states, when something new attaches,
The owner gets the prize, no need for strings or catches.

So when you study real estate, and terms begin to whirl,
Remember Accession, as new pieces join and twirl!

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