Eminent domain is one of the most controversial policies that the government can use. The federal, state, and local governments that have jurisdiction over you can essentially force you to sell your real estate to them so that they can use the land for a project. In Florida, it is important for you to know what rights you have when eminent domain comes knocking at the door.
Can I negotiate an eminent domain offer?
The short answer is yes. In eminent domain, the government will forcibly buy property from you, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t negotiate the price. They will send an inspector to determine and assess the market value of the home and land. Within 60 days, they will send you an offer letter with how much they are willing to buy the house for and an explanation of the value. Then you have the opportunity to negotiate on that price.
The government can still force the sale in court if you can’t agree on a price, so there is a limit to how much you can negotiate. Don’t wait too long, or you will end up fighting an eminent domain lawsuit. Negotiations can include a higher price plus extras, like a fee to support moving costs for you.
Eminent domain sounds scary, but you do have some freedom and leeway to get a better deal than the initial offer. Remember, government agencies work on a budget, so you can try to extract some more money or better terms and conditions if you push back when they come to you with an eminent domain offer.