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Maximizing Compensation for Temporary Construction Easements (TCEs) in Florida
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Maximizing Compensation for Temporary Construction Easements (TCEs) in Florida

October 17, 2023 Florida Eminent Domain Law Blog, Real Estate Development, Sales and Leasing Industry Legal Blog

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Temporary Construction Easements (TCEs) are integral aspects of eminent domain construction projects throughout Florida. Property owners facing the taking and negotiation of a TCE must navigate a complex landscape to ensure they receive full compensation. In this article, we will:

  • Discuss approaching the valuation of a TCE.
  • Shed light on why TCEs are crucial for property owners.
  • Identify the experts needed to assist in valuing and negotiating compensation for these easements.

 Person counting money at desk over planner

Understanding Temporary Construction Easements (TCEs)

Before we dive into valuation, let’s revisit the basics:

  1. What is a TCE?: A Temporary Construction Easement (TCE) is a legal agreement. It grants a government entity or contractor temporary access to a portion of private property for construction purposes. It’s a permit to set foot on your land for a defined period.
  2. Why are TCEs important?: TCEs are vital because they impact property owners directly. Understanding the value of a TCE and negotiating full compensation ensures that property owners are not shortchanged during eminent domain proceedings.

The Significance of TCE Valuation

Valuing a TCE is a multi-faceted process, and it’s crucial for several reasons:

  1. Fair Compensation: Property owners have the right to receive just compensation for granting a TCE. Proper valuation ensures that property owners are adequately compensated for the temporary loss of their property rights.
  2. Legal Requirement: Valuation is often a mandatory step in eminent domain cases. Both property owners and government entities must agree on a fair value before moving forward.
  3. Protecting Property Rights: Property owners must ensure that the terms of the TCE and compensation accurately reflect the impact of the easement on their property. Valuation helps protect these property rights.

The Experts You Need

Valuing a TCE isn’t a DIY project. To ensure a fair outcome, property owners often require assistance from various experts:

  1. Legal Counsel: An attorney specializing in eminent domain is critical to assembling a team of experts in various disciplines. The team will adequately advise you of your property value and negotiate full compensation.
  2. Real Estate Appraiser: A certified appraiser specializes in determining the fair market value of property. They assess how the TCE affects property value. This assessment considers factors such as location, size, and potential disruption.
  3. Eminent Domain Attorney: An attorney experienced in eminent domain cases is essential. They help property owners understand their rights, negotiate terms, and ensure compliance with all legal requirements.
  4. Engineer or Surveyor: Depending on the nature of the TCE, an engineer or surveyor may be necessary to assess the impact on the property, including any changes to land grading, drainage, or utilities.
  5. Accountant or Financial Expert: In some cases, financial experts can assist in assessing the financial impact of a TCE, including potential business losses or additional expenses incurred.

TCE Valuation Process – Methods and Formulas

A real estate appraiser evaluates the property’s value, considering market conditions, comparable sales, and the TCE’s impact. When it comes to appraising or valuing a TCE, property owners and experts often employ two primary methods. These methods are crucial in determining the compensation that should be awarded for granting a TCE. To understand the two commonly used valuation approaches, it’s important to get a grasp on how they work and their significance in the TCE valuation process.

Method 1: Rent-Based Formula

The first method involves applying a rent-based formula. This formula consists of multiplying the total area required for the TCE, typically measured in square feet, by the fair market rental rate of the property. This calculation also takes into account the time period of the TCE’s duration, whether it’s measured in months or years.

This method is based on the premise that property owners should be compensated for the temporary use of their land as if it were rented out during the TCE period. The fair market rental rate reflects what a willing tenant would pay for a property of similar nature and location.

Method 2: Rate of Return Formula

The second commonly used method employs a rate of return formula. In this approach, the area needed for the TCE, measured in square feet, is multiplied by the property’s market-based rate of return. This formula aims to compensate property owners for the potential income they could have earned from their property during the TCE period.

The rate of return is determined by assessing factors such as the property’s historical income, market conditions, and the expected return on investment. This method recognizes that property owners should be compensated not only for the property’s rental value but also for the income they might have generated from the property if it were not subject to the TCE.


Valuing a Temporary Construction Easement (TCE) is a critical step in protecting the rights of property owners to ensure they receive full compensation for their temporary loss of property use. Engaging experts, such as real estate appraisers, eminent domain attorneys, engineers, and financial experts, is essential in navigating this complex process. With proper valuation, property owners can safeguard their interests and ensure that their properties are valued accurately within the realm of eminent domain in Florida.

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