Strom v. Arcorace, 30132.

Decision Date01 April 1947
Docket Number30132.
Citation178 P.2d 959,27 Wn.2d 478
PartiesSTROM et al. v. ARCORACE et al.
CourtWashington Supreme Court

Department 1

Rehearing Denied May 16, 1947.

Suit by Iven J. Strom and Carrie M. Strom, his wife, against Felix Arcorace and Ruth E. Arcorace, his wife, to establish the true boundary line between plaintiffs' and defendants' adjacent lots, wherein defendants cross-complaint to quiet title to a narrow strip of land in controversy. From judgment dismissing plaintiff's complaint, plaintiffs appeal.

Judgment affirmed.

Appeal from Superior Court, King County; James B. Kinne, judge.

Christ D. Lillions, of Seattle, for appellants.

Elliott & Lee, of Seattle, for respondents.

ABEL Justice.

This is a dispute concerning the location of the boundary line between two lots in the city of Seattle. For convenience, we will refer to the lot now owned by defendants as lot A and the one owned by plaintiffs as lot B. Both of these lots were owned by a common grantor from prior to 1890 until a few years Before this controversy arose. This common grantor built a house on lot A, about the year 1890; it stands there today. Some time prior to 1919, the same owner of both lots built a house on lot B. About 1920 he dug a basement under the house on lot A, and put concrete steps and an entrance way to the basement on the side of the house between lots A and B. He also constructed a porch over this entrance way and placed a fence around lots A and B. The fence between lots A and B was a few inches over from the concrete steps and porch.

Plaintiffs resided in the neighborhood of these lots for approximately six months prior to the time they purchased lot B in June 1941. Their contract and deed described the property as 'Lot Four (4) Block One (1), Olive Addition to the City of Seattle, Washington, (which property is also known and designated as No. 726-24th Avenue South in said City)'. At the time plaintiffs purchased, there was a fence completely surrounding this lot B. Subsequently, plaintiffs found that, according to the plat on file in the auditor's office, their lot should be 41.5 feet wide, and they discussed this with the common grantor, who was still residing on lot A. They were told if there was a mistake in the fence, it was on the other side. After plaintiffs had found that therir lot was 1 1/2 or 2 feet narrower than the plat called for, they rebuilt the front part of the fence between the two lots A and B from the street to a point back of the house on lot A. This fence was placed in exactly the same position as the old fence. Subsequently, the common grantor, or his estate, sold lot A and the vendee in that deed sold to defendants who went in to immediate possession.

After defendants acquired title to lot A and went into possession this controversy arose, plaintiffs claiming that according to the recorded plat the true line between the lots was over 1 1/2 to 2 feet from the fence on lot A. This would place the true line so that it would go through the concrete steps and entrance way and cut off defendants' entrance to their basement. Plaintiffs brought suit to establish the true boundary line between their lots under Rem.Rev.Stat. § 947 et seq. The defendants, by their cross-complaint, sought to quiet title in them to the strip of land 1 1/2 to 2 feet wide between their house and the fence.

The trial court dismissed plaintiffs' complaint and established the fence as the dividing line and common boundary between the lots.

Plaintiffs appealed and made three assignments of error: (1) that the court erred in departing from the legal description contained in his deed and in so modifying the dimensions of his lot as to contradict both the deed and plat on record (2) that the court erred in not finding that a boundary dispute existed; (3) that the court erred in finding that the fence was the dividing line. We will discuss the three assignments together.

In the first place, there has been some discussion regarding the effect of appellant's contract and deed describing the lot and then adding '(which property is also known and designated as No. 726-24th Avenue South in said City)'. We will not discuss the effect of these words, as they cannot possibly be of any benefit to appellant and the law in this state is so well settled regarding the establishment of a boundary by a common grantor that we do not need to discuss the legal effect of this addition to the contract and deed.

Appellant claims...

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19 cases
  • Pendergrast v. Matichuk
    • United States
    • Washington Supreme Court
    • September 15, 2016
    ...knowledge and recognition of the original grantee. See, e.g., Thompson , 28 Wash.2d at 592–93, 183 P.2d 785 ; Strom v. Arcorace 27 Wash.2d 478, 481–82, 178 P.2d 959 (1947) ; Winans, 35 Wash.App. at 241–42, 666 P.2d 908.¶16 Third, Matichuk argues that the courts below erred by considering th......
  • Vance v. Massey, No. 32608-6-II (WA 2/14/2006)
    • United States
    • Washington Supreme Court
    • February 14, 2006
    ...there must be a meeting of the minds regarding the new boundary and the land must be sold with reference to it. Strom v. Arcorace, 27 Wn.2d 478, 481, 178 P.2d 959 (1947). A formal agreement is not, however, necessary. Thompson, 28 Wn.2d at 592. The agreement element can be demonstrated by t......
  • Chandler v. Kuhlman
    • United States
    • Washington Court of Appeals
    • January 4, 2011
    ...deed, immediately binding as to the grantee. See Clausing v. Kassner, 60 Wn.2d 12, 15, 371 P.2d 633 (1962); Martin, 44 Wn.2d at 790; Strom, 27 Wn.2d at 481; Levien, 79 at 302. Subsequent purchasers are bound to the grantor's line if they purchase the property with actual or inquiry notice t......
  • Chandler v. Kuhlman
    • United States
    • Washington Court of Appeals
    • January 4, 2011
    ...such line, and that there was a meeting of minds as to the identical tract of land to be transferred by the sale." Strom v. Arcorace, 27 Wn.2d 478, 481, 178 P.2d 959 (1947) (quoting 11 C.J.S. Boundaries § 77 at 651 (1938)). The common grantor doctrine is premised on a special relationship b......
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