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In real estate, a change in a property's value caused by a lessee or another person who has possession but no ownership rights. Waste usually results in a reduction in the property value, for which the owner ordinarily is entitled compensation. Waste may be positive or negative; positive waste results from the possessor's act, while negative waste results from his/her omission. An example of the former is destroying the floor with a sledge hammer, while an example of the latter is neglecting a termite infestation for so long that the floor collapses.


An abusive or destructive use of property by someone who is entitled to possession but who does not have complete ownership rights, such as a tenant, mortgage borrower, or a joint owner.Waste is more than normal wear and tear and implies neglect or misconduct. Contrast with trespass, which is damage by one who is not entitled to possession.There are three types of waste:

1. Voluntary waste (also called affirmative waste) is an intentional change to property resulting in damage to the property.

2. Permissive waste (also called negligent waste) is a failure to maintain property, so that it deteriorates in value.

3. Ameliorative waste occurs when the changes increase the value of the property. In some jurisdictions, a court will still award damages because the owner is entitled to have its property remain in the same condition, without being subjected to others' opinions regarding whether it was improved or not. Other jurisdictions refuse to allow damages, finding that the owner has been benefited by the actions.

References in periodicals archive ?
While miners a century ago laid waste to their surroundings with heedless brutality, they, in turn, could not have imagined the massive scale of mining operations in the 1990s.
Soon, since there are no heirs to the throne, the country falls into civil war and is laid waste.
9, Yolanda laid waste to a total of 9,857 metric tons (MT) of rice, corn and high-value crops on some 5,500 hectares of farmland.
But they seem to forget Germany started a bloody war that laid waste to Europe.
The explosion left a giant crater and laid waste to dozens of 1960s-era homes in the hills overlooking San Francisco Bay.
IF you missed ITV's Sunday night show in which Michael Ball, Craig David and Pixie Lott laid waste to songs from cartoons, don't watch the repeat.
I am reminded of a silly press report 50 years ago - "The whole area was laid waste by an explosion and typewriters were knocked off tables".
Kicking off with the skull-crushing Oroborus, Gojira laid waste to the venue with 75 minutes of aural evisceration.
This way, some of the financial grief still felt in many mining towns and villages laid waste by Thatcher would be temporarily alleviated.
About 50,000 people are expected to gather in the city's Peace Park to commemorate the day American planes laid waste to Hiroshima.