Should a Purchaser Have Actual Knowledge of An Unrecorded Land Use Restriction

In Emrick v. Multicon Builders, Inc. (1991), 57 Ohio St. 3d 107, 566 N.E.2d 1189, the Ohio Supreme Court affirmed Spring Lake, Ltd., holding "Knowledge that a restriction applies to some lots in a tract does not constitute actual knowledge that those same restrictions apply to other lots within the same tract." Thus, an unrecorded land use restriction is not enforceable against a bona fide purchaser for value unless the purchaser has actual knowledge of the restriction. The Court observed that "Although actual knowledge in some instances may be inferred, it may not be imputed to the purchaser on the basis of mere familiarity with the land use restriction or on the basis of awareness of the bare existence of the document containing the restrictions."