Implying Intent to Run
For a covenant to run with land, at law or in equity, the original parties must have intended the covenant to run. Not only may a common plan imply the existence of covenants, but it also may imply the intent for covenants, express or implied, to run with land.
An express covenant doesn’t always state the parties’ intent for the benefit and burden to run with the relevant land. And, of course, an implied covenant doesn’t state such intent, because it states nothing. In either case, the existence of a common plan may prove intent for the benefit and the burden to run.
The existence of a common plan indicates that the covenant was intended to restrict the use of the land, regardless of who owns it. The original parties create a common plan with uniform covenants in order to create and preserve a neighborhood of a certain character.
If the covenant only bound the original burdened party, the covenants obviously wouldn’t accomplish the purpose of the common plan. So the existence of a common plan implies that the original parties intended the burden to run with each lot.
Likewise, the common plan implies that the original parties intended the benefit to run with each lot in the subdivision, even if the parties didn’t say so expressly. The idea of a common plan is that every lot will be burdened for the benefit of all the other lots — the benefit and burden are reciprocal.
So the existence of a common plan implies that the original parties intended all the lots to be benefited. It also implies that the benefit would run with the lots, rather than being personal to the original buyers, because the purpose of the covenants is to maintain a neighborhood of a certain character.