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 Problems with fences

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Bub

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Registration date : 2007-12-15

PostSubject: Problems with fences   Wed Nov 04, 2009 7:31 pm

Has anyone had a problem with their neighbors fence?
How did you resolve the problem?
Our neighbor, whose house is about 15 feet from ours, installed a 6 foot cedar privacy fence in the side yard between our houses and a 4 foot decorative fence in the front yard. Unfortunately, she has a permit from the town and everything appears to be done by code. The fence blocks one window that directly faces her house, which is OK with us. Unfortunately it also blocks two other windows that are not OK. Our neighbor is also a recluse who doesn't answer the door and has an unlisted number.
The only thought I have is to survey the property line an hope that the fence is on our property.
Does any one have other ideas?
Thanks,
Bub
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kilted1
Great Scot!
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Age : 56
Location : North Georgia, USA
Registration date : 2009-01-11

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Wed Nov 04, 2009 10:02 pm

Find an entomologist who might enjoy doing termite studies Twisted Evil
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Bub

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Registration date : 2007-12-15

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Wed Nov 04, 2009 10:11 pm

Since our neighbor is a nut, I am actually looking for a hungry squirrel
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LL

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Location : KCMO
Registration date : 2007-12-29

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Wed Nov 04, 2009 10:31 pm

If there's a boundary line issue, don't let it ride. Get it measured and take action as soon as you can (if you are in the right) or you could literally lose a chunk of your yard:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adverse_possession
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ftrplt

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Age : 71
Location : Split between Raleigh, NC and OKC, OK
Registration date : 2007-12-15

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Thu Nov 05, 2009 1:30 am

What is it about the other two windows being blocked (assuming view here) that is not OK? This could/may have some bearing on whether you have a justifiable "beef" or not. FTRPLT
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Al in Canada

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Age : 72
Location : Blenheim, Ontario
Registration date : 2009-04-20

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Thu Nov 05, 2009 3:37 am

"Fence law" is one of the most complex areas of real estate and property law, and goes way back. People have been fighting over fences since they started building them, which covers a lot of time. Where i live the fence has to be inside, not on the property line, the "ugly" side has to face in, not out, in residential areas where there is a shared property line, the sharing neighbor may have to pay for a portion of the common fence, even if they do not want a fence (!). Fences have to conform to relevant by-laws as to height, materials, etc. Fences are not to built so that they prevent the "quiet enjoyment" of your property, i.e. I can't get in a snit and build a 20 foot high fence so that you can't get any sunlight, etc.

So you need to find out whether the fence is appropriately located, made correctly, and in all ways conforms to the applicable laws. Most areas have some sort of local authority for fence disputes and it may have an arcane name like "fence viewer" or it may be just be the jumbled in with the "by-law enforcement" dept.

you probably need to check also with a lawyer familiar with your area and the by=laws, which can be tricky, since the laws in the town are not necessarily the same as the adjacent town, and neither apply to the county. (fun eh?) If you can it is better to work something out with resorting to going to court, and definitely cheaper. Maybe you should try writing her, it may be that she is just scared, and given what is on the "news" she feels threatened and this is a security fence.
Six feet sounds fairly reasonable in my experience on fences. You aren't given to prowling around the house in your "altogether" with the curtains open, or anything else that might have prompted her building spree? (not an accusation, just a query) Recent new story a woman laid charges for indecent exposure on a fellow who was making his morning coffee in the nude, not knowing he could be seen from outside the house. Well NOW he KNOWS.

Good luck and hope you find a reasonable and acceptable solution.

Al (in Canada)
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HistoryMajor

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Age : 28
Location : Alberta, Canada
Registration date : 2009-01-11

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Thu Nov 05, 2009 5:04 pm

Yeah, it's friggen complex, best of luck sorting it out.

I think checking with a lawyer to see if there's anything you actually can do is probably the best bet...of course, consulting a lawyer costs money. But perhaps you know someone, or have a friend who knows someone who can inquire on your behalf. Even if you know someone in law/bylaw enforcement that could help you out.

From what I know, neighbours are asshats generally when it comes to dialogue regarding fences. I know people that have tried to get payment for a jointly built fence for years and haven't succeeded.

Maybe if this person is a recluse, they won't notice the chunk you cut out of their fence! Smile
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DoverPipes

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Age : 49
Location : HUDSON VALLEY NY
Registration date : 2009-05-24

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Thu Nov 05, 2009 10:10 pm

Simple solution..........

BANGALORE TORPEDO!!!!!!!!!!!
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Anthony

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Age : 32
Location : Denver Colorado
Registration date : 2009-11-02

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Thu Nov 05, 2009 11:20 pm

Still ultra confused as to what it is about the two windows being blocked that is not okay... Are you trying to peek in on the neighbor? O_o?

Total newbie to fence laws/enforcement, but in all honesty, it seems like a silly thing to fret about in the long run. Much more important things to bicker over.
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Al in Canada

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Age : 72
Location : Blenheim, Ontario
Registration date : 2009-04-20

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:23 am

Meant to say and didn't, there is a big difference in having the permit to build a fence and building a legal fence. Check now, see the by-law office, check with a lawyer, whatever. Some acts when unchallenged move from unacceptable to legal just with the passage of time.

Many fences are "designed" by a local handyman, and they are told what is wanted and build it, or build what they are used to building, and because of the varying laws and ordinances in municipalities they may not be legal.

I mentioned the "ugly side in" rule, which is common in many areas, basically meaning the posts on a wooden fence should be facing the owners property, on the assumption that they can do repairs without trespassing on the adjacent property. An amazing number of "illegal" fences are constructed the other way around, because the owner didn't want to see the "ugly" side.

MOst jurisdictions give a "reasonable" length of time to make objections, but the definition of the "reasonable" time period can vary dramatically, it can be short like 60 days or long like five years. You must register your objection within whatever time frame applies to your area or you lose, even if the fence is non-conforming.

In some areas if the fence is built ugly side out (i.s\e. facing your property, and you do the upkeep, and the mowing, etc. then after a stated period of time the fence becomes yours, and so may the property so defined! So if the fence is supposed to have a setback of a foot from the property line, and through a provable usage, you maintained the fence, and its property, by mowing, painting, etc. You might be able to claim the "new" property line which would expand your property !!

Silence is translated into concurrence generally in these types of disputes.
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Bub

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Registration date : 2007-12-15

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:05 am

Thanks for all of your helpful comments.
Her fence is about 6-7 feet from our house so we can still see out the windows. However, the front of our house is curved so her fence obscures the open view that we had. We had contacted the company that surveyed the house when we bought it. We hadn't decided to have the fence line surveyed, but they came out anyway. When I came home they had identified the four corners of our property. Unfortunately, it looked like the fence was on her side.
We are trying to work with her and there appears to be some small amount of progress. We will try to work with our local government, but she has a permit and they feel that it meets code. We also might try a lawyer. As a last resort, we have threatened to remove the fence that separates our backyards but belongs to us. If she still wants her privacy then she will have to install another fence.
Bub
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docwatson

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Location : Central Massachusetts and midcoast Maine
Registration date : 2008-03-21

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Fri Nov 06, 2009 9:35 pm

Well Bub,
Dealing with neighbors can be a sticky situation as you already know, but on a more positive note, just look at all the wall/fence space that you can now decorate!!
Good luck in finding an equitable solution to your dilemma.
Doc
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Hermit

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Age : 64
Location : Ascension Parish
Registration date : 2008-04-22

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:09 pm

I wish my neighbors would build a fence.
Then my wife would stop bitching about
all the boats in their back yard. Rolling Eyes
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Anthony

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Age : 32
Location : Denver Colorado
Registration date : 2009-11-02

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:25 pm

Hermit wrote:
I wish my neighbors would build a fence.
Then my wife would stop bitching about
all the boats in their back yard. Rolling Eyes

I saw Hermit's s/n and thought "HOLY HELL, HIS NEIGHBOR FOUND THE FORUM AND IS GOING TO WRITE FENCE RELATED HATE-MAIL!".


haha. Damn. If only.
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dougc905

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Age : 54
Location : Brampton, Ontario
Registration date : 2009-01-11

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:54 pm

It's a real pain when you buy a home with the expectation that what you see is what you will always have. However,your neighbour has the same rights that you have. Congrats on working towards an equitable solution!

When I moved into my place, I found that I had no privacy at all in the yard. Not that I want to do anything questionable out there, but I would like to be able to treat it as a private, open-air part of my home. So I planted cedar trees all around the perimeter and right up between the houses. I will try to keep it to the bylaw mandated 8 ft. Don't really care what the neighbours think. At least it's green!

I guess I'm like your neighbour....
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Anthony

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Age : 32
Location : Denver Colorado
Registration date : 2009-11-02

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Fri Nov 06, 2009 11:05 pm

dougc905 wrote:
It's a real pain when you buy a home with the expectation that what you see is what you will always have. However,your neighbour has the same rights that you have. Congrats on working towards an equitable solution!

When I moved into my place, I found that I had no privacy at all in the yard. Not that I want to do anything questionable out there, but I would like to be able to treat it as a private, open-air part of my home. So I planted cedar trees all around the perimeter and right up between the houses. I will try to keep it to the bylaw mandated 8 ft. Don't really care what the neighbours think. At least it's green!

I guess I'm like your neighbour....

That's why I like living in a place like Nevada, where I can own acres and acres and acres of land, having only the mountain range as my neighbor.
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dougc905

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Age : 54
Location : Brampton, Ontario
Registration date : 2009-01-11

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Sat Nov 07, 2009 8:31 am

You've got it. A 30 ft square yard allows no privacy at all. Hence, fences.

Anthony wrote:
That's why I like living in a place like Nevada, where I can own acres and acres and acres of land, having only the mountain range as my neighbor.
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Bub

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Registration date : 2007-12-15

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Sun Nov 08, 2009 8:22 pm

Bad news, she doesn't want to negotiate...and even called the police.
We are going to survey the property line and try to work with local government. We are not optimistic
Bub
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jeremyt

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Age : 40
Location : Alexandria,Al
Registration date : 2009-08-17

PostSubject: Re: Problems with fences   Sun Nov 08, 2009 10:32 pm

Hey Bub, I hope everything works out to the best for you.
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