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Fence on the wrong side of the property line. Need advice


99_XC600

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Figure I would pose this question out to the crew and see what their take is on it.

 

On the left hand side of my lot, there is a chain link fence that runs parallel to my drive way and they makes a 90* turn and runs back to the neighbors garage, The problem is that when the neighbor put the fence up it was discovered that it was installed over the property line by about 20" about a year after.

 

After we found the issue, The neighbor and I talked about it and we both looked at the lot survey and agreed that it was over and if it ever became as issue that he would move the fence. At the time it wasn't a big deal because we got along pretty well and I didn't feel like making it an issue since essentially the section of land borders the driveway and is just a grass strip.

 

As you know, one of the projects I worked on over the summer was filling in my backyard. (The Big Fill). Since I've built the retaining wall and leveled everything out, I no longer have access to the back of the garage from the right hand side. I have to access it from the left hand side. With the fence being over the property line, I essentially have about 36" from the corner of my garage to the fence. As I was working on the project, I talked to the owner and mentioned that I now needed the fence moved because of access issues. He said that he would move it.

 

Here is were it get's interesting, in the past 7 years he had divorced and moved out.The property became a rental and he had various tenants living there. In the last 6 months, he became divorced again and the tenant who was there was not paying and essentially left in the middle of the night. The house has been abandoned for the last 4 months and last week the owner sent me a text message saying to do what ever I wanted to do with the fence and that the house was going into foreclosure.

 

So essentially, I'm being left holding the bag on this stupid fence. Knowing the owner has no intentions of moving it on his own, It's now up to me to deal with it. So what are my options?

 

1.Cut it down.

2.Move the fence myself.

3.Talk to the town and have them pursue it?

4. Contact the bank that owns the property and file a "lean" or some other type of complaint.

 

The section is about 60' long and if I had to buy some new line and terminal posts it wouldn't be that big of a deal, but I have enough stuff to do than have to worry about moving someone else's fence..

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Figure I would pose this question out to the crew and see what their take is on it.

On the left hand side of my lot, there is a chain link fence that runs parallel to my drive way and they makes a 90* turn and runs back to the neighbors garage, The problem is that when the neighbor put the fence up it was discovered that it was installed over the property line by about 20" about a year after.

After we found the issue, The neighbor and I talked about it and we both looked at the lot survey and agreed that it was over and if it ever became as issue that he would move the fence. At the time it wasn't a big deal because we got along pretty well and I didn't feel like making it an issue since essentially the section of land borders the driveway and is just a grass strip.

As you know, one of the projects I worked on over the summer was filling in my backyard. (The Big Fill). Since I've built the retaining wall and leveled everything out, I no longer have access to the back of the garage from the right hand side. I have to access it from the left hand side. With the fence being over the property line, I essentially have about 36" from the corner of my garage to the fence. As I was working on the project, I talked to the owner and mentioned that I now needed the fence moved because of access issues. He said that he would move it.

Here is were it get's interesting, in the past 7 years he had divorced and moved out.The property became a rental and he had various tenants living there. In the last 6 months, he became divorced again and the tenant who was there was not paying and essentially left in the middle of the night. The house has been abandoned for the last 4 months and last week the owner sent me a text message saying to do what ever I wanted to do with the fence and that the house was going into foreclosure.

So essentially, I'm being left holding the bag on this stupid fence. Knowing the owner has no intentions of moving it on his own, It's now up to me to deal with it. So what are my options?

1.Cut it down.

2.Move the fence myself.

3.Talk to the town and have them pursue it?

4. Contact the bank that owns the property and file a "lean" or some other type of complaint.

The section is about 60' long and if I had to buy some new line and terminal posts it wouldn't be that big of a deal, but I have enough stuff to do than have to worry about moving someone else's fence..

If the fence has been there for more than 7 years. They don't have to move it. But if they are gone I would just take it down and not make a deal out of it.

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Any options you may have as far as the fence is concerned should be governed by local building codes or state laws, if there are any specific to this for your area. As the fence is clearly on your property and the neighbor has abandoned the issue (unfortunately), I believe that the fence is considered to owned by you and would be considered by any governing agency to be yours and your problem. You could try to file in small claims court, but the risk of costs to do so, in my opinion, would outweigh any possible return.

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The easiest thing might be to cut the fence down. You don't want this to be an issue when the house goes up for sale again. This is why agreements like you made can bite you ass in the long run sadly. Town government probably won't be a huge help in this situation.

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not sure your area but grandfather claw is pretty stable all around, if it stays long enough it can be left there for good. The problem with this is if you ever go to sell you have an issue explaining that 20" of your property is no longer valid to you or the new owners. take it out of there before new owners take up homestead especially if no one is there to ask what your doing....

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Comp56 explained it the best. Get rid of the fence or move it before anyone can ask questions. I would just get rid of it and leave it like that and put your own up down the road. You can salvage some of the parts in your garage till that happens!!!

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99, have you asked him in text to come over and take it down? If not, a foray before bank surveyors might be necessary. Additionally you have been paying tasted on 1200 square feet of your property that he has physically blocked from you with a fence that should not exist. If it were go to court and the bank claims ownership of your property that might become a sticking point too. Yeah.....black BDU's, black mascara courtesy of your wife, Sawzall and bolt cutters.

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Yeah I agree what everyone else is saying.  The guy is gone, just pull it down and call it a day.  If any questions arise, you have the owners permission as well as it being on your property anyway.  Once that house sells your going to have a hell of a time convincing somebody who just signed their life away to take down their fence.

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Yeah I agree what everyone else is saying.  The guy is gone, just pull it down and call it a day.  If any questions arise, you have the owners permission as well as it being on your property anyway.  Once that house sells your going to have a hell of a time convincing somebody who just signed their life away to take down their fence.

not to mention they might be getting 20" of your property you are paying for if it stays there at least new owners might want to have a fence and they can closer to the property line....

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Figure I would post some pics of the fence. Just so everyone can see what I'm dealing with. I'm all for taking the section that is on my side of property line down however that would leave the ends of the fence still up since they are not the issue at hand.

 

At this point, I think I'm just going to move the long section back the 20" onto the property line and just be done with it. It's going to cost me about $100 in line and terminal posts and a day of my time.

 

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That sucks but it's probably your best option. I would try to get it done before the ground freezes though. You don't know when the house might get relisted. If it was like an inch or 2 I probably wouldn't have bothered but 20 inches isn't a joke

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I'm going to do it either Thursday or Friday of this week. I've been lucky enough that the ground is still soft, but I know my time is limited and if I don't do it now the ground is going to freeze and then more than likely the house will be listed before the springtime. Either way I'm texting the owner this week to let him know and if he has any objections to come over,

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Before you rip it out locate the property line off the fence and put in a concrete marker incase the current owner or new owner get cute this way it's out in plain sight that this is the property line. Then I would suggest moving it or removing it all together

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