Property Rights question...

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So until you can cut all that growth down what's the issue with him cutting some branches off from your side of the fence? What's he supposed to do, cut them off where they protrude from his side of the fence? That will look pretty stupid.
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However it is my growth, growing from my soil. Is he allowed to determine what saplings or undergrowth come out of my soil. I understand if it protrudes or overhangs on his side of the property line he has rights to prune and trim as he sees fit I would say. He should be able to prune and clip up to a vertical plane that extends halfway into the fence.
The issue I raise is does he have a legal right to deliberately reach over and down to my soil and prune at the ground my "ugly weedy" saplings. He decided that day to determine what I should be growing or not growing.
I don't really know what the answer is, although I wish the guy had introduced himself and asked permission first. I'm not upset at the matter, just wondering who gets what rights. My wife, now she's the one upset with the guy.
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There is legalistics and there is neighborliness. When you moved in 2 years ago, did you introduce yourselves? Did he lve there beforeyou moved in?
--
Best regards
Han
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I think several of us have told you what the answer is. Unless the law is very peculiar where you are, he legally can't reach over the fence to prune back the ugly weedy saplings beyond the property line. However, it's becoming more clear there are two sides to this story. You chose to spend your time and money upgrading the inside of your house and neglected the outside. Those weedy saplings are growing through the fence and the neighbor has to look at them. If he just pruned them back to the fence on his side, it would still look like crap and in a few weeks or less, they would be protruding again.
Should he have asked you first? Yes. But, given the circumstances and your reaction, I'd say the more reasonable person here is the neighbor. He didn't prune one of your prime trees or even a tree at all. It sounds like what he pruned amounted to weeds and now your wife is all worked up over it. And I think to some extent you are too. I see more problems brewing.
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wrote:

I concur. It's clear who has as stick up their butt.
If you don't want amy more problems I suggest you prune your trees so that thay don't protrude through the fence.
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On 6/21/2011 8:56 AM, jamesgangnc wrote:

Current thread is an example of why, when I hit the lotto, I'm gonna buy and build where I can have at least a 100-foot strip of trees between me and the neighbors. Maybe put up a single non-barbed dayglo orange wire to mark the boundry, at a non-hazardous height, with suitable signs, to discourage open and notorious self-made easements. Nothing nasty or ugly, just something to keep the neighbors honest, and hunters out. (around here, too many of them think fencelines don't apply to them.)
--
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On 6/20/2011 8:13 PM, The Henchman wrote:

I have a saying I apply to all my neighbors (and I hope they apply it to me): "If that's the *worst* thing they do, then I've got a pretty decent neighbor." It helps keep this kind of stuff in perspective. Yeah, it's quirky, it's annoying, but it sure as hell beats having drug dealers, vandals, or petty thieves living next door. I'd rather have to deal with comparatively small-time stuff like this.
Speaking of which, I have a slightly weird neighbor problem. I have several big gardens on my property. It's quite pretty and people like to walk by, come on up and visit. Fine by me. But...every so often, somebody stops by when I'm not around and _adds_ something to my property. Like a bird feeder. Or a bat house. Or cutesie lawn or garden ornaments (those are the worst). I'm sure they mean well and are just trying to show their enjoyment of my property. But sometimes it puts me in an awkward position. Here's another mystery gift appearing on my property, and I think it's hideously tasteless. But if I remove it, I hurt somebody's feelings - whose, I have no idea. Nobody ever admits to gifting me with this stuff.
It's a whole lot better than having stuff stolen, which is what property owners usually have to deal with, so it's one of those "If this is the worst I have to deal with, I'm lucky" things.
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On 6/21/2011 9:42 AM, Hell Toupee wrote:

That's hilarious....and rare! I'd be dying of curiosity to know who gifted me with stuff like that. My guess would be a very good friend :o)

For the OP, I hope the "property rights question" becomes "how can we remain friends". The law is only the basis for the issue, and might be a long way from being a solution. I'm curious about keeping weed trees going among the desirable plants, and why they are allowed to grow through the fence....I KNOW one has the right to grow whatever...if the fence belongs to OP, then he's allowing trees to damage the fence. If the fence belongs to the neighbor, he really has an interest it keeping the stuff from growing through the fence. If the OP is not ABLE to keep up with the landscaping, a deal with the neighbor might help get it done. I hope you all make nice and become friends.
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On 6/21/2011 11:03 AM, snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net wrote:

Chuckle. In high school, my kid sister and her friends used to plant flocks of cheesy pink flamingos on lawns at times. One of her crowd had a dirt-cheap source for them. Not sure what criteria they used to pick their targets.
I just get paintballed or TP'd.
--
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LOL.
Well, I just hope they were gifts and not simply relocated items.
I seem to recall swapping some garden ornaments between two adjacent homes during my misspent youth.
But that was back in the days when ordinary folks had a sense of humor and didn't feel the need to immediately call the cops and then lawyer up for a civil suit.
--
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~|
| Malcolm Hoar "The more I practice, the luckier I get". |
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You have yet to tell us which side of the property line the fence is on. I have never heard of a fence being exactly on the line. Who originally paid for the fence and its installation?
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You have yet to tell us which side of the property line the fence is on. I have never heard of a fence being exactly on the line. Who originally paid for the fence and its installation?
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Built 43 years ago by the housing developer. It's a 43 year old cedar slat fence that my survey (dec 2009) says is the property line.
Most houses around here have the fence on the property line and the only time they don't is when spats or fights break around and the fence shifts to one side because of it.
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In that case, he is reaching to your property. My neighbor (we have no fence) has come on to my property to trim things too. I usually thank hem for doing so. Probably what your wife should do if he is cutting weed back.
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I'd like to see a picture of what henchman says are his plants or bushes or trees, and what the neighbor considers weeds. Maybe then we can judge who is right to remove them or not. Not that I would really encourage going onto another's property to do weeding. But then,spouse does it all the time to help the old widow next doors.
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Han
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Han wrote:

exactly. to the OP, those weeds might be the start of a hedge of trees to prevent the neighbors looking into their hot tub at night.
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If you read the original post there is already a "hedge" of cedar, probably leyland cypress. Subsequent posts suggest the yard was neglected for a number of years prior to this. It's likely the "trees" in question are trees that sprang up naturally from seed and remained because no one was keeping the area between the fence and the "cedar" trees maintained.
The op stopped replying after a number of people pointed out that while he was technically right he was also being excessively anal. And that until he was ready to maintain the area he probably shouldn't worry much about how his neighbor prunes trees that stick through the fence.
You really see a more probable conclusion based on what has been posted?
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jamesgangnc wrote:

yep. i think you're ASSUME-ing the type of trees, the type and height of fence, and whether the 'weeds' were actually seen by the OP when he moved in or in walks around his property that he intended to leave in place.
with a nosy neighbor with a propensity to mess with my property, and gaps between the trees, i'd want my hedge to fill in and make it solid to about 10'.
in my area, it's very uncommon to have backyard fences and thus it's hard to see where actual property lines are. my neighbor is a small B&B. all this spring, i had strangers wandering around in my backyard taking pictures of the cacti in bloom. bothersome, to say the least, although none had the temerity to bother anything.
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While I agree a picture would seal the deal, I have to agree with James that we have a pretty good idea of what's going on. The OP stated that the property had not been maintained for 7 years when they bought it and they chose to work on upgrading the interior first for some additional period of unkown duration. In the first post he described the situation as:
"On MY side of the fence are thick cedar trees that go about 15 feet high. Scattered throughout the cedars are small trees (not cedar) or something that are growing and poking thru the fence into the neighbours sides.
the neighbour decided the reach over the fence line and clip the those little weedy trees that are growing from my land in-between they nice cedar tree barrier"
In a follow on post he called them ugly weedy saplings. I think from that, you can figure out what's going on with a fairly high confidence level. The OP made no claim that the weedy saplings were part of any screening plan or of any value to him at all. And it sounds like the cedar trees already provide a screen.
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On 6/22/2011 11:44 AM, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

If the OP is still reading: please consider your neighbor's point of view. Trees on the property line are nothing but a *huge* headache. They are guaranteed to make trouble. Your neighbor waited for two years for you to clean the trash trees out, but you didn't. He should've talked to you about it. If he'd been upfront and said, these trees are not gonna provide any benefit to you and are going to be nothing but trouble for me, and then offered to clear them, you probably would've been happy to let him do it. On the other hand, if you'd balked, he would've found himself with trouble, and he would've had to resort to surreptitiously dealing with the problem.
You offended him by continuing to maintain a nuisance on your property that adversely affected his, then he offended you by taking matters in his own hands. Consider it even and move on.
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On 6/19/2011 9:49 PM, The Henchman wrote:

He most likely had no right to do as he did. Good start to a huge, expensive dispute....best to calm it now and perhaps do as he asks. Keeping egos out of it, getting rid of weed trees probably needs to be done and would be good for you, your yard and the fence. Good luck.
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