sunken back yard


Hello all..
I have been in a house for two years that was a rental property for 10 years before I bought it. The previous owner neglected the gutter system on the roof so when I moved in, it was completley onstructed, rusted out in many spots, and collapsing in the middle. That was promptly corrected.
The gutters and sump pump drained into the line that I thought went out to the street. However, I discovered the line ended at the apron of the driveway, and a sink hole had started to develop. I had to have a new drain line dug. The old line was cracked it self along the drive way so that it was a 50/50 output at the end of the old line and water seeping out around it. So, I don't know how much has been washed away from the soil under the driveway.
When I moved in, almost immediatley I noticed water in the basement.. after I corrected the above problems, I have had a tremendous relief of the water problem. However, I still get some water after heavy rains.
I have two trees in the yard. On in the front and one in the back, and there is a real problem with surface roots, that cause a virtual ponding in the front and the back yard. The tree in the front yard is a japanese cherry blossom tree, and a root grows across the yard, where the water is prevented from flowing away from the house, towards the street. The tree in the back is a tremendous oak tree, and there is a huge root breaking the surface, and prevents water from flowing down the gradient into the neighbors yard, which is lower than mine. You can see where the water collects.. and you can actually feel that area is lower than the rest of the yard.
Do I have to have those trees cut down right off the bat to alleviate this problem? What would happen if I just cut away those problem roots? my next door neighbor has had all her trees cut away for this very problem (and she said alot of the other neighbors through the years have had their trees taken away..)
Once the roots out of the way, will the water flow naturally correct itself or will I have to have the yard re-graded?
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Wow, I have to say the answer is no. Those sound like some nice mature trees that have to add a lot of value to your property, not to mention the pleasure they must give you. If you cut away the roots of a tree my guess is that it would kill them. You should consult a certified arborist to determine what your choices are for managing those valuable trees.
You say that your problem has been largly solved except for major rainfall events. You could just install equipment in the basement like a sump pump or de-humidifiers as an alternative to destroying those trees.
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Lawrence wrote:

I second this comment. TB
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