Just bought a property in Miami-Dade County, Florida and want to build
a fence along the property line on my side.
The neighbor has parked a vehicle on the grass with half the car over
on my side. The hood is up and the engine is out and he is apparently
fixing it in his garage. He has a few other cars parked on his
property that are partially disassembled.
I recently had the survey done during the purchase and the surveyor
sprayed painted the iron pin locations and one of them is right at a
power pole. The survey shows the line is 25 feet from the exterior
wall of my house, which is about 7 feet from the exterior wall of his
When I mentioned to my new neighbor that I am going to build a fence
and whether he mind moving his disassembled vehicle out of the way he
said yes no problem. Then later he came back and seemed upset and says
he disagrees with where the property line is.
I showed him the spray painted iron pins. I showed him the power pole
from the utility company, I showed him my survey and measured from my
wall to the spray painted location - 25 feet. He disagrees. He says
it should be half way between the two houses. I stated to hiim this is
not the case as the property line is defined in the legal description
and this is what the survey is going by, and that if he has a survey of
his house he should be able to confirm this. He says he does not have
I said to him he is welcome to hire his own surveyor to check this. I
also said when I build the fence, I will be getting a permit and the
county will have to approve it and they will not approve it if the
fence is on his side. He walked away angry and says he is not going to
move the car.
Now I pissed off a new neighbor and have a mess in my hand.
He should have a deed and the country records will have a deed. That will
give a description of the property, possible enough to make a good
While you don't want to piss off a neighbor, the law is the law and there is
a legal description of the property. What is a PITA is that you may end up
on court over what is probably a bad attitude. Yes, most property lines
probably are in the center, but it does n ot have to be.
If he is not interested in helping, you can probably get the deed
information from public records.
This is only true if the minimum setbacks pretty much force it. If
there's room to offset the house, people frequently do, because
a seven-foot yard on one side and a 21 foot yard on the other is
a lot more useful than two 14 foot yards.
email@example.com wrote in message ...
Yes, perhaps something involving electricity. ;-) Seriously, it sounds
like you tried to be reasonable with your neighbor, but sometimes the
"new kid on the block" gets kicked around by the "territorial old
heads," unless you stand your ground, which I would. Just because his
car is parked there, doesn't mean it should be, it just means nobody has
challenged it until now. Good luck.
That is NUTS. Would you give away 9 feet of your property to your neighbor? I
I say build the fence, 6 feet high, move his car yourself, and if the neighbor
wants to sue let him.
Once he realizes he can't intimidate you he will cool off.
How long has he lived there, has he been cutting the grass, does he
have a fence on the line, look up the law Adverse Possession, it could
be his land now if he did things right, his car is showing open
possession. Go to the city records office you might find his survey
there, get a copy and try to be friends and explain it. Some states you
need only 5 years , some 20 or 25 to adversly possess land. Did you ever
hear of the Hatfields and Mccoys, it happens every day. You should start
by cutting your lawn on your land. As far as the car and fence, try to
work it out as friends, you will know soon enough his position. Adverse
Possession is common. If he wants to steal your land put in some fencing
and push his car off, keep your video camera handy you never know what
FL appears to be 7 years. Also, interestingly, it may be that he
has to pay the taxes on the disputed part during the time of notorious,
In addition, law says the land has to be "protected by substantial
enclosure" -- such as a fence -- or "usually cultivated or improved."
Putting the car on the area would not be enclosing it.
Not exactly true.
Adverse Posession states that the person must be using the property
"open and notoriously" AND "must be paying the taxes". The Adverse
Posession law was put into effect when the Dust-Bowlers packed up and
moved west and left their property. It allowed for someone else to
come in and take over the property and petition for legal ownership,,,
NOT for a neighbor to start squeezing you off of your property because
they have more junk than they have room for.
You have a right to have them move their crap so you can use your
property as you see fit.
After you check and make sure the land is yours and if he refuses to
move the car - see if you can have the car towed. You can claim it was
abandoned on your property. If the former owner was paying his taxes
properly and he must have been or you would have found out at the
closing, the neighbor has not been paying taxes on that piece of land.
You can verify it with property appraiser's office. I am in Pinellas
Co. FL and the property appraiser here has a web site showing who owns
what. Check the Dade Co. web site and see if you can find out anything
On 21 Jun 2006 16:05:25 -0700, " firstname.lastname@example.org"
I have doubts about pushing it back on his property beffore he has
agreed to it, but this is just crazy. It's his car, and you are
recommending the OP snatch it. They will always be enemies if he does
He can claim all he wants, but it's not abandoned. His neighbor
believes that it is on his property, and iiuc, half of it is.
The neigbhor doesn't know that. So it doesn't matter.
It might matter with regard to adverse possession, but I don't think
there is much chance that the nbor has gained adverse possession.
There are a lot of requirements, and the OP should see the entire
florida statute, plus all the case decisions that follow from it. If
there is a public law library, or the book is at the public library,
he should read the Florida Annotated Code, but even there, he'll only
find a tiny summary of each case decision, and it may be hard to read
in the strange language they sometimes use.
Www.findlaw.com has statutes and for many states, a decent way to find
the rirght statute, but as far as I know, it has no case law.
Nexus/Lexis has case law, but it's hard to find that for free.
The hard part is convincing the neighbor. I don't know how much
surveys cost or if the neighbor will want a full survey or only a
surveyor to review the OP's survey. Rather than or in addition to the
dinners, the OP might agree to pay for half of the neighbor's expense
on this. Of course he's not entitled to that, but the goal is to be on
good terms with someone he might spend 40 years living next to.
The OP may wish to aks on misc.legal.moderated and for more general
info on adverse possession IMO, groups google this ng in the past two
weeks on the word "eunuch".
I agree with Goedjn and I would not move his car yourself. After
determining 100% that you are correct about the property line, I'd
send him a certified letter, with return receipt, stating that if
the car isn't moved by x date, it will be towed and only he will be
responsible for paying to get it out of impound. And ditto on
building the fence ASAP, and as high as the law allows on that side.
Give him some time, you don't need the fence right away, many people buy a
house and that's the very first home improvement project they do, screen out
the neighbors. Not saying you shouldn't, just soak in the new house and see
how it sits.
In the end, you just need him come around and accept that he was mistaken
about the property line all along. It happens all the time, people make
assumptions based on geographical boundaries and assume they are the same as
the legal property lines, its an easy mistake especially if the previous
owner of your house had the same mistaken belief. He may find he has more
on the other side of his house, maybe the developers didn't build in the
center of the lots.
You should be able to get the original surveyor to come back out and explain
the survey to you and your neighbor at the same time. Perhaps coming from
the professional, it will be irrefutable. He'll probably do it for free but
don't be surprised if he wants a small fee for a meeting.
In the end, you are perfectly within the law to Abate a Nuisance by Removing
it from your property even without notice. Just jack it onto some dollies
and push it sideways over the line (just kidding, you'll work it out if you
don't push too hard.)
Why would you do that to the poor pit bull? IMO owners should work it
out on their own, and leave the dog out of it. Gee, we have our pit
bull, on a chain, in the sun, next to the property line, with no water,
but we never knew he/she could be mean. Leave the dog out of it, and try
to work it out on a human level, though in some cases the dog might be
And be sure to give him an invoice for half the price of the fence too to
really piss him off! Most bylaws require that neighbors sharing a property
line must share the cost of the fence. Our bylaw states that half the cost
of a chain link fence must be paid but most share costs of wooden privacy
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