Real life MMD: Should we pay for the fence?

edited 10 May 2011 at 7:02PM in Money Saving Polls
86 replies 50.9K views
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  • oldtractoroldtractor Forumite
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    No dont pay,why should you?
  • wildthing01wildthing01 Forumite
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    things to do with neighbourly relations are tricky. on the one hand, as some have said, bad relations with your neighbours can make life hell, which might make you think you ought to contribute just to avoid the risk of upsetting them and them then getting back at you in some way.

    this is unfair though. we then end up walking on eggshells around people just because we're terrified of what they will do if we don't, and so they keep getting their own way, at our expense, and so life is made hell anyway. you might think that if you give in on this one, they will think you are a pushover and keep on asking for more and more.

    on the other hand, you may have lovely neighbours who would completely understand your standpoint - how well do you know them?

    i think i would be inclined tell a small fib and say i'm awfully sorry, but i'm unable to contribute financially, as i simply don't have the money (large debt/new baby/loss of job - make up an excuse). you could always offer to contribute some labour, thereby getting out of paying, but without getting into a stand-off with them.

    you could suggest, in the spirit of moneysaving, that they just add some trellis to the top of the current fencing, or put up screens on their side, if they want the extra height.
  • Hi will put my two pennyworth on this thread quite a few years ago i decided that i would like to put a new fence up on the right hand side of my garden which was classed as my neighbours fence and asked if they would be prepared to contribute.
    To which they said no they would not contribute.
    Because I wanted the fence I went ahead and put it up bearing all the expence myself.
    Within a couple of weeks the son in law took the old fence down which i had left in place,therefore gaining the extra inches for themselves.And a brand new fence.
  • It'a a common misconception that there is a rule that the fence on the left is your responsibility and hte one on the right is your neighbours. I work for the Land Registry and specific boundary responsibilty set out in deeds is certainly not the norm. In the absence of any specific information in the register or if unregistered, in your title deeds then the boundaries are a shared responsibility.
    We have a shared boundary with our neighbour, when we moved in we needed to put a fence in, for privacy and as we have 2 children and a dog. We approached our neighbour and he explained he was unable to afford a fence but was happy for us to put one in, we did so and since that day (15 years ago) there has been no hard feeling from us. My opinion is there is more likely to be bad feeling if you feel you've been forced to pay up fr something you don't want and can't affoed, honesty is the best policy!
  • This response does not offer any advice but it is relevant to the discussion, and asks another question, do you lose the right to half of the fence if your neighbour replaces it at his own cost?

    This is what has happened to me:

    Last year my neighbour told me he wanted to replace the shared fence between us and would I go 50/50 on the cost, I said "yes but not now cos I can't afford it."

    About 3 weeks later workmen moved in took away the old fence and posts and put in brand new ones, which was about a foot higher than the original, not a problem cos its a nice fence.

    All was well until recently when my neighbour overheard me talking about painting my side of the fence that he put in and he has kicked off on me saying its his fence and I can't touch it, he even turned all the panels round to make sure I hadn't touched them.

    I believe that because he removed an existing shared boundary fence and put one back in exactly the same place then it becomes a shared boundary fence again and he has "gifted" it to me, so I can paint my side. If he wants exclusive ownership of the fence then it needs to be on his land.

    I found this website: http://www.nfh.org.uk/

    which offers loads of advice about anything to do with "issues with neighbours" but they were unsure about my situation.

    Can anyone offer any advice, I dont want to paint the fence unless I am legally allowed to.
  • KateBobKateBob Forumite
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    All was well until recently when my neighbour overheard me talking about painting my side of the fence that he put in and he has kicked off on me saying its his fence and I can't touch it, he even turned all the panels round to make sure I hadn't touched them.

    I'd like to know what your neighbours plans are in the future, if he moves is he taking it with him. He does seem a little over attached!

    Perhaps he's still upset you didn't contribute, neighbours have loooooong memories.

    Just as a note I think neither you nor the orginal poster should have to contribute as the existing fencing was sound and it was a matter of taste.
    Kate short for Bob.

    Alphabet thread High Priestess of all things unsavoury

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  • We replaced the fence on both sides of our garden last year, taking out the horrible wire fence and putting up a nice wooden fence which was very slightly higher. We spoke to both neighbours to discuss our plan and both were happy as we were improving the fencing. However, we didn't even dream of asking them to contribute - it was our idea to replace them and we were choosing the new fencing. We didn't even consider who was 'legally' responsible for the boundaries, but just used common sense and communication skills...
    "Sealed Pot Challenge 5" #1642
  • billydobillydo Forumite
    11 Posts
    I would be very clear to neighbour and say absolutely no. If the fence is not broken or fallan apart and they want it higher just to please themselves, why should you pay any part towards it if you are content with how it already is. (suggest you would like a lower fence, would they contribute!). billydo.:j
  • dunnchadunncha Forumite
    23 Posts
    This response does not offer any advice but it is relevant to the discussion, and asks another question, do you lose the right to half of the fence if your neighbour replaces it at his own cost?

    This is what has happened to me:

    Last year my neighbour told me he wanted to replace the shared fence between us and would I go 50/50 on the cost, I said "yes but not now cos I can't afford it."

    About 3 weeks later workmen moved in took away the old fence and posts and put in brand new ones, which was about a foot higher than the original, not a problem cos its a nice fence.

    All was well until recently when my neighbour overheard me talking about painting my side of the fence that he put in and he has kicked off on me saying its his fence and I can't touch it, he even turned all the panels round to make sure I hadn't touched them.

    I believe that because he removed an existing shared boundary fence and put one back in exactly the same place then it becomes a shared boundary fence again and he has "gifted" it to me, so I can paint my side. If he wants exclusive ownership of the fence then it needs to be on his land.

    I found this website: http://www.nfh.org.uk/

    which offers loads of advice about anything to do with "issues with neighbours" but they were unsure about my situation.

    Can anyone offer any advice, I dont want to paint the fence unless I am legally allowed to.


    Don't paint it. Its not yours to paint. See this and many other stories...

    http://www.gethampshire.co.uk/news/s/2076048_criminal_damage_fine_for_painting_garden_fence
  • LycheeLychee Forumite
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    There's no reason for you to contribute other than having some control over the fence or it needs replacing anyway and you could pay half towards the cost of a 'normal' fence. Your neighbour should be considering as well their relationship with you.

    The fence in my garden fell down 4 months ago. 5 years ago, my neighbour said to me it's his fence (which he put up himself), and I therefore agreed to pay for the fence on the other side that had fallen down as I accepted at least one side would be mine! 5 years later, this fence (that is his!) falls down, said neighbour gives the wood away (for burning) and then tells me that after speaking to several people he believes he is not actually responsible for that fence and is expecting me to replace it - fully knowing that I had paid for the other side of my garden 5 years ago. He clearly isn't bothered about having a good relationship with me. I politely said no, I've paid for the other side based on him claiming it was his fence, and so there is now a big hole between the two gardens. Unfortunately his children are now often out playing in the garden with their friends and they all happily trespass into my garden. My deeds do not specify who is responsible

    Yes it's good to get on with your neighbours, but how annoying is it that your neighbour isn't bothered and you're the one having to be 'flexible'

    When a new wooden fence is put up, how long would you expect it to last before it'd need replacing?
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