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  1. #1
    sdarcy is offline Junior Member
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    neighbor is causing our fence to erode

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? NJ

    Just discovered that our wooden fence (which is about 10 years old but still in relatively good shape) appears to be eroding away at the bottom all along the property line where the neighbor behind us has been stacking mulch all up along it. I can't imagine mulch stacked up along a wooden fence can be any good for the fence. This must've been going on for years. Can anything be done?? We don't like this guy he's extremely hostile. I remember when we first had the fence put up he kicked and screamed that it was on his property (it wasn't..the survey proved it) So we really dread talking to him about it

    Can a neighbor put or lean anything on your fence? In the past he has leaned these large ladders and other things up against our fence which we had to look at...not a pretty site.

    Anyone else had this problem?

    Thank youWhat is the name of your state (only U.S. law)?
  2. #2
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    no. If the fence is clearly on your property, the neighbor has no rights to even touch your fence let alone use it for a backstop for their mulch.

    as to the damage: you will have to prove the mulch cause the damage. Once you can do, ask for the costs of repairing the fence.

    In the meantime, send them a letter, certified, demanding they remove the mulch from contacting your fence.
  3. #3
    NC Aggie is offline Member
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    Well unless you can prove specific damage to your fence, I'm not sure what, if anything, you can do. Mulch, straw, or any other type of landscaping done on your neighbor's property that abuts your fence is relatively petty in comparison other legitimate neighborly disputes that can arise.
  4. #4
    sdarcy is offline Junior Member
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    <<done on your neighbor's property that abuts your fence is relatively petty in comparison other legitimate neighborly disputes that can arise. >>

    Well what can I say, its just yet another example of an inconsiderate neighbor. I wouldn't dream of piling stuff up against someone's fence, let alone mulch- The fence looks fine everywhere else but you can clearly see jagged sections and worn down fence all along where his mulch is pushing through. The fence has probably been wet and covered up for years now - Oh but its no big deal right? Guess I should've also mentioned that he has a extremely loud german shepherd dog, the loudiest truck on the block as well as a loud motorcycle which he seems hell bent on just revving up for minutes on end several times a day...every day. Oh also, he constantly violates the noise ordinance with his early morning power washing, lawn mowing and other noisy activities weekend mornings.

    Oh but I guess you're right.... its all relatively petty
  5. #5
    csi7 is offline Senior Member
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    If you have a property survey with markers and your fence is completely on your side of the property line, you can remove the mulch from your side of the fence.

    Our neighbor put up a spite privacy fence four inches away from our chain link fence and we use round-up to kill the grass and weeds in between the two fences. We use a tiny spray nozzle to prevent the round-up from going all over the place. I had to place bricks on our side of the chain link fence since there is only two inches to the property line from the fence line, and that keeps the fence from being wet all the time.

    I don't have any suggestions for the other issues with your neighbor. Good luck!
  6. #6
    NC Aggie is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by sdarcy View Post
    <<done on your neighbor's property that abuts your fence is relatively petty in comparison other legitimate neighborly disputes that can arise. >>

    Well what can I say, its just yet another example of an inconsiderate neighbor. I wouldn't dream of piling stuff up against someone's fence, let alone mulch- The fence looks fine everywhere else but you can clearly see jagged sections and worn down fence all along where his mulch is pushing through. The fence has probably been wet and covered up for years now - Oh but its no big deal right? Guess I should've also mentioned that he has a extremely loud german shepherd dog, the loudiest truck on the block as well as a loud motorcycle which he seems hell bent on just revving up for minutes on end several times a day...every day. Oh also, he constantly violates the noise ordinance with his early morning power washing, lawn mowing and other noisy activities weekend mornings.

    Oh but I guess you're right.... its all relatively petty
    Well again, if you believe his actions are causing damage to your fence, bring this to his attention but it sounds like this is just one of many issues you have with the neighbor.
  7. #7
    sdarcy is offline Junior Member
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    mulch

    <<If you have a property survey with markers and your fence is completely on your side of the property line, you can remove the mulch from your side of the fence. >>


    sorry, I'm not sure I understand this "remove the mulch from your side of the fence" unless you mean I hop the fence onto his property and remove all along the fence (which is technically my property) where his put his mulch? I don't know how I can do that without being on his property UNLESS I get a chair and lean over the fence while still on our property and rake all along and get his mulch off our fence ????

    because the mulch that is seeping through our fence - yeah that is definitely on our property and obviously I can remove that... I think I will leave it though to show whoever at the township can help - or I'll call someone at a fence company to get some advice.
  8. #8
    Kiawah is offline Senior Member
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    One leaf blower, with it's nozzle placed under the fence on your side, would take care of any mulch or leaves touching the bottom of your fence. That would get the conversation going between you and your neighbor.
  9. #9
    sdarcy is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiawah View Post
    One leaf blower, with it's nozzle placed under the fence on your side, would take care of any mulch or leaves touching the bottom of your fence. That would get the conversation going between you and your neighbor.
    That is actually a good idea!

    but the mulch is packed up quite high...between 1 - 2 feet all along our fence

    that would make quite a mess on his side

    I can hear him screaming now
  10. #10
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    I would demand the mulch be moved. Mulch retains moisture and the boards being exposed to constant moisture is definitely damaging to them
  11. #11
    MountainDew is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by sdarcy View Post
    Guess I should've also mentioned that he has a extremely loud german shepherd dog, the loudiest truck on the block as well as a loud motorcycle which he seems hell bent on just revving up for minutes on end several times a day...every day. Oh also, he constantly violates the noise ordinance with his early morning power washing, lawn mowing and other noisy activities weekend mornings.
    If he's breaking the law, call the police. Do it over and over again as many times as it takes no matter how petty you think it is. A law is a law and that's why we all pay the police to enforce them. If you live within the city limits, I'm sure there's a lot you can do about noise problems and dogs barking. Is that loud truck within the decibel limit? Does the dog bark "unreasonably"? You could totally ruin his month...

    If he gets the idea you're going to call the police the second you see something fishy, maybe he won't be so fishy anymore...
  12. #12
    154NH773 is offline Member
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    <<If you have a property survey with markers and your fence is completely on your side of the property line, you can remove the mulch from your side of the fence. >>


    sorry, I'm not sure I understand this "remove the mulch from your side of the fence" unless you mean I hop the fence onto his property and remove all along the fence (which is technically my property) where his put his mulch? I don't know how I can do that without being on his property UNLESS I get a chair and lean over the fence while still on our property and rake all along and get his mulch off our fence ????
    You must know exactly where the property line is, and how close your fence is to the line. If your fence is right on the line, then you have no right to remove, or demand he remove, mulch that might be piled right up to the property line. You only have a right to demand removal of mulch that is actually on your property.

    In the event you have to replace the fence, move it back enough so you can maintain both sides, and put the neighbor on notice that the property on his side belongs to you.
    Last edited by 154NH773; 05-24-2010 at 07:53 AM.
  13. #13
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by 154NH773 View Post
    You must know exactly where the property line is, and how close your fence is to the line. If your fence is right on the line, then you have no right to remove, or demand he remove, mulch that might be piled right up to the property line. You only have a right to demand removal of mulch that is actually on your property.

    In the event you have to replace the fence, move it back enough so you can maintain both sides, and put the neighbor on notice that the property on his side belongs to you.
    if the fence is edged to the property line,. while he cannot control what the other guy does with his mulch up to the property line, he can prevent the guy from allowing the mulch to lay against his fence because the fence would be on the OP's property. If the guy can magically stack the mulch up 2 or 3 feet and not have it lay against the fence, more power to him but once it touches the fence, it is illegal.
  14. #14
    NC Aggie is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by justalayman View Post
    if the fence is edged to the property line,. while he cannot control what the other guy does with his mulch up to the property line, he can prevent the guy from allowing the mulch to lay against his fence because the fence would be on the OP's property. If the guy can magically stack the mulch up 2 or 3 feet and not have it lay against the fence, more power to him but once it touches the fence, it is illegal.
    I think that's a bit of stretch in that I doubt very seriously you could get the police or even City to get involved with a complaint of this nature unless the OP file suit for damages. I understand there may be a legitimate concern for potential damage to the fence, but I think the issues the OP have posed are moreso nuisances than anything else.
  15. #15
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by NC Aggie View Post
    I think that's a bit of stretch in that I doubt very seriously you could get the police or even City to get involved with a complaint of this nature unless the OP file suit for damages. I understand there may be a legitimate concern for potential damage to the fence, but I think the issues the OP have posed are moreso nuisances than anything else.
    Of course you aren't going to get the police of the city to bat an eye toward this. It is a civil matter and as such, the guy would have to sue.

    OP has stated there is already damage. Obviously it is not just a nuisance. Neighbor is causing damages.

    and I can assure you, and as has already been stated, causing the fence to be continually wet can damage the wood.

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