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Neighbor mows part of my front lawn.

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Dadman

New member
I live in Macomb County Michigan and I have an odd issue. The neighbors on our block are all wonderful people. Very friendly and definitely polite. That is except for my direct next door neighbor on one side. He is elderly and very strange. He has put homemade wood chips from the front of his home to the sidewalk and then from the sidewalk to the street. The backyard has waist high foliage covering it. Two other neighbors have seen rats! The front property is covered in large plants that sometimes flower but mainly are weeds. The sidewalk is mostly unpassable with a stroller and sometimes on foot due to all the wood and sticks. Annoying because I'm fighting a constant battle to save my lawn from invasive weeds and Flora. Its a mess but the city hopefully will do something about it.
Now my main issue is he has taken to mowing a 2 foot section of my front lawn that's adjunct to his property. He called me over the other day and told me that my 20 foot tall cedar cone shaped bushes are "encroaching on his property" (they stick thru the hurricane fence 1 to 2 inches in small tufts here and there for about 5 feet) and he owns two feet of the property next to his driveway and wants it cleared up immediately!

There's obviously a nice way to ask and he chose the jerk way. We have lived here for 5 years and never had any issues. I hadn't noticed the cotton swab sized Tufts of cedar fluff and trimmed them back tho it felt silly. The lawn thing is a bit wierd tho. I mean NOBODY I have ever lived next to has mowed that little section of lawn.
It's widely accepted that our front lawns are the responsibility of the homeowner to clean and maintain. When I spoke to my other neighbors about this they thought it really strange because none of them really consider that part of the property their responsibility. We all mow and maintain the lawns in our front yards ourselves as there's no separation line or anything. It's just a big square of grass between the driveways.
I keep it mowed very neatly anyway so there's no real reason for him to trim it but he sets his lawn mower at its lowest possible setting practically burning the lawn and mows it as low as he possibly can so my lawn looks like it has a weird strip running along one side.

My question is what option do I have? I have two small children and a little dog and I'm afraid if I push the issue he might try to poison our pet. Is there a website where I can find the property lines ? I've looked around but all I find are strange pay sites . Has anyone else had something like this happen?

Thanks again guys. It's the first time I've ever had this happen
 


xylene

Senior Member
Report the rats and overgrowth to code enforcement.

Tell him, in writing; "do not mow my lawn. Do not perform any landscaping on my property. Do not trespass on my property. This is formal notice."

If he asks you to do any work on his property, ignore him. Whether it is because of your vegetation or otherwise.

PS, a neighbor not being nice in their tone is not a legal issue. Seperate getting bent out of shape on that from the law
 

quincy

Senior Member
You say the neighbor is elderly. Could it be possible that he needs help with maintaining his lawn and/or needs other personal assistance?
 

Dadman

New member
I live in Macomb County Michigan and I have an odd issue. The neighbors on our block are all wonderful people. Very friendly and definitely polite. That is except for my direct next door neighbor on one side. He is elderly and very strange. He has put homemade wood chips from the front of his home to the sidewalk and then from the sidewalk to the street. The backyard has waist high foliage covering it. Two other neighbors have seen rats! The front property is covered in large plants that sometimes flower but mainly are weeds. The sidewalk is mostly unpassable with a stroller and sometimes on foot due to all the wood and sticks. Annoying because I'm fighting a constant battle to save my lawn from invasive weeds and Flora. Its a mess but the city hopefully will do something about it.
Now my main issue is he has taken to mowing a 2 foot section of my front lawn that's adjunct to his property. He called me over the other day and told me that my 20 foot tall cedar cone shaped bushes are "encroaching on his property" (they stick thru the hurricane fence 1 to 2 inches in small tufts here and there for about 5 feet) and he owns two feet of the property next to his driveway and wants it cleared up immediately!

There's obviously a nice way to ask and he chose the jerk way. We have lived here for 5 years and never had any issues. I hadn't noticed the cotton swab sized Tufts of cedar fluff and trimmed them back tho it felt silly. The lawn thing is a bit wierd tho. I mean NOBODY I have ever lived next to has mowed that little section of lawn.
It's widely accepted that our front lawns are the responsibility of the homeowner to clean and maintain. When I spoke to my other neighbors about this they thought it really strange because none of them really consider that part of the property their responsibility. We all mow and maintain the lawns in our front yards ourselves as there's no separation line or anything. It's just a big square of grass between the driveways.
I keep it mowed very neatly anyway so there's no real reason for him to trim it but he sets his lawn mower at its lowest possible setting practically burning the lawn and mows it as low as he possibly can so my lawn looks like it has a weird strip running along one side.

My question is what option do I have? I have two small children and a little dog and I'm afraid if I push the issue he might try to poison our pet. Is there a website where I can find the property lines ? I've looked around but all I find are strange pay sites . Has anyone else had something like this happen?

Thanks again guys. It's the first time I've ever had this happen
Report the rats and overgrowth to code enforcement.

Tell him, in writing; "do not mow my lawn. Do not perform any landscaping on my property. Do not trespass on my property. This is formal notice."

If he asks you to do any work on his property, ignore him. Whether it is because of your vegetation or otherwise.

PS, a neighbor not being nice in their tone is not a legal issue. Seperate getting bent out of shape on that from the law
I wasn't sure what the law says about it tho I've tried to research. I've never had an issue like this. Legally ifis his property can he just do what he wants even tho it's commonly considered our front lawn and in front of our home? Nobody seemed to know which is why I posted it here. Sorry if I stuck it in the wrong forum. :)
 

Dadman

New member
You say the neighbor is elderly. Could it be possible that he needs help with maintaining his lawn and/or needs other personal assistance?
People have asked but he's always told them no. I usually shovel his snow for him anyway because if I dont it dosent get done and I worried he might fall or get stuck.
 

xylene

Senior Member
If you are unclear about whose property begins and ends where, get a survey.

If his yard is overgrown and harboring rats, that may be a city code issue. Call code enforcement.

If plants are trivially growing into his side, he can trim them.
 

quincy

Senior Member
People have asked but he's always told them no. I usually shovel his snow for him anyway because if I dont it dosent get done and I worried he might fall or get stuck.
Here is a link to Macomb County resources for senior citizens:

Because you have lived next to this neighbor for 5 years without problem, and the neighbor's current behavior is a change from what you've experienced before, it is possible the neighbor has a (perhaps undiagnosed) health issue.

If your major concern is with a strip of land in front of your house that is between a sidewalk and the road, you are responsible for maintaining that strip of land that fronts your property.
 

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