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steppingonlego

Neighbour fence issue In Victoria

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steppingonlego

The next month will be a fun one for us.

A developer bought a block with an old house behind us.

We, along with 6-7 others, have objected and it goes to council towards the end of this month we are the most affected. It is doubtful it would be passed even without our objection as the building is within two metres of the boundary. There are other issues with shadow and our north facing garden.

Since the objection the developer has come once to our property to try and get us to withdraw our objection but offering no compromise saying they will not alter their plans. So we said we will proceed to council.

Todau they were taking pictures hanging over our fence and saying we need to replace a portion of it as it is unsafe. This is untrue we pointed out they would be tearing down the fence anyway but they kept saying it’s a safety issue. 

I think they are trying to do whatever they can to rattle us but it won’t we lose too much with it proceeding.

i am just wondering anyone who has had a fencing dispute I am sure they can’t just say it’s unsafe fix it.

wondering what the steps would be from here? If we just leave it they would need to prove to someone it’s unsafe I assume?

any advice appreciated 

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22Fruitmincepies

Document the condition of the fence now, photos etc. they may try to hasten it’s deterioration. 

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got my tinsel on

Take as many photos of the fence NOW as evidence of the condition of the fence.  Date and time the photos.

Do not think they won't damage the fence to prove their point. 

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born.a.girl

Yeah, have had a few issues with fences and development, not the same as yours.

First one knocked the front fence post out of the ground, which meant the gates had to come off, and they flatly refused to do anything about a boundary fence until they'd finished the construction in case it got damaged again. That left us with a toddler and no gate on a busy road. By the time anything would have been achieved they would have finished anyway, so we just had to put up with it.

Second one they demolished the house, inc a brick garage which was on the boundary, with some  of the debris falling into our yard - no warning - there was a three year old next door and the garage extended along their fence line.   After they were done it left a gap and the owner wanted us to pay half for putting up temporary fencing. I insisted she pay as I hadn't knocked it down.

Can only agree with others - document everything now, showing that the fence is in good condition so that if they damage it further, it will be up to them to fix.   You may then have to put up with no fence until it's finished of course in that case.

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eponee
Posted (edited)

Another potential fencing saga.  We've had a few of those on EB.  I hope it all goes OK for you SOL

Edited by eponee

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steppingonlego

Thanks so much @-Belinda- that made me feel a bit better.

I have just gone out and taken filmed the fence and photos too.

I hope it doesn’t get unpleasant 

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born.a.girl
12 minutes ago, steppingonlego said:

Thanks so much @-Belinda- that made me feel a bit better.

I have just gone out and taken filmed the fence and photos too.

I hope it doesn’t get unpleasant 

Whenever there's an issue, just imagine them seeing dollar signs in front of their eyes. That's all it is to most developers.   It's a bonus to them if you get emotional about it because they sure won't, even if they use emotive language with you.  The calmer you stay, the more you'll achieve - easier said that done, I can tell you.

The downside to it taking them so long to force you to contribute to a fence, is it also works the other way.  If they damage the fence so it falls over, they won't want to fix it until later, probably, by which time it will be obvious that it can't be avoided.

In one of our instances, I offered to have the posts on our side (they were meant to be on his) and he was so pleased that he paid for the fence, given he'd ended up with a narrowish driveway, and we had garden on our side.   Keep your cards to yourself though, if you have anything to negotiate with.

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Fennel Salad

Have had MAJOR neighbour problem and fencing.  It can be a major problem and i have the wounds (figuratively) to prove it 

What I recommend as a first step is to get them to document how they think the fence is unsafe. Put the onus on them to prove it.  Document every interaction with them. Take photos of the fence as it is now because depending on the type of creature they are, they may hasten it's demise.

I'm in NSW, so our fencing act will be different but here there is a lot of weight here given to the idea of a "sufficient dividing fence" i.e. as a property demarker. Additionally, is your common fence "typical" of what is in your local area? If so, tick.  Does the ajoining fence conform to planning controls? Another tick ... etc

Be calm, assertive and firm and document, document, document.

 

 

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qak

Also if you are going to council, mention this attempt at intimidation, and request that the developer be required to install new fences BEFORE commencing construction.

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Luci

In addition to taking photos of the fence as mentioned by PP's I suggest keeping notes of all interactions with them. Dates of any conversations and what was said etc.  I personally would be reluctant to talk to them at all.  They don't have your best interests at heart, they are just trying to coerce you into changing your mind. 

If they have a problem with the fence they need to go through the proper legal steps. I think this varies from state to state but I know in some states you can first prepare a form which is a "notice on intention to fence" sort of thing.  You could contact your local Council for more information, so find out what steps someone needs to take if they want a neighbor to repair or replace a fence. 

 

 

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~LemonMyrtle~

Was that just a quick excuse they made up cause they were caught snooping over the fence into your backyard? Cause why would they care if the fence was old and needed to be replaced? If they want you to pay for half down the track when they eventually replace it, then they have just shown their hand and now you have evidence of your fence in its current condition. 
 

They’re probably just taking photos of your backyard to help their defence somehow. Maybe they’re trying to prove you don’t have any plants there that will get overshadowed or something. 

stay strong, document everything. Try and find previous projects they have done and talk to those neighbours. 

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TigerQueenofSheeba
2 hours ago, eponee said:

Another potential fencing saga.  We've had a few of those on EB.  I hope it all goes OK for you SOL

Have to admit... I saw the thread title and couldn't resist. I love a good fence saga!

These developers sound like right royal a**holes. 

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steppingonlego

DH told them to put their request regarding the fence in writing. 
If they do so we will be telling them to not come into our property again and to please put any requests in writing.

The council called us to confirm that the objection was slated to be heard in several weeks at the next meeting for planning and we will get an invitation to attend.

As they aren’t living there hopefully their visits are sporadic I have considered a cheap camera pointing at our fence just in case they try something.

DH mentioned what they did to council who said it wasn’t acceptable but will make sure we bring it back up when the meeting takes place

we may get someone to come and do a shadow overlay for us as well. DH thinks theirs is dodgy

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Rummonkey

I just sent you a PM. 

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got my tinsel on

OP, if they persist with the 'the fence is dangerous' tale, tell them that you don't believe it is  but you will have no objection to them installing security fencing on their side of the boundary line to protect their workers if they feel they are at risk.

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MooGuru

Based on a few stories I've heard the camera might not be a bad idea - even if it is just peace of mind.

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