neighbors stubs and damages all my trees on property line

chinchetteApril 30, 2010

My neighbor cuts my trees on the property line- stubs them. This is legal but you are not supposed to be able to do this to the point of damaging the tree. But how could you enforce this? Who decides that the tree is damaged? Do I have to wait 5 years for it to die?

What has occurred is the tree is unbalanced with the bulk of it now over my house. I am trying to prevent them from cutting the remaining section that hangs over their yard. The neighbor has told me that she CAN NOT have ANY branches over her driveway. We are not speaking. Today I ran off her gardener who was on my property, climbing my tree so that they could remove branches overhanging their driveway. I volunteered in the past to trim the trees and pay for it myself, but she has refused my offer in favour of tree hackers. What would you do?

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That you have either planted or allowed a tree to grow on your property line has caused problems for your neighbor. Been there with a neighbor's live oak tree that eventually started laying on my roof after years of paying to having it cut back. After presenting her with an estimate of $500 to have limbs removed from my roof, she opted to have the tree removed. When you have a tree growing on YOUR property line, that means at least half the tree is growing over your neighbor's property. I have absolutly no sympthy for you or your tree. Been there, done that!

    Bookmark   May 1, 2010 at 9:12AM
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In my state and my county you can legally cut the trees on the property line but you can't cause irreparable damage to the tree. I'm only looking for advice from anyone who knows how to stop irreparable damage, not looking for moral opinions or sympathy. You can vent against me but I'm really just wanting to know more about how this is handled legally.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2010 at 11:04AM
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I think I'd call a Professional Aborist and ask advice from that person. You'll be told to what extent the tree has been damaged and what additional damage would occur should further "hacking" take place.

Depending on what you learn, I suggest contacting a lawyer and having an official letter sent to your neighbor.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2010 at 5:03PM
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I suspect that the trees have already been damaged beyond redemption. There is no good way to trim a tree back to the property line without making it look hacked. The mistake was planting them on the property line to begin with. Always allow enough room to accomodate the full grown plant when placing them in your landscape.

Having said that, the deed is already done. They were planted, they did grow into the neighbors space and they have been hacked up. You can prolong this argument from now until the cows come home and these facts will not change. The situation will only escalate from here on. Do you want to spend the rest of your life or until you or the neighbor moves fighting this battle or do you want to settle it and get on with your life in a civilized manner? If your answer is getting on with your life, remove the trees and replace them with a nice privacy hedge that will recover from a bad haircut. You won't ever find a neighbor willing to put up with your trees messing up their property.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2010 at 7:04PM
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Why is everyone assuming the OP planted the trees on the property line? Couldn't they have been growing before development began in that neighborhood? And what if only 1/4 or less of the tree was on the property line, would you feel differently?

It seems to me that if the next door neighbor's gardener had to go on to the OP's property and climb her tree to cut branches then the tree may not be on the property line at all. It may be that the branches are overhanging the property line.

We have ordinances that protect against destruction of trees by improper cutting. We've had instances where the offending property owner had to reimburse the tree owner the estimated value of the tree and had to replace it with a sizable tree as well. I'm talking about $2000 as a fine.

I'm sorry,but IMO, there's got to be something a tad off with a neighbor that won't allow trimming to be done (for free) on branches that bother her because they're hanging over her driveway.

In addition, if the improper trimming has indeed left the tree unbalanced and the tree should fall and damage the OP's home/property I believe the neighbor would be held responsible for the damages.

I still think the OP should get a professional opinion and then consult a lawyer about notifying the neighbor about the potential damage that might occur because of the "hacking" and the fact she could be financially responsible for paying for it.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2010 at 8:51PM
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Number 1, this time of year, if the branches are cut properly, i.e. clean cuts and not jagged (allowing insects and disease) you can trim the tree back at least 1/3 rd with no damage other than looks. Number 2, if the tree is right on the property line, it's not just your tree, it belongs to both parties.

As for the legalities you are looking for, you can't bring legal action on someone because you suspect the tree MIGHT be damaged. You have to get proof. You have to engage a certified expert to determine the work has caused the tree to start dying. If your neighbor can prove the branches were encroaching on them and their free use of their property and presented a danger or stressful situation, then they had the right to take action.

I personally don't like branches hanging over my cars or house. Bird crap, which carries various diseases, sap getting on the car, damaging winds, lifting shingles and on and on etc., etc. In the area where I live, the utilities routinely and radically cut back branches all year long from utility lines. They've been doing it for years. In a lot of places it looks hideous but none of the trees have died. The municipality had them prove it wouldn't kill the trees before allowing them to do the cutting.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2010 at 10:15PM
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Thanks for the responses. Mona is right, its not really on the property line, and that is why they had to come over to my side to put a ladder up the tree to reach what they wanted to cut. Its the branches 50 feet up in the air that the neighbor doesn't like because she doesn't like leaves.

The main tree in question was here before the development went in. It looks to be about 60 years old. Its a neighborhood with many 100 year old oaks. The others trees in my yard were probably put there 26 years ago when the builder did the work, before my time. This is a development with many similar trees, ie: mature landscaping in a deed restricted development. There are rules that each house had to have a certain number of trees, and the city as well will not allow them to be cut down without replacing.

When you have small plots of land with fairly big houses, there really isn't any way to have a tree that is not going to have branches that go onto your neighbor's yard unless it is small specimen tree or a large bush. But people like to live here due to the mature landscaping, with lots of live oaks. Even my neighbor likes that feature, just not in her own or my yard. And I do understand that some people just don't like trees near their houses, but that doesn't compel me to strip all trees off my lot which, by the way the city would not allow. And its really not possible to trim every branch that could possibly project a little bit over her yard without making the trees totally unbalanced.

I like Monablair's advise- I talked to an arborist two years ago when the first damage was done. Its time to document the tree so that the rest of the portion that is in her back yard is not removed which would put it (and my home and family) at risk. A lawyer letter will probably be needed, and I'll have to have work done to salvage the Doctor Seuss job that was done to the extent that I can. Is there a particular type of arbourist needed for documenting the tree damage? And what type of lawyer?

    Bookmark   May 1, 2010 at 11:59PM
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You might also want to ask a Realtor --
Not that he/she would know anything about trees, but they ought to know the kinds of comments they hear from house-hunters shopping in that neighborhood. The mature trees contribute so much to the neighborhood's ambience that maiming your tree or causing it to die might lower your neighbor's proorerty value considerably. A Realtor might be willing to put a number on it and/or say so.

You might also want to have your arborist point out that an unhealthy tree is more likely to topple than a healthy, balanced tree. So by hacking at yours, your neighbor may be causing exactly what she's trying to avoid.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2010 at 11:35AM
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There's nothing worse than an inconsiderate neighbor who feels their encroachment on another person should be condoned. For some reason, some people feel they, their plant, animals and kids have some kind of right to another persons property. Then when a person finally gets tired of it and decides to make use of their own property, the encroacher decides they'll harass the person with legal action, gather some support from disinterested parties who live houses away. I'm sure they heard enough lip service "I'll get someone" that they got tired of waiting. They pay the mrtgage, the taxes, it's theirs. Why in the @#@%$^^ should they give it to someone else to use if they don't want to.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2010 at 3:26PM
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Hi Sweeby, nice to see you here. Yeh, I've had two arborists talk to the neighbor, and as I said, one that was there ready to do the work that day, but she refused.

She would not really care what a realtor thinks. She's nuked the 100 year old oaks in her yard also and it does not matter to her if my tree dies. Most of the homes in here (90% ) have mature shade trees that overlap property lines. The deed restrictions call for at least one shade tree, but she's already told me how anal that is and what A------'s the people from the city are.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2010 at 3:55PM
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windslam, I'm sure glad you're not our neighbor. You don't sound very friendly.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2010 at 8:00PM
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If you think being friendly gives someone else the right to sprawl into someone elses private space, then I'm glad I'm not your neighbor too. Unwanted plant life, animals, kids and whatever else someone wants to force on another is no different than loud music, whooping and hollering, the smell of animal fecal matter....anything that keeps someone from getting full use and enjoyment of their own property is not a friendly gesture and should not be met with one.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2010 at 8:49PM
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It's amazing how this post has evolved. Anyone else see it? The neighbor stubbed trees hanging over their driveway. OP claims to have consulted an Arborist 2 years ago but nothing was done. Offered to have branches cut back voluntarily but neighbor refused. They're your trees, why would you need your neighbors permission to cut them especially since they didn't want them there? The neighbor cut the branches, eliminating the danger to them and now you have the same problem, you fear the damage they may do to your property. The problem is, they're your trees and you want the consequences of your actions, or lack thereof, to be placed on someone else. What ever happened to personal accountability. Why is everything someone elses fault? First they're on the property line, now they're not. 2 years ago you made an offer and then abandoned it allowing the matter to get worse..trees do continue to grow. We're only hearing half of the story and it keeps changing. I'd love to hear the neighbors side of the story. You can bet there is a whole lot more to this than we here will know for sure. I've seen this've made an enemy of your neighbor, you are threatening legal action to further alienate the neighbor, it will be a long drawn out process and as in most cases such as this, your neighbor will find an arborist or other professional to prove there is no damage and the whole matter will go off into a black hole and what is left? 2 enemies. Why can't you apologize for your trees, pay someone to make whatever corrective action (which should have been done years ago in my opinion) needs to be done so you will be happy and have a good neighbor relationship? They're your trees, don't push the issue off on someone else, take responsibility for your own mistakes and correct them. The only person who will make out with so called legal action will be lawyers. The Courts will look for equal justice, it's your neighbors property, they have the say so what goes on there, they are your trees, you have the responsibility to care for them. Your neighbor took action to confirm their control of their property, now it's your turn to take responsibility of your property, not shove it on to someone else. I don't mean to be unkind but that's just the way it is, this is a democracy not socialism.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2010 at 9:41PM
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I have a similar, but very different, problem with my neighbors and I wish I could find a workable solution.

We built our home and have a huge grandfather oak standing in our back yard. This tree is about 60 years old and it is completely on our property, in fact it's 10' from the property line. We have a 10' high concrete/brick wall on our property line.

So, what's my problem? The tree branches need trimming.
4 years ago I called 2 professional arborists that agreed the tree branches were too long and too heavy to expect this tree to stand intact if we were hit with a bad storm. I approached our neighbors (A 10 unit Condo association) asking for permission to have my arborist go on their property to trim my tree's branches that were hanging over their back yard property. These branches extend about 25' over their property.

It would have been done at my expense with a guarantee that all would be cleaned up with no damage to their property and lawn. They said they wouldn't allow my people on their property. So all I could do was minor trimming on my side in order not to leave the tree unbalanced.

Guess what!! We had a bad storm; a huge branch that would have been trimmed back, cracked and fell. Part of my wall was crushed as well as a recreational boat we had resting against the wall.

We were upset to say the least. But being good neighbors we hired people to clean up the fallen branch on our side of the property line and had them clean up and haul away the branch and debris that fell on their property. We then had to pay for the repair to our wall as well.

These past few years we've asked for permission to trim the branches that overhang onto the condo property and our requests have always been denied.

As a last resort we have a family lawyer that sent a letter to their Association stating that should further damages to our property result from their unwillingness to cooperate with us, we would hold them financially responsible for the damages.

We have documentation of our communications with them as well as pictures of the tree taken over the past years.

So, were we wrong in contacting a lawyer and threatening court action? I don't think so.

Some neighbors, like the OP's and ours, are just plain nuts, mean and stubborn.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2010 at 10:19PM
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Yours is certainly way different. You were showing due diligence. For whatever reason... insurance, promised privacy to the condo tenants, contacted the wrong people etc., we don't know, permission was not granted. Once a dangerous situation was identified and the parties were legally contacted, they are aware of the consequences should further damage occur. It will become their responsibility if they impede correction of a dangerous or damaging situation. You did the right thing and I would shake your hand if I met you. If I were in a jury on a case like this, I would look favorably in your direction. Most reasonable people would.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2010 at 11:01PM
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>They're your trees, why would you need your neighbors permission to cut them especially since they didn't want them there?

Because her side could only be accessed by moving her car from her driveway and getting at them from her side of the fence. She didn't want them trimmed by a professional arborist because she doesn't agree with their opinions on what would or would not damage the tree.

After the hack job two years ago, a second arborist, the city arborist came out and spoke with her and warned her that if she cut more, it would compromise the tree, but she didn't agree, and this year cut the section he advised not to remove. There were only a few wisps left on her side of the fence by this time, but she preferred none. She just doesn't agree that it is causing damage. She has the right to trim the tree, but not to cause irreparable damage.

The purpose of my post was to find out if anyone knew how to prove irreparable damage, since it is not going to kill the tree the same year that it is cut. A point was made that she could find an arborist who had a different opinion, and that is true.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2010 at 7:20AM
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The trees are cut on her side now, it's a mute point at this stage. Why would you need her permission at this point to cut them? It doesn't make sense. All I see here is you want to force your issues on someone else. Get someone out there to shape up the trees and be done with it. This is the best time of the year, it gives the trees a whole season for them to shape up. 100 year old oaks are still very young trees. As mentioned before, you can cut them back by 1/3 with no damage to the tree at all unless the person doing the cutting chops them instead of cutting them.

Of course I'm aware of the point of your post as is everyone else. You should have done something years ago and didn't, your neighbor got tired of waiting for action to materialize and did something herself. You feel offended and are now looking for a way to get back at her. The same old same old..threaten with legal action, that'll show 'em. You are going to waste a lot of time and effort and not achieve what you are after. The lady obviously will fight back with just as much vigor, if not more, than you have put into this already. If you are 14 years old and feel you will live forever, then go for it. Otherwise, this will be a long drawn out affair and how much time on this earth do you have left where you can certainly find enjoyable instead of spiteful things to do.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2010 at 2:13PM
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Yawn, yawn. I'm out of here. Thanks Monablair for the advice.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2010 at 2:30PM
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Hahahahaha...shoooo, go away! You came here to lynch someone and gain support here for your witch hunt and you didn't get it. I'ts obvious you already are trying to rally your neighbors to pit neighbor against neighbor. You are the neighborhood trouble maker and you'll find out when push comes to shove, they'll back away from you. Your neighbor will fight you to the end. I admire her, she has spunk.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2010 at 6:08PM
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windslam, I don't know you and you might be a very nice person IRL, but why must you came across as such a bully here?

I don't see the OP as a trouble maker. She tried to get permission to go on the neighbor's property to properly trim the tree. She wasn't allowed. So what could she do? Her hands were tied and then the neighbor hacked the tree.

The questions are:

1. Does the tree look like it's stressed?

2. Will cutting the limbs on the OP's side restore balance to the tree?

3. Is this a new neighbor? Did she complain about the tree before the OP asked to trim the tree? or was the tree trimming the suggestion of the OP?

4. Has the 2nd city arborist come back to see the tree? When this arborist warned the neighbor against further cutting of the tree, what penalties were to be invoked if more cutting occurred?

Having the answers to these questions might change your opinion.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2010 at 9:33PM
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Post a picture of the hacked trees.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2010 at 8:33AM
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I think the neighbor refused to have someone cut because the hired help would not be as eager to cut as the neighbor would. The OP wants to save the tree and the neighbor doesn't. OBviously, the relationship(as well as the tree) is damaged as there is no communication allowed. The OP has fought for wanting the tree and the nieghbor does not want it. Why not just take it down? If it is unsightly, perhaps the neighbor will help with costs. Does the tree now threaten your property, OP? Life is about relationships and this one may not be salvageable. good luck

    Bookmark   May 4, 2010 at 1:25PM
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Since when does stating ones own opinion, especially when it is met by sarcasm from the op and equally met in response, being a bully? And you don't think it is friendly when someone stands up for themselves by a bully? Anyone who forces themselves onto another persons property and then tries to get neighbors against neighbors to justify it is the bully. Standing up for ones rights is not being a bully. No disrespect intended to you but, you seem to have your own set of rules as to how someone should think about this topic and if their thoughts don't agree with yours, they're bullys? I gave an opinion, never forced anything on anyone. The OP is trying to force something on someone else. It's my belief they are the bully.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2010 at 8:56PM
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windslam, I think each of us is entitled to an opinion. I happen to think that people can disagree without getting in someone's face. It's not your opinion/thoughts that I consider bullying, it's the way you addressed the OP. You just weren't very nice, that's all.

"Hahahahaha...shoooo, go away!" Wow! I don't think I've heard something like that since grade school.

Goodness, you don't like kids, animals, music, plants.... and who knows what else bothers you.

But to the point,
This neighbor had no right to go hire someone to go onto the OP's property and climb that tree in order to cut branches that extend from the tree trunk and hang over her driveway.

I believe if she wanted those branches cut she was entitled to hire someone with lift basket so the high branches could be reached while the equipment remained on her property and AS LONG AS what was cut was not over the adjoining property line and on the OP's property.

And, this cutting would have had to conform to the arborist's determination of what trimming would be allowed.

In this case, when the OP chased the gardner off of her property it seems to me she was sticking up for her rights as a property owner. Why does that make her guilty of bullying?

I'm not asking anyone to agree with how I feel about this topic. I've also not been deliberately rude to any poster.

The OP came here with a question. IMO, your saying that you thought she was in the wrong would have sufficed as a response. I just see things in a different way than you do. My world seems bright; yours seems dark.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2010 at 9:58PM
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Well Monablair,

The whole gist of the entire post was to rally support in this forum to lynch their neighbor. You obviously got sucked in. And only for you, no one else seems to want to be a part of that.

Your reading comprehension leaves a lot to be desired. But then again, I'm sure you are twisting the facts to meet your own agenda, just as the OP did. I smell a manipulator a mile away. I never said I didn't like kids (I have 4 of them). But you would never see any of mine running amok on other peoples property....which by the way is very disrespectful. The same with dogs and other animals, why should anyone have to walk through dog poo (I know, grade school talk) when someone is so disrespectful as to let their animals run amok on other peoples property. And I would never allow my plants, shrubbery, trees to get to the point where this one has. No matter who lived there, it would have been respectful from the very beginning to assume it was ok to let things get out of hand and hang over into a neighbors yard. If my own son lived next door, I would have enough respect for him not to let things like that get out of hand. But you Socialists don't see a thing wrong with invading someone elses property. And if that isn't enough, you'll go on a witch hunt and even try to get the government involved, in an attempt to have your way on someone elses property.

Wow, Ms Manipulator, you are really grasping at straws. Now you're just getting verbose and full of rhetoric. I could have used language much stronger than grade school language but didn't. Of course, I don't think the way you do so therefore I am wrong. Naturally, you have a script in your mind that people should follow and if they don't, then your righteous butt gets all upset, your way is better huh? You are way out of touch with reality.

And the OP became belligerent and sarcastic when just like you, they weren't hearing what they wanted to hear. Don't even come across as miss sweet and kind. You are as big a bully as anyone if you demand they think as you do.

You better realize, there are people who want what you have and if they can justify it, will take it by any means possible. If you don't take a stand for yourself and your property, luckily there are those who will do it for you. You might have to give them some time though, they're helping someone else right now, in Irak and Afghanistan.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2010 at 9:53PM
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"Socialist?" You gotta be kidding me! That's so far from what I am and what I believe!!!

We're getting off topic here, but let me clarify that I am not a "big government" person. I feel government is too intrusive. I want what I work hard for, and have saved for, and accumulated, to be mine; I don't want the government to share my stuff with others who haven't bothered to work hard. I believe in programs that offer hands up, not hand outs.

I'm not a fan of the current administration and don't like the direction our country is being taken.
My SIL is an Army Ranger..2 deployments in Iraq and 2 in Afganistan. I'm a Conservative, not Liberal, in political beliefs. So, I believe we may be more alike than you think.

You're right; I'm not always sweet and kind. But I have the guts to defend someone I think is being treated unfairly. I also don't mind telling someone that I don't agree with them, but I try to be polite and not make it personal.

I believe you have every right to say that you think the OP is wrong in what she's done and what she wants. I simply thought your choice of words was harsh. Again, it's not what you said, but how you said it.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2010 at 7:27AM
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You only see what you want to see. Everyone was polite but firm in their opinion. The OP evolved to being rude and obstinate. You didn't defend anyone in the opposition then, when that happened. As I stated, you warp the facts with rhetoric and manipulative information to justify your point. Considering how the OP was so cryptic and the facts kept changing, I almost would be tempted to conclude you are also the OP.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2010 at 5:19PM
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Nope, I'm not. Check the IP addresses if you like.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2010 at 8:01PM
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Chinchette, if there is an ordinance against cutting down trees and your neighbor has already cut down all of her trees, can't you report her for that and for the damage she has done to your tree? Doesn't your area enforce their ordinances?

I would have called the police if my neighbor had sent a workman into My yard to "trim" My tree. That woman must be crazy!

Just as an FYI, our neighbor has a willow oak that is immense. It is about ten feet inside the property line but branches fall onto our property/flower bed. Since we needed to have them trimmed, we obtained her permission and hired a professional. It was her tree, and technically she should have paid for it, but the falling branches did not bother her, so we felt that morally it was our obligation (plus we suspected she could not easily afford it.)

What your neighbor did was sneaky and bizarre. If she does not like trees, she should not have brought a house in an area filled with mature trees that cannot be cut down, per city ordinance.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2010 at 10:27PM
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colorcrazy, it's good to know someone else thinks the OP's neighbor is nuts.

You did a good thing by trimming the branches for your neighbor. People like you are what make a community friendly and welcoming.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 8:45AM
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Interesting enough, all the anti-neighbor folks assume there must be some city ordinance to prevent offended neighbors from trimming limbs hanging over their property. There seldom is and the police have other matters with which to deal. IMO, one of the most insedious problems is a neighbor's tree growing where you do not want a tree such as over a pool (in my case), a roof (in my case), or a driveway. Now, if an offending limb falls on your car, you are going to have to deal with your insurance because the offending neighbor has NO responsibility in the matter. The auto insurance is going to balk, asking why you didn't trim the tree so it would not fall on your car or roof or in your pool.

The OP claims she would have paid to have the offending tree trimmed but evidently not to the extent required by the neighbor. All I can say is that I have been there and finally gave my neighbor the estimate for removing live oak limbs from my roof. It was her decision to remove the tree.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 11:08AM
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texas, we have no county ordinances preventing offended neighbors from trimming branches that overhang pools, roofs, etc. provided the trimming is permitted by a County arborist and is trimmed properly in order not to damage the tree. In fact, it is considered the responsiblity of the offended neighbor to do so.

I'm confused. If you have no ordinance to prevent you from trimming branches overhanging your roof, why didn't you do that?

In our county, it would have been next to impossible to remove a large tree just because branches are hanging over a roof, pool, etc. The tree has to be examined and deemed unhealthy and near death.

Then, if removal is permitted, a certain # of replacement trees has to be planted on the property to compensate for the "green" that was removed. If large tree is removed without proper permitting and the owner is reported, sizable fines are imposed.

There was a large healthy tree standing 8 feet from a neighbor's home's front porch. The roots were impacting a front yard kneewall, the porch and driveway, and the branches were hanging over the roof.

No removal permit was granted, so he did an unauthorized removal, knowing full well the implications of his actions. He was fined $16,000 and had to plant numerous trees on his property in addition to the fine.

Question.....In the event that your neighbor would not have removed the tree and if she did not wish to pay to remove the offending branches, what would your next step have been?

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 11:35AM
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Monoblair, Just another reason I live in Texas!

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 12:01PM
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yep! They're really into saving the trees here.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 3:01PM
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Tex, I'm with you.

Call a tree moving company and move it to a more suitable location. I've seen them move some pretty big trees. Shouldn't be too much of a problem after they get this one hacked down to size. Certainly couldn't cost more than $16,000.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 6:44PM
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Interesting enough, all the anti-neighbor folks assume there must be some city ordinance to prevent offended neighbors from trimming limbs hanging over their property. There seldom is and the police have other matters with which to deal.

The police don't handle that. At least not in towns in this area (my own, family's or where rental property is located). It's the Town Code Enforcer who handles it. That's what they get paid to do. My mother's town has strict tree codes (well, they're ultra strict about everything.) If a property owner's tree is overhanging a fence or property line, it can be trimmed back by neighbor providing it is: in danger of touching a building or wires, impeding growth of neighbor's own landscaping, or has potential to do some kind of structural damage on neighbor's premises (fence, buildings, etc.) However, neighbor cannot trim tree in such a way that it will bring on disease, poor growth habit or death. If in doubt, contact the code enforcer for an inspection.

I'd suggest you look into that angle, chinchette. If you walk into your town hall, you should freely be given a copy of the code/ordinance that addresses your situation.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 10:43PM
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My neighbor's tree hung over my property line. When I put my new fence up I cut the offending branch. I'd asked her time and again to do it and she refused. So I cut it. Otherwise the fence would not have been straight.

She screamed at me and called me all sorts of names. I wouldn't care about it hanging over except that it drops tons of berries that stain, and make new baby trees everywhere in my gardenbeds.

Windslam, I agree that kids, trees, poop, etc. can really strain neighborly relations. We have a neighbor who allows her dogs to poop in our gardenbeds going down our driveway. She actually walks up our driveway so her dog can poop, and then she leaves it. The nerve!! Another neighbor allows their kids to ride up and down our driveway. Which I can't say I really mind, except that they can't be older than three or four and are unsupervised, they run over our plants, make a lot of noise and don't ask if they can do it. I think it's only polite to ask if you can play in someone else's yard.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2010 at 12:53PM
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Yes, and if one of those kids falls and comes up hurt and bleeding, guess who the parents are going to hold responsible. Suggest you bag up the dog poop, take it to the offending neighbor and politely state, "I think you forgot to pick this up". She may think twice about letting her darlings do it again in your beds. When I walk our two Welsh Corgis, I always take a couple of plastic grocery bags, pick up any accidents and carry it home for disposal.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2010 at 7:08AM
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"Other peoples" dogs are a problem everywhere. I read where one complex in a city (I forget where) are actually considering requiring tenants to submit their dogs to DNA testing. Then when the offending land mine is discovered, the DNA will be checked and the offending animal identified and the owner fined, in addition to being billed for the clean up. These jerks have been letting their animals do their thing in hall ways, elevators and community property.

I had a German Shepherd and a Black Lab. at one time and did exactly as texasredhead mentions with the plastic bags. It's so easy to do and quite courteous and considerate of others.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2010 at 11:17PM
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If we're talking about the same scenario, the situation you refer to was in Baltimore City. The place is a luxury condo complex. It reflects the whole scenario of this post, people see no problem encroaching on others. They'll shake the sand onto your blanket as long as it gets it off theirs.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2010 at 7:52PM
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After reading about 3 threads regarding neighbors and fences and now this one, I'm glad I live in the middle of the woods with no one even in shouting distance, with all my trees that are able to drops limbs and leaves wherever the h*ll they want to. They don't bother me and neither does the bird poo that falls wherever the bird decides to poo! Now, the frogs tend to get on my nerves, especially after it rains and they decide to have a party and the noise is pretty annoying, but that's country life for you I suppose! I guess I should be grateful that they are frogs and not humans!

    Bookmark   May 31, 2010 at 8:26PM
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Glad to see this link finally died. What a bunch of weirdos. The question could have been answered in one reply.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 4:30PM
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