fencelines, surveys and neighbors. Advice??
This is a long one...x-post from Patios/Decks Forum.
I started talking to my next-door neighbor about extending my existing fence line that runs from our detached garage along my driveway, on her side of our property. I want to extend it another 20 feet so my kids can use the space...we live in a pretty urban place where I can't let them run around the front yard (it's also a pretty busy street.) Basically, I just want to fence in more of my driveway, not touch her property at all.
She is very resistant to the idea, and at one point threatened to sue me. That's when I stopped communicating with her and called a surveyor. Before my guys had a chance to come, she put in some new irrigation along the driveway and a bunch of new plants next to her house.
The surveyors came and marked out the property Friday, and I returned from a weekend trip to a note on my front door threatening to sue if I put up a fence. I was also threatened with pit bulls and a dog run in that space (in the 3 feet she has on that side of her house.) Finally, I was threatened with a regular dose of obscenity-laden rap through her windows.
The really crazy thing is, now that she's landscaped it, it looks really nice and I was planning to put in a 3-foot picket that the kids can't get through but you can see through...you wouldn't even be able to see the fence from her windows...her house sits a bit higher than mine. The impact on her is really incredibly small.
So the marker on the sidewalk seems to indicate that not only do I have plenty of room for a fence, but that her new irrigation is now on MY property. And I'd have to remove it to get my fence on my property. Sigh.
I'm now thinking that the picket's a bad idea in the end, since I have no idea what kind of care she's going to take of that space once I put up the fence. I saw her today and tried to speak to her, but she ignored me. I asked if she wasn't speaking to me and she spat "YES!" and stormed into her house...so having a grownup to grownup dialogue about this is apparently not an option.
Any advice from those of you with neighbor problems on how I should navigate this? City code says I can go as high as 8 feet, but that just seems awful and unnecessary.
Also, is there any time limit on encroachment that would give her the right to keep the irrigation on my property? Meaning, if I can get the fence in without removing her irrigation, do I ever lose the option to have her move it?
Thanks in advance, guys!