If the saying goes, “Good fences make good neighbors”, is there one about ugly fences? With spring arriving one of these days (and let me just point out that we haven’t even been “teased” by warm weather yet, which is really unusual for Chicago), we’re starting to plan our yard and garden.
One of the first things on the list is our fence. On one side of our yard and running between the house and garage, the PO installed a 7-foot cyclone fence with those green-and-white aluminum strips that weave diagonally in the chain link. Apparently he was mad at the previous owners of that house, so he had the fence installed.
Problem is, he didn’t install it on the property line—it’s about 1-1/2 feet in from the property line. Yes, he basically allowed the neighbor to encroach on his property, and it was his own doing! On top of that, he had the fence installed from the corner of the house to the corner of the garage, so we couldn’t walk around the house because of our own fence.
The neighbors have subsequently filled in the rest of their yard with similar fencing (but on their property line).
Last summer Pete let them know that we would be removing our fence. They were not happy to hear that, and I’m sure I wouldn’t have been either.
I feel bad that they have a small yard, but I’m not willing to give up part of our yard, even for a couple of feet. And if we don’t do something about it, then we’re essentially accepting it and I don’t want it to become a legal encroachment issue.
We’re going to be living here for a long time, and I also don’t want to have problems with our neighbors. So I suggested to Pete that since we’re going to plant Arborvitae to screen their yard anyway, why don’t we yank out our fence as planned, but offer it to the neighbors so that they can install it in its proper place on their property line? They still probably won’t be happy about it, but doesn’t it sound like a win-win solution? I’m not crazy about cyclone fences, but I have to live with it. At least it’d be better than the double-combo Cyclone-Privacy fence that we used to live next to!