How to Handle Fence Disputes
Typically, fences built on a property line belong to both neighbors. But what if your neighbor installed a fence and failed to follow the property line, causing you to lose significant square footage in your backyard? A fence dispute can typically be easily resolved. However, they can quickly turn ugly. If you’re in the middle of a fence dispute, follow these steps.
Get a Professional to Find Your Property Lines
If you and your neighbor disagree about the location of the property line between your homes, hire a professional. A surveyor can show you the exact location of a property line, meaning you can back up your claim with documented evidence.
Research Local Laws and Ordinances
If you still find yourself in a dispute, begin researching local property line ordinances. Property line laws vary by state and city. Before going any further, be sure you understand the laws regarding your situation.
Try to Reach an Agreement
Often, neighbors can resolve most disputes without going to court. A neighbor-to-neighbor agreement is the fastest and cheapest way to reach a solution. Once you reach an agreement, both parties need to sign a deed that details the perimeters of the land. An attorney can help you sign the deed, which will need to be filed with your county.
Use a Mediator
If you’re struggling to reach an agreement with your neighbor, consider using a mediator. Mediators can help you resolve the dispute in a low-cost, low-stress way. Check with your local courthouse to find mediators in your area.
Hire an Attorney
Is your neighbor refusing to seek a solution? It may be time to get an attorney involved. When you hire an attorney, he or she can send a letter to your neighbor on your behalf. This lets your neighbor know you are serious about pursuing further legal action.
As a last result, file a lawsuit. Lawsuits can be costly and time consuming, with some fence disputes lasting months or years. If you decide to seek legal action, be sure to work with an attorney familiar with property dispute cases.
Texas Fence and Iron works to avoid these types of fence disputes. Our contractors confirm the location of the property line before installation. Interested in working with us? Contact us to discuss your new fence.