Are you involved in a dispute with a neighbor over a fence? Here are the factors a court will look at.
In fence disputes, one of the primary factors at the heart of the disagreement is the determination of property boundaries. Uncertainty or disagreement regarding the exact location of property lines can lead to conflicts between neighbors. Establishing the correct boundary lines is essential, and various methods can be used to accomplish this.
Property surveys conducted by licensed surveyors can provide precise measurements and help resolve disputes. Deeds and historical documents can also provide valuable information regarding property boundaries. Additionally, local zoning regulations and land-use restrictions may play a role in determining the location of property lines.
Another significant factor in fence disputes is the ownership of the fence itself. Determining who installed the fence and who maintains it can impact the responsibilities and costs associated with repairs, replacement, and upkeep.
Ownership of the fence may be established through property records or agreements between neighbors, such as previously written agreements or verbal understandings. If there is no clear documentation regarding fence ownership, state laws and local ordinances may come into play to determine ownership rights.
Fence Appearance and Regulations
The appearance and compliance of the fence with local regulations are significant factors that can contribute to fence disputes. Many areas have specific requirements regarding the type, height, materials, and appearance of fences. These regulations are often in place to maintain a consistent aesthetic and ensure the safety and functionality of fences within a community.
If a fence violates local regulations, it may need to be modified or removed, leading to disagreements between neighbors as one may want to force the other to remove their fence. In such cases, it becomes essential to review local zoning and building codes to determine the specific requirements for fences in the area.
Shared Use and Access
Fence disputes can also arise when a fence is situated between two properties or separates common areas. Issues of shared use and access can be significant points of contention. Disagreements may revolve around rights of access, maintenance responsibilities, or the obstruction of views and natural light.
In some cases, there may be existing agreements or easements that define shared use and access. If there is still a dispute, mediation or real estate litigation can be helpful in reaching a solution that respects the rights and interests of all parties involved.
Reach out to a real estate litigation lawyer near you to learn more.