Hi, just want to know where I stand on this. I recently had a new dividing fence erected between semi-detached properties. The fence posts were concreted in on the same line as the original wire fence and the rails and slats were put on the neighbours side. He says that I have taken some of his garden as the fence now looks to be a few inches his side of the midline, however, that's only because the slats are on his side - which I understand is the usual practice. I can see his point though and wondered if putting slats on my side too would be acceptable or do I need to have the fence moved so the smooth edge of the fence lies on the midline between the houses?
Suggest you get your neighbours agreement that if the rails and slats are put on your side they will find this acceptable.
Conventionally the good face of a fence is always fixed so that the posts are on the fence owners side. What is important is what it says in your Deeds.
My deeds say that "divisional fences walls etc between adjoining properties shall be maintained by the disponees and the adjoining proprietors jointly in all time coming".
It seems correct to me that the posts should be on the midline, however the fence is very sturdy so he has 5 inches on his side of the line while I only have 2 inches of post.
Although doubling the fence i.e. putting more rails and slats on my side will show the fence to be in the middle, it will seriously impact on the the light penetration towards his side, [the gardens slope upwards so there is an issue of light restriction to the windows]. I am sure he won't want that, although I could offer to double only the first metre down by the house where it won't restrict the light and put wire on my side the rest of the way. I had planned to grow cordon fruit trees on the fence so would have been putting wire there anyway.
I never intended to encroach on his garden and so if the law states that the fence should be moved, I'll have to do that - the fencer will not be happy as the fence is very strongly constructed and concreted in!
You and your neighbour are jointly responsible for the fence so if you paid for the fence your neighbour has gained.
"however the fence is very sturdy so he has 5 inches on his side of the line while I only have 2 inches of post" That is rather naughty and your neighbour has a right to complain. Remove the slats and rails and have them refitted so that the rails are fitted on your side and are cut into the posts. Fit the slats on your neighbours side of the rails - they will then be between the posts and on the line of the original fence.
Do get your neighbours agreement with whatever you propose.
Thanks for your advice, it's a great idea.
My fencer is coming at the weekend to assess things and I will certainly pass on your suggestion. It sounds like the fairest, and least costly option.
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