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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 9325
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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There is a fence separating my and my neighbours houses, the

Resolved Question:

There is a fence separating my and my neighbours houses, the fence is attached to the back of my house, so that a part of the back wall of my house is in their garden. The supports of the fence are on my side of the fence. Also a window in my living room sits on their side of the fence facing their garden.
I am not sure who is liable for the upkeep of the fence which is in considerable disrepair and if I have any say in the attachment of the fence to my house ?
The distance between the houses is only about 10 ft.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

Whether you have the “good side” or the “bad side” of the fence does not indicate ownership. If there is no proof of who put the fence up and if it’s on the boundary, then it is likely to be a joint liability. The neighbour is entitled to let it fall down if he doesn’t want to spend money on it and you are entitled to repair it but you can’t actually do anything without his consent.

Hence, provided the neighbour agrees, you would be able to replace the fence on the boundary but if he does not agree, you would have to offset the fence over to your side. It depends whether he is just being awkward or not.

If the fence is attached to your wall and it has been there for over 20 years without consent or objection, then there will be an easement for the fence attachment.

If it hasn’t been there for 20 years and there is no specific even mentioning the deeds, then you can require it to be removed if the neighbour owns the fence which, for what you have described, doesn’t appear to be the case.

Can I clarify anything for you?

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Best wishes.

FES.

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