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Should my neighbor help pay to replace our boundary line fence?

Imagine a winter snow flurry took down the boundary line fence between you and your next-door neighbor's property last year. You've been wanting to replace the fence and it seems only natural that your neighbor should help foot the bill. However, you can't agree how high the new fence should be, what color to paint it or what materials should be used to build it. Can you turn to the law for support?

If you're in a situation like this, you might want to learn a little bit more about fences and neighborhood boundary line disputes. In some cases, all of your and your neighbor's disagreements will be solved by reviewing your local fence ordinances. These will usually offer parameters for the following:

  • How high it can be
  • Where you can install it
  • The materials you can build it with
  • What it looks like

When fences are built on boundary line like yours, it's important to talk things over with your neighbor because it's a cost the two of you should share under the law. Both of the home owners have responsibilities regarding the upkeep, maintenance and repair of the fence depending which side of the fence their respective properties lie on. Furthermore, the neighbors may not remove the fence until they acquire the other neighbor's permission. However, neighbors can cut and trim trees from their neighbor's yard if the limbs and branches come over the top of the fence and into the that neighbor's yard -- as long as the trimming doesn't hurt or endanger the tree.

Do you have a boundary line fence dispute with your neighbor? If you handle the dispute in a legally appropriate manner, you will have much better chance of success.

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