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To be finding it difficult adjusting to life in a mid terrace with shared access yard

(38 Posts)
Notalone Sun 09-Oct-11 12:31:47

After separating from my ex I have had to downsize to a much smaller property in a different village to where I was before. I love my little house because everything in it is mine and organised the way I like it. I also love the new village I live in. However I am finding the actual set up difficult. My yard has right of way to the house next door to access their property. However next doors 5 year old DD has been using my yard as an extension of her own garden. When I first moved in she would walk blatantly into my house at all times of the day asking what I was doing, could she go upstirs, could she play with my dog etc. I counted 15 times in 2 hours the first weekend I was here. I nipped it in the bud immediately and told her she could no longer just walk in. She would have to knock and if I didn't answer it was because I was busy. She then started playing in my garden with my dog which at the time was the lesser of the 2 evils. However tbh it it really starting to annoy me now. I have had to ask her not to play in my garden when my washing is out because she would throw dog toys around the yard and my washing would end up with mucky marks on it which she usually adheres to but she has now started throwing cans from her families recycling into my garden for my dog to catch. I have told her not to do this as my dog could cut his moutn and also because she doesn't pick them back up again . She also constantly leaves my gate open and my dog escaped twice last week. I have spoken to the mother about the gate but it is still often left open. I feel like I am constantly on this girls case but at the same time I am constantly annoyed. I just want my yard to be my yard and for my dog to be safe when he is out there.

Also the house on the other side have 4 ds's including a baby who is about 3 months old. The baby has started waking up at 4am and screaming constantly for ages. The family leave him to cry often until he falls back to sleep by himself or sometimes if the baby doesn't stop crying they will eventually get up and see to him. I am about to start a new job with a 5.30am start to the day and really do not want to be woken at 4am for an hour on top of my hideously early start. I know I probably can't say anything in this case but I just want some sleep and in the other situation some privacy.

I know there is probably no solution to these issues. Now winter is on its way next doors DD will probably be out less and the baby will eventually get older and stop crying so much at night. To make me feel better though does anyone have any stories of coping with shared access yards etc. smile

whathappenedtom Sun 09-Oct-11 12:40:02

Speak to the girl's parents. What do they need access for?

The baby situation, don't think there is a solution. How dod you know they leave him to cry?

MilicentBystander Sun 09-Oct-11 12:42:39

I know it's tricky but why did you buy a house with a shared garden if you have a dog?

HecateGoddessOfTheNight Sun 09-Oct-11 12:42:41

can you fence off behind the access path, so that they have access but not access to the garden itself, iyswim? creating a corridor for them to pass through, but no access to the rest of the garden?

Notalone Sun 09-Oct-11 12:44:07

They have right of way to access their own yard whathappenned and the other family have their bedroom next to mine. Their bed makes a loud noise when they get in and out of it which I can also hear and when they do get out of bed I can hear them walking across the floor because they have some sort of hard flooring in there.

Birdsgottafly Sun 09-Oct-11 12:45:37

As you say the baby will soon grow out of it. It could be worse they could have teenagers who slam doors late etc, or they could play the guitar, very badly, as a hobby, it is rare that you get a perfect neighbour.

Can you not put a lock on your gate, i have had to do this to make sure that my dog cannot be let out by a window cleaner etc, by accident.

Notalone Sun 09-Oct-11 12:46:34

Its not a bought house but a rented house. When I first moved here I had to find a property that accepted housing benefit and that had good schools for DS as I had just finished uni and didn't have a job. This was the only one that fit that criteria. Money is too tight atm to make any alterations. The previous tenant lived here for 6 years and had just informed me when he collected his mail that he had identical problems with the dd and gate being left open

Notalone Sun 09-Oct-11 12:49:46

I must say they are not awful neighbours at all. They are very pleasant and the DH often takes my bin out for me (after filling it with their surplas rubbish hmm) and brings it back in for me. Perhaps I am being a bit miserable about this but I really love my privacy and don't want another child constantly in my outside area. Sometimes I want to have a cup of tea out there without being asked what I am doing, why I am doing it and being told to inspect her new shoes / coat / school book etc

Birdsgottafly Sun 09-Oct-11 12:50:07

Fit a lock and give the adult of the house a key, they are the one's that need access. I have had to do this for peace of mind so my dog cannot get out.

Notalone Sun 09-Oct-11 12:50:17

Oh, and their dog is also often in my garden and sometimes comes in an pees in my house angry

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Sun 09-Oct-11 12:50:58

I think you should send a polite note to the parents saying that whilst they do have shared acess, it is only 'access', not an extension of their own property. If they leave the gate open, you will speak to the landlord about it because that is a breach of the arrangement. Do take it up with your landlord if it happens again and in the meantime, look out for somewhere else just in case.

Thank goodness you're only renting - I bought a house like this and sold it as soon as I could, same reasons as yours.

Fences make good neighbours... never a truer word spoken.

giyadas Sun 09-Oct-11 12:51:37

Is it just the dd leaving the gate open? If so is there any way you could move the catch on the gate so she can't open it herself?

Notalone Sun 09-Oct-11 12:52:54

A lock might be an idea but their DD's often play out on the street and are constantly in and out. I can see them making a fuss or giving their DD's the key for it just to be left open anyway. I will definitely think about this though because it would stop my dog escaping hopefully

buzzskeleton Sun 09-Oct-11 12:56:13

Get a springy thing on your gate that pulls it closed automatically.

moomaa Sun 09-Oct-11 13:00:29

Is the gate a full height one? Could you put a big bolt on that only an adult could reach?

Do you mean their DDs access the street to play via their property? They should be going via their front door. I thought the unwritten rule in these situations was access for bins/workmen/large stuff that needs to go in the garden only. Actually we viewed a house like this and I think they said it was written in the deeds that was what access was for.

GumballCharm Sun 09-Oct-11 13:01:30

I would just keep saying "Play in your own garden now please." and stand waiting till she went....if she tried to hang about I would reiterate..."Off you go now please!" in a friendly tone.

The more you do it the more she will realise.

Why on earth are the parents letting her do this?? It would annoy me too.

moomaa Sun 09-Oct-11 13:01:50

I meant via your property.

I like the springy gate idea.

GumballCharm Sun 09-Oct-11 13:03:15

The girl has her OWN yard...just keep kicking her out right away.

GumballCharm Sun 09-Oct-11 13:04:04

My Mum also uses pots of shrubs to create barriers....even if they an be got past, it's a subliminal message.

Kick2down Sun 09-Oct-11 13:05:25

Buzzskeleton got in there before me - fit a self-closing hinge on the gate, and a catch at the top that the DD cannot reach. Cheap and easy to install!

Birdsgottafly Sun 09-Oct-11 13:05:54

I would use the excuse that your dog is due 'in season' to try to put a stop to this, i have safety gates fitted, so my doors can be open but the dog cannot get out (or in your case in).

I would have words, if the previous tenant didn't mind they may not realise that you do, so don't let things build up and fall out about it.

If you are coming off HB, you will have the choice to move, problems like these don't go on forever.

Notalone Sun 09-Oct-11 13:10:40

The springy gate thing is a great idea too. There used to be one which is still there but it is broken, also the catch is a bit dodgy as the door needs to be pulled shut for it to catch. However this dd often just leaves the gate wide open without attempting to close it. Money us stupidly tight atm as I am bout to go for a month with barely any money due to coming off JSA and being paid monthly. After this I will need to pay to get it fixed. The gate itself is a low one so I can't lift the actual catch itself.

The access has been there for years as far as I know. The front rooms in these houses are tiny so most people (myself included)don't use the front doors at all as space is at a premium and furniture etc will not allow the door to open fully.

I have so far taken Gumballs idea and literally stood there until she has gone home. I am so so sick of having to do this though. And yes, It is not really her fault. If it were my DS there is no way I would allow him to do this but I really don't want to have to fall out with the neighbours either by having to have words, no matter how diplomatic these words might be

makachu Sun 09-Oct-11 13:11:02

I think you're being a little bit miserable about the whole thing...the little girl is only 5. I think you should probably put some sort of lock on the gate and maybe give the parents a key for it so they can have access but the little girl can't come in whenever she feels like it. I don't think there's much you can do about the baby next door other than get some earplugs. The soft expanding foam ones are good. I use ear fit ones against the people in the flat downstairs from us who put their acid house music on at 4 o clock when they come home from the clubs and leave it on until 4 the next day.

How can the dog just come in and pee in your house? Is your door open all the time? From my point of view you are quite lucky to live in an area where on housing benefit you can get a house with a garden at all, I'd love to even have access to a shared garden but up here flats are more usual than houses unless you're lucky unfortunate enough to qualify for a council house... that doesn't necessarily mean you're being unreasonable, but I think a little bit of perspective might be a good thing. I sort of think that if privacy is that important to you, you should maybe just stay in but I get the feeling that anyone who is used to having a whole lot of outdoor space all to themselves as normality would say that I'm being MASSIVELY unreasonable.

Notalone Sun 09-Oct-11 13:12:10

The old tenant did mind. My dog is a male so the in season thing might not work cos he has a very obvious willy grin

GumballCharm Sun 09-Oct-11 13:13:14

It won't last...if you keep standing there till' she leaves, she will soon realise it's more bother than it's worth

SHes not being miserable Makachu the child isn't hers! Why should she have her on her property all day???

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