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To ask our neighbours to put their fence posts on their side of the fence.

(68 Posts)
ClaireyFairy82 Thu 04-Feb-10 09:21:04

We live on a hill and it's often very windy. The fence between my neighbours property and ours was installed very badly before we even moved in so it was no surprise to us when it blew down at the beginning of November. In fact it was so windy that the fence post snapped.

We kept asking them to replace it as on the deeds it indicates that it is their fence and I was sure it would be more to their benefit than ours as they have three cats and a pet pig and we have a dog. It’s taken since them months to replace it but finally while I was out yesterday the new fence was erected. The original fence had posts in between the panels, so the new fence is of a much better quality. But to my surprise the fence posts are on my side, meaning that they have a lovely flush fence and we have the posts. I was always under the impression that the fence posts were put on the side of ownership, as they need to be on your land.

I don’t know what to do. Should I mention it to them? AIBU to want them to take the fence out again and install it with the posts on their side. Or should I just lump it?

Blackduck Thu 04-Feb-10 09:23:57

I think technically you are right - fenceposts should be on the side of person who owns the fence, but not sure what I would do about it.....just wish my neighbour would get his bl**dy landlord to mend the one that is currently blocking my alley....

Crapweasel Thu 04-Feb-10 09:32:21

I don't think that the fence posts do need to be on the neighbour's side - just, as you say, on the neighbour's land.

If you google "featheredge fences" you'll come across lots of references to it being "accepted practice", "good will" to offer the neighbours the good (flat) side of the fence but I don't believe it's enforceable by law - basically they can do what they like on their own land as long as it's not too high etc.

We installed a featheredge fence last summer and the neighbours have the better side. It does rankle a bit that they got the better deal out of a £1500 fence but neigbourly relations seemed more important.

That said, perhaps your neighbours didn't know. People often rely on what the tradesmen tell them.

morningpaper Thu 04-Feb-10 09:33:39

Fences are a NIGHTMARE

you really need to just install your own fence a few inches on your own side probably

ImSoNotTelling Thu 04-Feb-10 09:40:02

it is the "done thing" to give the neighbours the good side of "your fence" and it useful for people later to see who owns what.

Fences cost a fortune though don't they? So I think they're pretty unlikely to do anything about it. So asking will simply put their noses out of joint and not get you anywhere IYSWIM

Rhuidean Thu 04-Feb-10 09:43:50

Grow something up it to hide the posts?

ClaireyFairy82 Thu 04-Feb-10 09:52:30

They had the insurance pay for the fence so if i put one up on my side technically I'm paying and losing land. Well as the posts are on my side I'm losing land anyway. They did have it installed by a fancing company who you would think would know it's not the 'done thing' and they must have been trampling all over my garden to install it (grrr). It's just so annoying. Why can't people just do thing properly.

psychomum5 Thu 04-Feb-10 09:55:06

I am not going into the why's and what-nots of where there 'good side' should be, I am not legal minded for that, but am confused.

if someone is fitting a fence, is it not easier to fit it with the flush/flat/prettyier side facing you, so you can whack it and attach it to the posts, and so, if you are fitting it and standing on one peice of land, (ie, the land of the people paying you), they therefore get the flat/prettier side.

and if the neighbours are out, and you fit it from the other side (ie, on their land), you might then fence yourself into a garden with no escape.

forgive me if I sound fick......I am in hospital and my brian might well be in my head (proven by cat scanwink), it just doesn;t mean it is working on all cylinders!!

EcoMouse Thu 04-Feb-10 09:57:50

I was under the impression that whoever payed for the fence was entitled to the 'good' side. Some of my current neighbours have payed for the fencing surrounding their whole garden so that they can have the good side without quibble.

Regardless, the posts of their fence should be within the boundary of their land, absolutely. It shouldn't encroach on your land at all.

LoveBeingAMummy Thu 04-Feb-10 10:01:23

Agree with eco, the posts are set regardless of which side the fence goes on, surely they used the old holes rather then digging new ones

Pancakeflipper Thu 04-Feb-10 10:05:11

I also understand it to be if you are paying you get the nice side of the fence and that sounds fair enough to me.

If they have moved it onto your land and not the boundary then you can get them to move it.

ImSoNotTelling Thu 04-Feb-10 10:15:24

Another example of where cash trumps tradition. Great.

Looking at my parents fence, which is a good example as their boundary is next to the pavement. Obvuously they make the fence with the posts on their side, with the pretty side facing out onto the pavement, as that is the right and proper thing to do, it being a public highway and all.

DoingTheBestICan Thu 04-Feb-10 10:16:58

Boundaries are a bloody nightmare,we had a brick wall built at great expense at the front of our house & the dividing wall between us & our neighbours we had built slightly on our land as we didnt want the neighbours to screw trellis into it or paint it.

We left a small trellis fence up to show where the boundary is.

They knew we had done this for that very reason as we went round & told them,now they have removed the boundary markings,thrown them away & slung a load of mud up against the wall so it is now going damp & plan to grow things up against it.

I am planning on going around again when the snow has cleared to tell them to put it back as it was.

posieparker Thu 04-Feb-10 10:18:57

If you don't want to see their fence then put your own up. When our neighbours put up a new fence i never thought that they should make our side better than theirs....we just ised their posts, with their permission, to hold a some wires to hold some new plants.

EcoMouse Thu 04-Feb-10 10:22:48

Yes, ImSo, I agree. It's quite sad really.

I do remember my grandad explaining (when I was a nosey inquisitive youngster) that the owner of each fence should have the posts showing, meaning that everyone had one post side and one 'good' side. This was based on manners rather than entitlement though and in the OP's case, 'though she's entitled to have the posts moved off her land, she isn't necessarily entitled to the 'good' side.

hbfac Thu 04-Feb-10 10:23:28

I thought it was the done thing to put the fence posts facing the people that own the fence too, ie. not you in this instance. We've just put up a fence that we have responsibility for and the posts most definitely face us.

I don't think it is the case that you pay, so you get the "pretty" side. The opposite, I think!

You must be able to either google this or 'phone the council planning dept. or something.

We've also just been through a lot of party-wall stuff with our other neighbours, and I had lots of help and advice posting in the legal section of mn. So you could try asking over there.

ImSoNotTelling Thu 04-Feb-10 10:29:29

Yes eco.

Although in a lot of cases people have never heard of these "old fashioned" courtesys, and I have no idea how you rectify that.

havoc Thu 04-Feb-10 10:30:54

Are the posts actual in your garden, or just 'looking' at you?. If they are on your land, do they take up that much space?

I think you're right that the 'nice' side should face outwards, that is, on your side. But, is it worth bad feeling and at least you now have a fence.

But I do agree it is a PITA. My mum has had so much trouble with a neighbour, who over the years, has moved a fence more and more into her garden. In the end she paid for a brick wall to be built on the orginal boundary. It didn't go down too well. {grin]

posieparker Thu 04-Feb-10 10:40:35

Just wondering how one would erect a fence pretty side out without trampling all over the neighbours garden?

ClaireyFairy82 Thu 04-Feb-10 10:52:47

I dont think Id mind having the post side as much if the posts themselves were on their side of the boundary. I would make it more difficult for them to maintain it if they get more problems but technically I'd be gaining land. But as it is I'm losing land and getting the crummy side.

EcoMouse Thu 04-Feb-10 10:59:35

Even here fencing is discussed in terms of presumption and custom rather than law.

It's a useful site though. Clairey, you might find advice there?

ImSo, I dont know. I find it abhorrent that courtesy itself has to become subject to enforcement to retain it's existance. It goes against the whole intention!

<Makes note to instruct DC's on the pleasantaries of fencing>

whoopstheregoesmymerkin Thu 04-Feb-10 11:00:57

I always thought that if it was your fence you should benefit from the pretty side confused
Having said that our boundary fence needed replacing last year and it belongs to next door, in the interests of neighbourlyness we offered to pay half (it is a big ole expensive job)and our neighbour did the labour
<halo emoticon>

Morloth Thu 04-Feb-10 11:08:35

Fences have a pretty side? Does it matter?

Ivykaty44 Thu 04-Feb-10 11:09:36

fence posts are on my side of the garden - as it is not my fence. I have to lump it as that is the correct thing to do when putting the fence in.

I have one of these to hide the fence this

it grows to twenty foot really quickly and flowers twice a year - being evergreen it hide the fence all year around.

feed it and it will flower quicker

ImSoNotTelling Thu 04-Feb-10 11:31:38

The correct thing to do is to have the pretty side facing out if it is your fence. The person who owns the fence gets the ugly side.

ivykaty where do you get the idea that your way (the reverse) is the correct way, as it is the opposite to everything I have ever been told re, garden etiquette.

The site eco linked to earlier also states "When putting up a fence, custom dictates that the posts are entirely on your land and the face of the fence, points to your neighbours."

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