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Neighbour complaining about our garden lights

357 replies

Slave2love · 25/11/2019 11:09

Very petty and silly subject I know but here goes.
We have a small hedge on the edge of our front lawn to separate our garden from the neighbour's driveway. (Only recently planted, very small at this stage) further in on our lawn we have put a few small solar lights. Next doors drive is only just wide enough to squeeze 2 cars side by side and there is very little room to open doors etc. Until we put the hedge and lights in they were opening their car door fully over our garden in order to get out (also stepping on our land at times). Now I appreciate that we have made it awkward for them to open the doors fully now but surely they are not entitled to use our garden in order to get out of their car? They are new to the street but we knew of them previously and children are actually in the same class at school. Neighbour has asked this morning if we can move the solar lights. All has been pleasant with them up until now despite them being quite selfish neighbours. I could understand if the lights were on the boundary line but they are much further in. I feel it is them who have created the problem by parking 2 cars on a drive only really suitable for one. AIBU to not want to move the lights?

OP posts:
Bluntness100 · 25/11/2019 12:39

Does it really impact you if you move them? It feels like you're starting a silly petty war with your neighbours if it doesn't.

YouDancin · 25/11/2019 12:43

Their decking being too high might be in violation of planning laws. It is worth checking.

Kazzyhoward · 25/11/2019 12:43

Good God. If there's no other issues, just move the sodding lights. Is it really so important to ruin good neighbourly relations? If some of the answers on here are typical, it's no wonder so many people have long standing run-ins and disputes with neighbours etc. Have we all lost the ability to have a bit of give & take? If you don't move them or do what some clowns suggest build a wall, you're just asking for trouble - I'm sure they'll find ways to make your life difficult - tit for tat. You have to live with these people until one of you moves. Don't sweat the small stuff.

JacquesHammer · 25/11/2019 12:43

I guess I just feel annoyed that we are being asked to change something when it's all because the drive isnt properly wide enough in the first place

It’s such a small thing though! I kind of get the impression that if you stand your ground, they will likely be awkward anyway. Is it worth the stress when you can just move a couple of lights!

ambereeree · 25/11/2019 12:43

Don't move them. Remind her to be careful when opening car doors. Fertilize the fence with manure.

NorthernSpirit · 25/11/2019 12:44

Your garden looks lovely. I wouldn’t charge it to accommodate them.

MeTheCoolOne · 25/11/2019 12:45

I think I just feel annoyed because they have done numerous selfish things since moving in and weve never made a fuss

That explains things then. Sounds like you are being petty then 😂 but it’s more understandable. How does them stepping onto your land bother you? Do they do any actual damage or is it just the thought of them doing it?
If you don’t move the lights then you will come across to them as unreasonable, are you ok with falling out with them? Even though you are morally in the right I generally think it’s best to stay on good terms with your neighbours.

SirVixofVixHall · 25/11/2019 12:45

Looking at that, and hearing how they are as neighbours I would absolutely put up a fence or wall. I would also not allow access to your alleyway. They are rude and walking all over you. Also as those plants grow the ones in the way of the car door may well get so battered that they die and leave an ugly gap. They will also no doubt brutally “trim” your hedge themselves. A wall or fence is the only way.

Laughterisbest · 25/11/2019 12:45

If that's their drive with the grey edging right beside your hedge won't you have to go onto their drive to cut your hedge when it gets bigger? And remember, hedges get thicker, not just taller.
They sound very inconsiderate neighbours, and you have every right to protect your property, but the hedge will be a problem in the future.

You'd be better with a wall.

SassenachWitch · 25/11/2019 12:45

You have my sympathy. This is the side of our front garden, as my neighbour is incapable of avoiding my grass. It looks like this and worse every winter.

They also step out of their cars, onto our garden.

Neighbour complaining about our garden lights
scrumptiousbears · 25/11/2019 12:45

My neighbour had this from another neighbours drive. The problem isn't the door it's the feet trampling on the grass and making it a mud fest in the wet and in hot weather the grass dies.

That fact is it's OP garden and not something of conscience for neighbour. Plus any treading on the now tiny bush will cause damage and they clearly do not care.

OP I'd say the garden is staying as it is. It's yours and not an extension of their drive. If you did have a wall there (which I have) then tough 🤷🏼‍♀️.

MoveOnTheCards · 25/11/2019 12:45

If she needs to open her car door that wide can she actually get out without stepping on your grass/where the hedge has been planted?

Tbh I’d just ignore or look puzzled and point out the hedge will soon be growing if she asked me again.

Kazzyhoward · 25/11/2019 12:46

I know I'm probably being petty

Yes, you probably are. I couldn't get worked up about any of that. I've been through hell with truly bad neighbours and know that it just escalates without a bit of give and take on both sides. Save your energies for things that really matter.

SoxiFodoujUmed · 25/11/2019 12:46

A hedge is an absolute maintenance nightmare. Obviously much cheaper than a sturdy wall but a wall is so much better. Good fences make good neighbours.

If the hedge is still quite new you can move the plants to some large pots which will keep them from growing too big, so you can still enjoy them. Replace them with a good fence or wall, with some wall-mounted solar lights that point all the light downwards at the ground so as not to be a source of light pollution through their windows.

They are cheeky fuckers wanting to use your land to increase the capacity of their driveway. It is not on.

Soontobe60 · 25/11/2019 12:47

OP, if you did put up a fence would that mean they wouldn’t be able to park both cars on the drive? Is parking on the road a problem in your street? Where do you park?

BrokenWing · 25/11/2019 12:47

We have a similar thing with our neighbours. They have laid mono block strips over their grass so they can park their 4 cars and a van (5 vehicles for 2 adults!), and they have placed one of the strips right up to our boundary.

I park my car to the very left of our drive up to our boundary (as no passengers usually get in my car and if they do I can reverse out), and it leaves a path to our front door clear, but it means they can't open their drivers door on the 4th car.

They have mentioned it once and I said, yes pity the drive isn't wide enough for so many cars, you could try reversing in so you can open your drivers door on your side? They still don't reverse, so if they park while I am out and exit their car via my drive I make sure I park right up to theirs so they have to get into the drivers seat via the passenger door 😂

Neighbour complaining about our garden lights
DontDribbleOnTheCarpet · 25/11/2019 12:48

What kind of hedging did you plant? I would leave the lights where they are, but move the plants over to your side a little. This is because it looks like you will struggle to keep the plants away from their boundary otherwise and may end up having to hack of more of the plants than is healthy for them.

fuzzyduck1 · 25/11/2019 12:49

So you put up a hedge so they didn’t open their car door over your garden. Well that was very neighbourly. Was it really causing you harm them occasionally stepping on your land?
Sounds like your the one who’s created the bad feeling between you. Now your trying to blame it on them for asking you to move some lights.
How do you intend to manage the side of the hedge that borders their garden? How can you do that without going on there land? Or are you expecting them to keep it trimmed?

Honeybee85 · 25/11/2019 12:49

Don’t move the lights.
How cheeky of her to expect you to reorganize your garden for the sole purpose of her being able to open her car! And agree with PP, she will damage your hedge, put up a fence instead.

Our neighbors came to the house a while ago, very anxious apologizing because they had accidentally hit one of the plants in our front garden when they drove out of the parking space in front of their house. We couldn’t even see the damage so we told him hem to stop worrying about it. If they behaved like yours, the only thing I would have done is pulled this face Hmm at them and said nothing. Utterly ridiculous entitled behavior.

bluebeck · 25/11/2019 12:52

Big Fence!

BendyLikeBeckham · 25/11/2019 13:01

Your hedge is planted too close to the border. When it grows, you will have to clip it so short (I.e. right back to the main stem/trunk) on the neighbours' side that it will probably just die. You need a good foot at least of clearance, preferably more, for it to grow outwards. My advice is put up a small fence at the border and move the hedge inwards. Otherwise you've wasted your money.

Disfordarkchocolate · 25/11/2019 13:02

Honestly, i would have put a fence up because those plants are never going to grow tall enough as their car doors will bash them too much. There is nothing neighbourly about allowing a someone to walk over your garden because they are lazy, that is being taken advantage of.

SoupDragon · 25/11/2019 13:04

Well that was very neighbourly. Was it really causing you harm them occasionally stepping on your land?
Sounds like your the one who’s created the bad feeling between you

Did you read the OP's latest post detailing what the neighbours do?

JKScot4 · 25/11/2019 13:07

In light of the photo, I’m mystified why pp would still suggest moving the lights!!
Absolutely not, it’s your garden to do with as you wish, personally I’d put up a 3/4ft wall.

WhatchaMaCalllit · 25/11/2019 13:07

@fuzzyduck1 - "So you put up a hedge so they didn’t open their car door over your garden. Well that was very neighbourly"....
So many issues arise between neighbours discussing what is and is not their land, how they have accessed their driveways for donkeys years by doing X but as soon as new neighbours arrive on the scene, they put a stop to X (which is completely understandable, especially if X was trespassing on their land) for example.

I would imagine that @Slave2love put up the hedge to mark out what is and is not her property. When the hedge is established, the neighbours will be unable to open their car doors over your land anyway. At the moment, the only thing stopping the neighbours opening their car doors over the OP's land is the solar lights. I'd leave the lights (or perhaps remove the lights and put up a low fence to protect the bushes as they are growing). The neighbours need to park better.
@Slave2love - you will probably have to put something up to protect the bushes grow or else they may grow at different rates due to the neighbours bashing their car doors into the young plants, stopping them from growing.

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