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Boundary fence

  • 21-12-2021 6:02pm
    Registered Users Posts: 7,735 ✭✭✭ Pinch Flat

    Over the summer (around august) we had a neighbour appear on our door step out of the blue. She wanted to replace her garden fence - some of it borders us - and wanted our opinion on what she was proposing it's a powder coated metal fence. She handed us a brochure, with the fence circled that she was looking at. She showed up a few days later to see had we decided and was quite pushy.

    We rang the fence company she was proposing, thinking we'd go with this as our fence probably needs replacing- it's a wooden fence over 20 years old. We share a boundary with 4 or 5 neighbours. We reckoned this would cost us around €6-7k. This was too much for us, so we went back to the neighbour and explained the high cost and also that we'd prefer a more cost effective wooden fence.

    We got a quote from a wooden fence supplier - around €4k and we would have to remove the old fences - they'd then measure up and fit the new fence which is on a 12 week lead in - so no fence between us and the neighbours for this period of time. Still a lot of cash.

    Now in fairness, we never got back to the neighbour with this information but out of the blue she erected a new fence between her and another neighbour (the powder coated metal one) and used the remnants of this old wooden fence to build up a higher fence at our boundary with her - it's around 2.4m high, so in excess of the 2m permitted (checked the planning for the estate). She built this inside her own garden, so technically hasn't interfered with the boundary fence between her and us.

    We are really annoyed that she's just gone ahead and did what she did without further engagement with us. We'll also be advising her on the excess height - it's 2 feet over the surrounding fences. We're going to ask her to remove the fence at the back of our garden and will state within a reasonable period say 4 weeks. Alternatively, we will refer it to the council for enforcement. Thoughts?

    Post edited by Pinch Flat on


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,986 ✭✭✭ billyhead

    Personally I would be glad she erected a fence from her own expense. The higher the better. More privacy.

  • Registered Users Posts: 232 ✭✭ pale rider

    she put up a fence a little higher than you want at her expense as that is what they wanted.

    Do nothing, I’d be delighted.

    She might call back for a contribution but I doubt it given where she positioned it

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,735 ✭✭✭ Pinch Flat

    Thanks for the comments. The fence is a mish mash of the old fence so unsightly.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,290 ✭✭✭ endofrainbow

    I wouldn't be relying on the Council to take action. If they did investigate, it could take years to come to a resolution.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,735 ✭✭✭ Pinch Flat

    Not really. One of the planning conditions in our estate is that you can't build boundary walls to the front. Neighbours built a wall and received an enforcement notice from the council directing the wall be demolished. The neighbour in our case has breached the planning conditions (which state max 2.0m) so they have a clear route to enforcement.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,290 ✭✭✭ endofrainbow

    My own neighbours received a planning enforcement notice last February which gave 3 months to comply. 10 months later they've done nothing. So when I say it could years even with enforcement, it's up to the council to well, enforce.

  • Registered Users Posts: 9,773 ✭✭✭ Effects

    People can just not engage with enforcement, and it will drag on for years. It's often hard enough to get enforcement to do anything in the first place.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,735 ✭✭✭ Pinch Flat

    Well done you for working out so much about me from one post. We've lived in this estate since 2004 and not had a single issue with any neighbours. In fact, our neighbour adjoining the semi-d side of our house built an extension to at the rear of their property a few years back, which involved works to the party wall and shared roof structure. They consulted with us before hand and we marked out the footprint to assess the impact - we had concerns about light - and agreed to what they were proposing. We couldn't have been more accommodating and had no issue with their contractor using our property for access - they needed to erect scaffolding to finish a gable wall and we had a mini digger in our garden for a while. We mutually agreed to build a new blockwork wall between us, cost shared, no issues.

    In this case, the boundary was amended without consent and is done so in breach of planning regulations. Its also unsightly so we're looking directly at it and it takes from our garden. Perhaps you're cool with this, which is great - we all have differing levels of what's acceptable.

    Our neighbour advised that the fence she was planning was on a 12 week lead in and that the works would be carried out close to Christmas. Looking back at the text exchanges, whixh we instigated to keep a record, we provided her with the information on an alternative timber fence in addition to taking it on ourselves to seek quotes. You're right though on the alternative fence - we should have left the onus with her in seeking alternative quotations on a more cost effective fence and have her dealing with the logistical issue rather than us trying to help. Bear in mind also that we wanted to spend €0 on the fence, so looking for something cost effective. Looking at the timing of this and her ordering the new fence, she obviously decided to completely ignore our concerns and proceed anyway. Silence doesn't denote consent.

    Anyway, having read around the issue, It looks like there's legislation to deal with such issues.

    Also, CItizens information have also produced a useful guide

    This places the onus on the person carrying out the works to seek prior written consent

    "You should always seek the fully informed consent of your neighbour before commencing any works. If agreement can be reached, this could be written down so the terms of the consent and the works are clear to both you and your neighbour. You should not go outside of what is permitted by such consent." So this clearly wasn't followed.

    We'll contact her asking her to remove the unsightly structure at the rear of our property. If not will refer it to the council as unauthorised development and see where it goes. The guide above also sets out applying for a district court order, which we'd like to avoid, which I suspect are harder to ignore over a letter from the council.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 512 ✭✭✭ MakersMark