Fence ownership

Re: Fence ownership

Postby MacadamB53 » Thu Mar 31, 2016 8:31 am

Hi NickyBlake,

a 3' slides-up-and-down panel providing structural support for a building?!? I won't go there :)

if the neighbours moved out and your bezzie mates moved in how would you respond if they wanted a 6' fence? (something to think about...)

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby NickyBlake » Thu Mar 31, 2016 9:49 am

Its attached to the 6ft panels, lasted 12 years so far :wink: Its only a lean to, an outdoor space for our house cats.

we still wouldnt want a higher fence regardless who asked, however we would have a conversation about it and i very much doubt they would try and force us into allowing them to have it.


Look at it this way, if there was already a 6ft fence in place that was theirs and we messaged them saying its blocking light etc we want lower, do you think they would agree ? Or just sign over ownership because we asked ?

It may sound petty to most, and im sure everyone would like someone to pay for fencing for them, however knowing her it will soon be used as another topic to complain about - our dog damaged it, our kids pushed it, we looked at it and forced it to fall over :roll:

Im also kinda surprised that even though ALL the evidence points to it being ours we're still being advised to let them have it, we have a plan with t markers referenced in the title deeds, homesellers info, previous owner of their property verbally agreed it was ours, bad side to us, maintenance for years, follows pattern with other houses in road and I've even spoken to the son of the previous owners of our property who recalls his dad having someone put it in. Short of having a time machine back to when it was put in I cant produce anything further! They have an innaccurate plan and deeds that dont clarify anything because the plan or t markers arent referenced. Its purely for privacy reasons yet they could easily provide that for themselves without changing the fence, between some 6ft+ high bushes (put in by us to give some screening), our shed and the taller panels there is actually only small parts where you can see over.


Thank you for your input, its good to have opposing views ! Trying very hard to be reasonable whilst standing up for ourselves :?
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby arborlad » Thu Mar 31, 2016 10:43 am

NickyBlake wrote: bad side to us,




Had this been an original featheredge fence, it would have much greater significance, on a panel fence :cry:

Does the fence line up with anything of known ownership?
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby NickyBlake » Thu Mar 31, 2016 12:35 pm

I've included it as it is a clue to ownership, not basing my whole argument on it!


There is an old washing line support next to the fence on our side, they have a matching one far side of their garden and so do we, other than that nothing to clearly show it. If the fence was placed our side of that support the fence line would be very clearly over too far our side meaning the fence would be placed well into our building.

I presume old council fencing would have been wires run between supports ?
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby arborlad » Thu Mar 31, 2016 1:03 pm

NickyBlake wrote:Its concrete posts with a slot in fence panel, there are 2 & half 6ft panels from the house then dropping down to 3ft panels further into the garden.



I think these are terraced properties, does the fence line up with an internal party wall?
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby NickyBlake » Thu Mar 31, 2016 1:26 pm

They are semi detached, there is an air brick near the divide, i could measure that to see if its position gives any clue, any idea what im adding on for the party wall size ?

From the outside i can see if the fence moved over as per her calculations the fence would also butt up against my sink waste pipe
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby MacadamB53 » Thu Mar 31, 2016 2:47 pm

Hi NickyBlake,

go inside and take a measurement on the internal face of the rear wall, measuring from the dividing wall to the window frame.
next, go outside and mark this measurement out on the external face of the rear wall, measuring from the window frame towards the dividing wall.
this marks the point where the dividing wall and rear wall cross on your side.
if the dividing wall is a cavity wall, adding 125mm (or 5") will give you a very good indication of where the boundary line begins.
if the dividing wall is single brick, add 50mm (or 2") to get the same.

if the run of the fence begins wholly on your side of this it is reasonable to assume it's your fence.

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby arborlad » Thu Mar 31, 2016 3:18 pm

NickyBlake wrote:They are semi detached, there is an air brick near the divide, i could measure that to see if its position gives any clue, any idea what im adding on for the party wall size ?

From the outside i can see if the fence moved over as per her calculations the fence would also butt up against my sink waste pipe




It would depend on whether it was solid or cavity, solid - 9", it won't be a half brick 4 1/2", if cavity, 2X 41/2" + 4" for the cavity = circa13".

You can sometimes tell by the brickwork itself, where you have an alternate vertical row of headers (the short end of the brick) this is a good indication on the outside of what's happening inside.
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby NickyBlake » Thu Mar 31, 2016 5:10 pm

A quick measure puts the fence right on the middle line. There's some bits that get in the way so not perfect.
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby MacadamB53 » Thu Mar 31, 2016 8:08 pm

Hi NickyBlake,

no point in doing anything other than an accurate and careful measure...

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby NickyBlake » Thu Mar 31, 2016 8:37 pm

Okay so before I do, what would be the implications ?

Does that prove 50/50 because it straddles the boundary ? If it's an inch more to their side or ours does that prove who gets to use the fence from now on ?
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby arborlad » Fri Apr 01, 2016 11:01 am

NickyBlake wrote: I presume old council fencing would have been wires run between supports ?



Without seeing the property it's difficult to be certain, the usual would be one (9') bay of 6'-6'6" featheredge as a privacy screen next to the house then a lower fence continuing on from that. That lower fence could've been picket, chain link, split chestnut, all would be fairly normal for that era. Where the fence is fixed to the house, there should be witness marks of previous fixings or painting.
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby Collaborate » Fri Apr 01, 2016 11:16 am

I've just reread the whole thread, and it seems to me that the solution may be quite simple.

These are, I presume, ex-council properties. The LA will have had a standard transfer deed that meant they were no longer responsible for any of the boundaries, so they were always included in the sale.

This will have applied whether or not the boundaries had been previously sold off.

On the basis that the council cannot sell something it no longer owns, you must look at the dates of the 2 original transfers out of council ownership. Whichever comes first in time will own the boundary. Whichever comes second, won't.

That will also apply to your other boundaries.
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby NickyBlake » Fri Apr 01, 2016 3:59 pm

The more info i get the more confused I am over it all !

If the council retained the property next door to the one they were selling, would they still sell that middle boundary ?

If the previous owners of my property have "stolen" a boundary, paid to maintain it with or without the consent of the previous owners of next door and then transferred it to us, is there not a time limit for which that would become "ours" ? Nothing was flagged up when we purchased nor when next door purchased. The purchases from the council to private happened 40 years ago, both tennants lived here long before that too.

I've had a good look at the physical boundary and its clear why its positioned where it is, there's no other indication another boundary was ever in situ and I believe there used to be hedging between the houses judging by earlier aerial photos.

i appreciate the advice, the ball is in the neighbours court so for now I'm going to let this lie, we have enough to be focused on
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Re: Fence ownership

Postby Collaborate » Fri Apr 01, 2016 4:24 pm

An owner can only lawfully sell a thing once. After that it's not theirs to sell.

If all their standard transfer deed imposed an obligation on the transferee to maintain all boundaries then, naturally, when the council sells the property next door they have one less boundary to sell. However they never amend their transfer deeds to reflect that.

They would always prefer to impose the boundary obligation on the buyer rather than retain it themselves.

Beyond that, you're in danger of over-thinking things. Just get the dates of the original transfers from the council for each property. Paying to replace a fence belonging to another doesn't necessarily make you the owner.
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