Who is reponsible for the cost of a fence?

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Who is reponsible for the cost of a fence?

I just built a home in a newer neighborhood. The lots on either side were already established for a couple of years. 1 of my neighbors had established a fence around his yard, while the other had not. I spoke with the neighbor who had the existing fence, and he told me to attach my new fence to his existing fence. After completing my new fence he came over with a bill, asking me to pay for 1/2 of his more then 2 year old existing fence. After telling him that this did not seem reasonable, he told me that the fence is on his property, and that I would have to now move my fence.

Asked on July 15, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Colorado

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

An agreement to allow you to attach your fence to a neighbor's fence is enforceable; if there was such an agreement, then the neighbor could not claim that your fence is on his property, since he invited or allowed it to be. However, if you do not have a written agreement, then if your neighbor now disputes what was said, it may be very difficult, and potentially expensive (if it goes to litigation) to establish the terms of the agreement. On the face it, a neighbor can ask someone to move a fence which was placed on the neighbor's property; the onus would be on you to show that you had his permission. If you do not feel you have good evidence to do that or do not want would could be a draining "fight" with a neighbor, you should probably try to work something mutually acceptable.


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