Border hedges responsibility

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    Border hedges responsibility

    Not sure whether this is the right forum for it so please let me know if there is any other appropriate forum for this kind of question.

    I am renting a semi-detached house from a private landlord. Our next door neighbour is replacing a fence on the border and we recently received an email from the letting agent saying they have asked to clear the garden so that they can replace the fence or otherwise they will do it and send us an invoice. We cleared everything we could from our side but there are some hedges on the border which might be overhanging on the other side but we don't have access to due to the fence. The letting agent says it is our responsibility to clear it but I am not sure how it can be our responsibility if the only way to do it is to go to their property and do it from there? Our landlord has been very unhelpful in anything we have discussed with him so far so I think it might escalate. We don't want to get into any arguments with the neighbour or the landlord but is it really our responsibility?

    #2
    Are the hedges on your side or the neighbours side? Also if you have a word with the neighbour and tell him to get the people who are doing the fences to remove it, they most likely will, I doubt you have responsibility to start to remove hedges because a neighbour wants to put up a fence.

    Comment


      #3
      And in any case a hedge owner (if you are that) has no responsibility to remove branches straddling the boundary.

      Unless your tenancy agreement says something very specific I'd be inclined to file this and the invoice in the "to think about in 2023" pile.

      Comment


        #4
        I would ask the letting agent why they think you have to do anything at all for the neighbour?

        It's not an obligation on a neighbour, it might be helpful, but whether you decide to be helpful or not is up to you.

        The neighbour can cut down any of your hedges that are overhanging their property (and have to offer to return the resulting mess) without involving you.
        When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
        Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

        Comment


          #5
          Thank you for the responses which validates my point of view. The hedges are on my side but right against the fence. I don't know the history but the fence must have been put up just before we moved in as the hedges are quite old and mature and it is not possible even to view the fence from my side which again means they didn't remove the hedges from the border properly before installing the fence as they both can't exist together in the long run.

          The initial discussions about this happened a few months ago and after I told them about my view, they went quite. But today they were doing the fence replacement and I received an email from the agents again about it saying the same thing so I was just confused whether I was wrong on that. I have replied to them clarifying the responsibility but I suspect they will come back arguing about it as the landlord/agents have been very rude about every single thing for the last few months.

          Comment


            #6
            The neighbours can cut the hedge to their borderline.

            I suspect that the issue is that they want to put the fence along the actual border (which is reasonable if they are responsible for that border).
            Because then they have to put parts of it in or on the landlord's border.

            None of this is anything to do with you (unless you decline to let the neighbour or their workmen onto what is right now your property).
            Nor can the agent insist on you doing work or do it and charge you for it.
            When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
            Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

            Comment


              #7
              This is really between the neighbour and the owner. As jpk suggests, unless you have a very unusually onerous garden maintenance clause in your contract, you have no liability to do anything here as far as I can see.

              Comment


                #8
                I agree with others, i do not see how this is your responsibility, when you viewed the property it had a hedge, you signed the AST..... it had a hedge, i assume you were happy with said hedge and understood you may need to give it a trim or two every now and again. That is where your responsibility begins and ends, it is not for you to don the hard hat and work overalls and spend a day cutting and digging (or whatever) to allow the neighbor to remove the thing, that is down to the LL, I would like to see them try and get payment out of me for something i had not agreed too and did not want.

                Comment


                  #9
                  The neighbour / and or contractor will be trespassing if they step on to your property ........ as a tenant its nothing to do with you but best keep the LA and LL in the loop

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Thanks, I have informed the letting agents that we trimmed the hedges and branches recently from our side so it is up to the neighbours to do whatever they want to do on their side and to ask the landlord if they want to remove anything as it is not our responsibility. I am surprised they had the audacity to report this as the same neighbour recently did a loft conversion on their house and because they have extended right to the boundary of our property, they had to put the scaffolding on our driveway for almost 4 months. Even today the people replacing the fence used our driveway to get to the fence and left a real mess behind with mud everywhere.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by effell01 View Post
                      the same neighbour recently did a loft conversion on their house and because they have extended right to the boundary of our property, they had to put the scaffolding on our driveway for almost 4 months. Even today the people replacing the fence used our driveway to get to the fence and left a real mess behind with mud everywhere.
                      I know of a past neighbour of mine who would not allow his neighbours work men to set foot on his property for an extension they were doing on a semi detached house...... you can image how hard that was !!!! They hated each other

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