From the article: Landscaping Considerations When Buying a House
The more time you spend in your yard, the more you expose your life to your neighbors. While many of us seek a backyard oasis from our landscaping, a haven where we can commune with nature and experience a feeling of serenity, the reality is that bad neighbors can send serenity packing in a hurry! We hate to admit it, but the people who live around us have veto power over our backyard fun. Most all of us have a landscaping horror story to tell about bad neighbors. Maybe it's a mild annoyance you remember, such as a bad neighbor blowing leaves onto your side of the property line. Or perhaps it's something worse you recall: e.g., has a bad neighbor ever vandalized your fence, mailbox or plants? Share Your Stories
Surrounded by Bad Neighbors
- I have bad neighbors all around me. One neighbor constantly is putting Roundup on his yard to the point that his yard is now a toxic waste dump. We have what we believe is a drug dealing punk in the same court, but it hasn't been proven yet (but when you see cars coming at all times of the day and night you begin to wonder). They also have yappy dogs that are known to run loose and leave deposits on neighboring lawns. I have a neighbor on one side that isn't quite so bad as the toxic dump neighbor but she did put weed killer on her lawn without giving thought to plants that were on my side, and she killed half my favorite lilac. I don't use chemicals on my yard because I like the wildlife that roams (squirrels, rabbits and lots of birds). We've even had deer come running through. I can tell you the buck didn't stop here long. One neighbor decided that she didn't like all the vegetation around her house and pulled it all out. Now the yard just sits there looking barren and plain.
- —Guest ellen
13 Years of Harassment From Bad Neighbor
- The day I met my new neighbor he was standing in his front yard. I went up to the fence that divides our property and introduced myself. He looked at me like I was a huge bug or something, backed away from me and never spoke to me again. He has a corner lot and I am his only neighbor. He has complained about me so often I have lost track. He lies. He complains that I NEVER cut the grass, that I have a car rusting in my backyard. First off, there is no way to get a car in my backyard, plus I don't drive and have never owned a car. Today, after working on my yard for the last two days, edging the lawn, planting and trimming the hedge, I get a visit from City Hall. He has complained once again, I have garbage on my driveway, a bed, etc. What I had on my driveway was bundles of twigs ready for garbage pick up on Friday morning and some wood for a fence I'm building this coming Sunday. This man looks at me the same way he did since day one and never stops watching every move I make.
- —Guest Annette
Stupid, Bad Neighbours in Australia
- I'm only 15 and live in Australia, but my neighbours have recently become a pain. They play constant loud music and have started to dump dead palm leaves into our back yard claiming that "it fell by nature." Obviously I was upset that my mum has to deal with this kinda stuff, and today she just had enough and stormed over there, and since she is Chinese and doesn't understand English very well, I had to speak to the neighbours' mother -- who is a nice person but seriously needs to control her immature children. So I was speaking to her about it, but then all of a sudden her daughters come out and start swearing at me using the "it fell by nature" excuse again, and the younger one started calling my mum names and saying she's gonna punch her (and stuff all this trash talk), and then the oldest one, who looked like she hasn't had a shower in 2 years, starts saying she's going to get her "cousin," Sonny (who happens to be one of my friends) to bash me. These people are unbelievable.
- —Guest Alan
Bad Neighbor Story: Hockey Horror
- I live in a neighborhood where a hockey clique rules. This past year has been an experience that we will never forget. The teenage boys who live across the street thought that our driveway and backyard was their personal playground. We asked them not to use our driveway, and that in turn got my newly planted plants in my vegetable beds rocked. This later led to me being assaulted with a garden hose, which split open my ear, and collapsed a vein in my eye. I also was egged, had water balloons thrown at my roof, and FU written on my driveway. The family next to us let their dogs use our yard as their bathroom, while their children used our yard as their playground. We fenced, and the 3-year old from next door said she ought to slit our throats. My vegetable garden was poisoned with a 4-chemical mixture, and my new cedar fence was spray painted "4-sale". I am amazed at the number of people in the neighborhood who have caught these people doing things, but refuse to call the police.
- —Guest Joliet
Bad Neighbors Have No Landscaping
- We have a neighbor that has a terrible yard -- they hardly mow their grass and there isn't any landscaping at all in there yard. All of their weeds are now coming into our yard. In addition, when my brothers and sisters came home from school, they were having a neighborhood party in our backyard for their 2 year old. They said that they do not have any room to host a party like that in their yard because they have too much stuff. My sister told them to leave and then they called the police. We now have a no trespassing sign in our back yard. After speaking to an attorney, we were told that no one should be in your back yard if you are not home. It is called trespassing and that, if it continues, we will have to file additional documentation for the destruction of our property.
Dog Feces in My Front Yard
- I had a neighbor 3 houses up the street who led his big mutt out every morning at 6 am. This dog defecated at least 4-5 times a week in our front yard, and it always was a big load. So, I started to fill a 5 gal. bucket with it and one night went up to his front door dumping it all over. A note on the door said: This is all your dog's feces left in our front yard. Next time all this s**t will be dumped on your car! I see this guy now walking his dog with a scooper.
- —Guest Helmut
Bad Neighbors, Dogs: Other Side of Fence
- I have lived in my home for about 15 yrs. I have dogs -- Pekingese and Carins. My one neighbor is targeted by my dogs because with any little barking, he yells and screams. He yells obscenities, etc. I have tried to have conversations with him, informing him that the more he yells, the more they will bark. They do not target the other side of the fence with barking and the other neighbors have activity in their yard, as they have a daycare. Our lot is large: at least one acre. His behavior is unpredictable and erratic, he threatens me and the dogs. I have called the police at least 5 times, consulted with animal control etc. I am always told there is nothing they can do. Most recently, he kicked in a portion of the fence. The police told me he had a right to do whatever to his fence. I cannot believe this. I would like to put up a cement fence; does anyone have any opinions about this? I know this will be costly, but I want and need the privacy. At least a cement fence cannot be kicked in.
- —Guest Pyyper
For a New Neighbor TV-Show
- I'm an LA-based casting director doing preliminary research for a new TV pilot that aims to solve neighborly conflicts in a neighborly way. I'm hoping you could help me get in touch with anyone interested in this topic, so they can reach me directly. You can check out our website www.metalflowersmedia.com to review our casting credits and e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org if interested. Many thanks, Ivette
- —Guest LOOKING FOR STORIES
Story From the Other Side of the Fence
- I think a lot of "bad neighbor" stories here are actually FROM the "bad neighbors." What are you doing looking into other people's properties and complaining they are "junk piles." Or, worse, complaining about their dogs barking? Dogs bark. Get used to it. And what in the HELL are you doing looking into your neighbor's yard to find something to complain about? I think it is YOU that are actually the BAD "neighbor," as you are NO "neighbor" at all. You're just a whiner who hates animals, and a peeping tom at that.
- —Guest sugar
Confession of Unintentional Bad Neighbor
- I am one of those bad neighbors and realy wish I could fix things, just can't afford to. Bought a fixer upper some time ago then husband got sick. Economy bad for all and we ended up going bankrupt when he missed a lot of work and those bills kept coming. Now we both work and live week to week hoping we can pay those bills. No credit cards, just mortgage, utilities, gas. He has to commute and gas is a hundred a week. I work 6 days a week. House is in disrepair and I am sorry but really can't fix the deck that is falling down, can't paint or have the tree that is lying in the back yard taken away. I feel guilty that I have the worst house in a nice neighborhood but really can not change it. Mortgage is upside down. Paychecks sometimes very low as one is on commission. Sometimes think only way neighbors could improve their house value is to fix mine but I can't say that outloud and they probably don't want to insult by offering. Thats life and I am sorry.
- —Guest wish I could do more
Bad Neighbor Has No "Boundaries" Concept
- My neighbor likes to have parties. That's fine except for one thing, he seems to think that we should allow him to use our yard when he does. He never asks, he just helps himself. For some reason he thinks that his party is the most important event in the neighborhood and that everyone should get out of the way and not disturb him. If I try to set boundaries, he explodes. Now I know why he didn't want us to build a fence between the two yards. He wants to use our space!
- —Guest Looking for Respect
Violent, Bad Neighbor
- I had a tree cut down on a property line with this bad neighbor (my tree). I was done with tree climbers cutting limbs and lowering with block and tackle so as not to damage our houses. Three weeks prior to this, he had a new concrete driveway put in and he and his family had been driving their pick-up trucks on the very dry grass for several days during construction. Even though those tire tracks were his, he angrily blamed me and the tree company for putting those tire tracks in his yard. The fact is, the tree company never put one tire in his yard. Then he pointed to an imaginary spot and claimed a tractor had been in his yard to load the cut logs. I told him no, it was done from my driveway with a large truck and a giant set of tongs on a boom. I had ruined his yard, he angrily said, forgetting the tire tracks were his. Then he wanted to fight. He is an apparent alcoholic as he is a heavy drinker. After that, he has continued to threaten me. I put up a privacy fence, and purchased pepper spray and a legal pistol.
- —Guest Rev
Violent, Bad Neighbors, Atlanta, Pt. 3
- Furthermore, I take care of my disabled mother. She likes to feed the stray cats, which I hate to no end. Anyway, it (the thing next door) somehow killed a number of the cats. I suspected animal cruelty in poisoning, but none of the animal nonprofits nor the humane society found this of interest. I mean, why else would four cats (even if I am on its side on this one) die within the first week of the initial incident? I mean, I've accidentally (legit) run over one when backing out of the driveway (no idea why it didn't run when the motor started), but these just died. No marks, no nothing. Just dead. And, because they come to my mom for food, they died within the backyard. One just ended up missing (the 5th), but it was somewhat of a blessing to me. That is the only good thing it has done for me. I wish to whatever god may exist that he'd kill it and the family and the boyfriend. Oh, and the little girl threw a brick through my window. I paid for the replacement.
- —Guest Michael
Violent, Bad Neighbors, Atlanta, Part II
- Nothing came of the call to the police. The officer claimed that, because it didn't leave a mark, he couldn't arrest it. I was livid! Mind you, it had no less than 5 kids, and all were sitting there making rude comments while the officer was there. It tried to parent them, but if you're a sub-par parent from the get go, they won't listen later. After the threats of violence, the threat of death, the threat of male on male rape, my witness was deemed unusable because he is my brother. The fact that she slapped me and didn't leave a mark was the reason he wouldn't press charges for battery. I was advised that if I filed a charge at 160 Pryor Ave. (no idea what that is) that the case would eventually be dismissed because I'm related to the only witness on my side. Once the officer left, I proceeded to slash its tires, key its car, and super glue its locks. If the law won't help, I'll take it into my own hands. I just wish I could lock it -- and the countless kids in the home -- with superglue (continued).
- —Guest Michael
Violent, Bad Neighbors, Atlanta, Part I
- In the beginning, neighbor problems weren't too bad. Kids being loud, loud music on weekends, typical everyday complaints one just gets used to. Then it started with dumping trash in my yard. I saw the 'mother' (if you can call it that since the kids aren't being raised) throw beer cans in my yard. I threw one back, with her in my line of vision. She became irate. This led to a verbal war between ourselves and eventually her husband. She called the police, they settled everything. About 2 months ago we threw the same beer can between each other's yards for about a month after I discovered it on my property. Today, I was mowing the lawn and found more of her trash in my yard. I threw it over, she immediately came out and threw it back. This led to cursing on both ends. Eventually, while mowing the rest of the yard, the 'baby daddy' (her words) came out and harassed me. Its boyfriend (different guy) and the baby daddy threatened me. Words exchanged, she slapped me, I called the police (continued).
- —Guest Michael
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