Wednesday, June 24

Neighbours and Fences

Fences and trees are two of the issues that upset neighbours.  Frequently on the news there are stories about neighbourhood spats because someone has built a fence that the neighbours don't like and often are required to help finance, or trees that overhang a neighbours property - and that the neighbours end up in a fight over the issue, often ending up in court.

My issue with fences is different.  The developers of the estate where I live have a caveat on the properties that home owners must not erect fences in the front of their properties.  Two owners have done so - which is not bad out of 40 properties I guess - and I don't know if there have been any complaints about it.

What I find amusing is that the developers reasoned that with no front fences, the neighbours would not have a "barrier" between them and that they could form friendships easier.  Does it happen?  No.  Quite the contrary.    There appears to be no interaction between neighbours here.  Why, you might ask.

I think it is because all the living areas are at the back of the house.  The only windows that overlook the front of the house are bedrooms, and these rooms are seldom visited during the day.  We don't see our neighbours come and go.  We are "isolated" to some degree in the rear of our houses.

I can walk up and down the street almost all day (though I don't) and you never see a neighbour.  If you see them, they are generally in their car going somewhere or coming home.

Would the front of the house be used more if there was a front fence?  Maybe, maybe not.  Few of the neighbours are gardeners and the properties nearly all are 2 metres higher than the road (above flood level), so the front yards are not a gardeners paradise at all.  We mow, and that is about all.

I'd like to tell the Developers that they concept failed miserably.

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