Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,049
Registered: ‎03-05-2011

Opinions please

[ Edited ]

In Florida most homes are fenced in as is mine.   The fence is 3 inches in from neighbors yard.   I am growing Jasmine on it and it climbed over and through the fence over the years.  I got a new neighbor and he took the pleasure of ripping it off his side.  My question is , does he have a right to do this?  It was not touchinh his property and I am upset because the fence is old and he ripped them off with such force , that the fence is coming apart.     Thanks in advance.


Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,735
Registered: ‎10-29-2016

The neighborly thing to do would have probably spoken to you first about it.  After all you planted it.  I think if it's a tree and it was overhanging on to their property, they would have the right to trim it.  Local coding would be involved also.  I know where I live you can't put up any fence or structure unless it's within a certain amount of distance from the next property.  Best thing to do is check local code laws.

Valued Contributor
Posts: 553
Registered: ‎08-31-2015

Contact the city on how to handle the situation. The fence needs repair now but the Jasmine should eventually grow back. 

Take pictures of both sides of the fence. You may need a letter sent to him with the property line info (possibly legal doc).

This may head off any further problems. He will think first before acting. 

Respected Contributor
Posts: 4,809
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Opinions please

[ Edited ]

I'm not clear if you and your neighbor share a community fence or he has his own fence three inches from yours. Either way, I think it might have been better if you could have clipped the back part which faces his yard.


I do know one thing about jasmine because one of my neighbors planted it years ago and it climbs and clings and spreads like wildfire.  We and other neighbors had to trim it back from our properties to keep  it from overtaking all of our plants, etc.

~The only difference between this place and the Titanic is that the Titanic had a band.~
Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,642
Registered: ‎06-24-2011

About 4 or 5 years ago, the previous resident of the house next door had climbing flowers that went up trellises she leaned against the brick fence that divides our properties, and flowers grew over our side of the wall. Those flowers brought numerous bees; our dog was stung; they were the "killer bees" and made a hive in our roof above the garage. I called an exterminator who came right out and got rid of them, but he told us to remain in the house for 3 days until he was sure they were all dead or gone. I missed those 3 days of work and couldn't sleep. I called the HOA and was told that, here, the neighbor was required to leave 3 feet from the brick fence. That neighbor broke the rules, intruded on our property, and didn't consider how that affected us.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 19,127
Registered: ‎10-25-2010

From what I understand, if the plants were 100% on your property, he legally can’t touch them.  If something ugly was placed on your fence and it faced his back yard, he has the right to enjoy his yard while not looking at the ugly something.  The ugly something could be a tarp or drop cloth or something that was unusual and not a standard item that would be on a fence.


i would remind the new neighbor that the fence and the plants are yours and 100% on your property and advise him that he should not touch them without your consent.  If you can find the stake defining the property line, I would expose it and show him where his property begins.


If he does this again, I would take him to small claims court and sue him  just to let him know that he is breaking the law.  You could also get your attorney to send him a letter advising him not to touch your fence or plants.


He doesn’t sound like a wonderful’re going to need some luck dealing with him in the future.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 70,504
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

If the fence and Jasmine were solely on your property, it seems the neighbor was out of line cutting it.  If you don't want to confront him, do you have an attorney who could write him a desist letter?  Maybe he thinks the fence is his.  That's not always clear when moving into a new house.

New Mexico☀️Land Of Enchantment
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,651
Registered: ‎03-28-2015

Before causing a rift with a new neighbor....I would talk to them as nicely as possible about it first.....

Honored Contributor
Posts: 31,217
Registered: ‎05-10-2010

Re: Opinions please

[ Edited ]

This is really a no brainer; of course he had every right to remove them since they were on his property.  I don't think he even gave it a thought, he didn't want that jasmine so he ripped it down but he didn't touch your fence.  I suppose he could have spoken to your about it but he's a new neighbor, he didn't give it that much thought.  He didn't touch your fence.  I think if the fence is rickety and eyesore, you might want to do something about that.  In the interest of being  a good neighbor.  

Respected Contributor
Posts: 4,790
Registered: ‎03-19-2010

Re: Opinions please

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I am sure each state is different but here in Alabama if a tree/flowers/shrubs grow over the property line, the other homeowner can cut/trim them.  I asked a neighbor for years to cut his trees that were WAY over our property lines and he would not.  After the tree tops continually scraping the tops of our cars, I hired someone to trim them to his property line.  He never said a word to us.