Author Topic: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?  (Read 36985 times)

ReadySetMillionaire

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1174
  • Location: The Buckeye State
How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« on: May 04, 2016, 02:44:47 PM »
My fiance and I just moved into our first house last November. We love everything about it (location, school district, etc.), except for our neighbor.

My mom says it's like I'm living in a sitcom where writers are trying to make the worst neighbor imaginable just for everyone else's comic enjoyment. While sometimes it is actually funny, it's becoming incredibly annoying. His presence is oppressive and I need to do *something* about it to keep my sanity.

Let's list some things this guy does on a regular basis:

(1) Rakes snow from his lawn into the street, and then hoses down the snow in the street;

(2) Washes mailbox with a bucket and rag right at dusk, and pretty much peers into other houses for 10 minutes while he pretends to wash this mailbox;

(3) Mows his lawn, then blows it with a leafblower, then weedwacks it (the entire yard, not just the edges);

(4) Mows and fertilizes up to my driveway (a good 10 feet onto my property)...I asked him to stop and he said "I've been doing this since 1978;"

(5) Any time I go outside he comes and talks to me about how much he hates the other neighbors, how things used to be different, etc. All of these conversations do not end unless/until my fiance comes and asks me for help (he talks 95% of the time);

(6) Edges/trims my mailbox;

(7) Puts dirt and the debris from the curb and sweeps it into my yard.


Honestly I could go on forever. Like I said earlier, my fiance and I feel like we need to do something about it. Talking to him and telling him to stop over and over has been fruitless, so I need to do something physically.

The problem with that, though, is that it costs a decent amount of money. Which brings me to MMM.

Option 1--Fence Entire Side of Yard: I could build a fence all the way down his property line. With current zoning laws, I can have a 6' fence all the way to the frontage of my house, then I would need a variance to have a more than 3' fence in the front. I called zoning and they said applying for a variance would be $150 and they obviously can't guarantee this would be granted. My estimated cost for this would be $1,300.

Option 2--Fence Back Yard and Natural Fence Front: Given the above described zoning law, I could just do a "natural fence" in the front yard and have the fence go through the back yard. This would be a little cheaper at $1,100 (the trees I would get are on sale for $20/each this weekend) and I think would actually look a lot better.

But here's the issue: the neighbors behind my evil neighbor put up big pine trees that are about 20 feet off of his property. Evil neighbor went and cut all the branches from about six feet down (to the point I could completely walk under the tree), thus making this natural privacy fence worthless.

Option 3: You tell me. I might not be considering something here. Maybe I can build a wall and make him pay for it?

What would you do?



Johnez

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1088
  • Location: Southern California
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2016, 02:57:36 PM »
A lot of these things don't actually seem like "problems" that really hurt you.  Who cares if he "washes" snow with a hose?  Or washes his mailbox.  I honestly consider the entire list pretty harmless "annoying neighbor" problems that don't actually cause any damage.  I would say give it time, and like many other minor problems it'll just fade into the background as you have more pressing things to worry about.  The neighbor is high up on your list because you just moved in, wait till your work, school, kids, maintenance, etc. take over your thoughts and if the guy is being a douche-then do something about it. 

Chrissy

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 971
  • Age: 42
  • Location: Chicago
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #2 on: May 04, 2016, 03:00:15 PM »
Option 1. 

VaCPA

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 220
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2016, 03:02:47 PM »
So he's an obsessive landscaper. The guy probably is lonely and bored as hell. I know I'm not in your shoes but honestly I don't think much of that stuff would irritate me too much. The fact that he confides in you about how much he dislikes everyone else maybe means he likes you?

v8rx7guy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1413
  • Location: Bellingham, WA
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2016, 03:06:52 PM »
I wouldn't waste my time being annoyed by those kind of things either.  He's probably got a bad case of OCD or some slight mental issues.

Mr. Green

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1986
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Wilmington, NC
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2016, 03:07:09 PM »
You're really considering spending over $1,000 just to keep the guy from mowing 10 feet of your property? Yikes! Why are you annoyed by how the guy mows his own yard? That seems bizarre. Is he just outside all the time? Does he wash his mailbox all the time? What neighborhood doesn't have a nosy neighbor. If he's lived there since '78 then I assume he's and old man. Maybe he's just trying to get to know his neighbors and his social skills aren't that great. If you were more open to engaging him in conversation and trying to be a friendly neighbor maybe he would be open to not doing something anymore. I don't know if you've tried that.

I don't think I could bring myself to spend four figures just to keep my neighbor from mowing a bit of my yard.

BarkyardBQ

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 667
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2016, 03:14:29 PM »
You're better off trying to understand him and creating a friend vs alienating a neighbor and creating an enemy. He sounds old and lonely and you seem seriously bent on taking it personally. Have you actually had a real conversation with him or are you just starting a war over a classic lack of communication?

But here's the issue: the neighbors behind my evil neighbor put up big pine trees that are about 20 feet off of his property. Evil neighbor went and cut all the branches from about six feet down (to the point I could completely walk under the tree), thus making this natural privacy fence worthless.

Seriously, back to how old is this guy and have any of the neighbors talked to him? If he mows his lawn religiously, and can't bend over, how is he supposed to get a lawn mower under 4ft branches? Did anyone offer to mow the lawn for him?
« Last Edit: May 04, 2016, 03:19:03 PM by BackyarBQ »

SKL-HOU

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 556
  • Location: Houston, TX
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2016, 03:18:41 PM »
1 thru 4: not significant issues.
5: Just turn around and leave
6: what is the big deal?
7: this is the only one that is even an issue I think but even that doesn't make this guy a neighbor from hell.

I think maybe you got annoyed once and now anything he does annoys you. And it sounds like other neighbors told you stories so you are already biased. If this is the extend of the thing he does, then just relax.

slugline

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1172
  • Location: Houston, TX USA
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2016, 03:23:14 PM »
Honestly, I clicked in expecting to read about someone more threatening than this. You don't have to become best friends, but there's nothing here that would stop me from being polite and friendly when outside. Is there more you've left out? Because your description makes him sound more "eccentric" than "crazy."

hops

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 297
  • Location: United States
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2016, 03:31:11 PM »
I have a few elderly neighbors, some lonely and obsessive, others descending into senility, who do things like that. One is now too frail to spend every waking moment landscaping and trapping passersby in conversation. Every time I see him, slumped and speechless in the wheelchair his caregiver sometimes parks in front of his glass door, I feel like a gargantuan asshole for all the occasions I wished he'd go inside.

Fred2004

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 76
  • Age: 38
  • Location: FL
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2016, 03:33:42 PM »
option 3 made me laugh...wait to see how The Donald handles that before pursuing this option!

Plant some trees and see what he does to them...$20 a pop sounds like a cheap experiment!

Frankies Girl

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3036
  • Age: 82
  • Location: The laboratory
  • Typical Ghoul Next Door
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2016, 03:35:03 PM »
(1) Rakes snow from his lawn into the street, and then hoses down the snow in the street;

(2) Washes mailbox with a bucket and rag right at dusk, and pretty much peers into other houses for 10 minutes while he pretends to wash this mailbox;

(3) Mows his lawn, then blows it with a leafblower, then weedwacks it (the entire yard, not just the edges);

1-3 are silly stuff that lots of neighbors do and are harmless to you. Forget about this stuff. But do close your blinds if you can see in at dusk. ;)



(4) Mows and fertilizes up to my driveway (a good 10 feet onto my property)...I asked him to stop and he said "I've been doing this since 1978;"
Tell him to stop if this activity is doing any damage to your property. Tell him "You do not own this part from this point over, so you need to stop doing any further lawn work in the future. I don't care if you've been doing it since 1878, I am telling you again to stop mowing/treating my yard because I do not like it and it is damaging my property."

(5) Any time I go outside he comes and talks to me about how much he hates the other neighbors, how things used to be different, etc. All of these conversations do not end unless/until my fiance comes and asks me for help (he talks 95% of the time);
Wear earbuds even if you're not listening to music so you can point to them and just wave and walk on by. Or take your phone out with you with a bluetooth headset and point to it and say "un huh" into it a few times so all you have to do is smile and nod as you walk through. Then go about your business. Or simply say "so sorry, don't have time to talk right now" and move away from them even if that means he's talking as you leave.

(6) Edges/trims my mailbox;
Same as #4.

(7) Puts dirt and the debris from the curb and sweeps it into my yard.
Same as #4.


What do your neighbors do about him? Might want to ask them how they handled him? He sounds like he may be an old guy that hasn't many friends and is obsessed with yard work and is doing stuff on your yard because it's not up to his standards and he likes his area to look just so. I'd go talk to the people that live on the other side of him just for giggles to see how they've handled his overactive lawn grooming.

But mostly, I'd just ignore him. If he wants to go crazy trimming and edging his yard and into yours, then again, as long as he hasn't done any damage I'd just try to let the annoyance part go. The only way I'd confront the guy is if 1) he damages anything; or 2) he tries to plant or build anything that is not mutually agreed on, because in many states, land usage can be construed as ceding over that portion of the property (my mom had that happen in her favor with a very old house and a common drive, and my dad's house lost about 2 foot of property along one edge because he didn't protest a neighbor having a driveway laid over the property line).

I had neighbors with small kids that for some reason set up their slip and slide in the space between our houses and set their garbage cans out on my side of the yard which is very obviously mine - instead of in their back yard. They have a yard service that mows the side yard like it is an even 50/50 split, but it's more like 20% is theirs and 80% is mine (fence/property lines are obvious), so that means every 10 days our side yard gets a partial cut and edge. Annoyed the ever-loving crap out of me for the first year.

But you know what? I don't give a rat's ass now. Obviously after 13 years here, the kids are grown up and are no longer using the slip and slide, and nothing they're doing is damaging my usage and/or enjoyment of my own property.

Getting pissy with the neighbors over something that is at most annoying is just a recipe for having a very uncomfortable time for the rest of the time you are neighbors. Let it go unless he's really causing damage or hardship. Honestly, you're still a bright and shiny new homeowner so I think you're letting this guy get under your skin way too much. Chill and realize that you will always have the probability of having a kook or crazy person in your neighborhood and as far as kooks go, yours is pretty lightweight.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2016, 03:38:06 PM by Frankies Girl »

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3057
  • Location: Emmaus, PA
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2016, 03:47:27 PM »
Chill out. None of that is a big deal at all.

Fireball

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 235
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #13 on: May 04, 2016, 03:47:53 PM »
(7) Puts dirt and the debris from the curb and sweeps it into my yard.

I had a 63yr old neighbor across the street that blew his leaves & grass clippings in my yard for 5-6 years. I finally confronted him about it, to which he denied the grass clippings and said that every leaf in the neighborhood was from my two trees. He was just giving them back. Keep in mind there were literally hundreds of trees in our neighborhood. The story ends with me telling this 63 yr old that he won't be able to do either soon because I'm going to shove his leaf blower up his &$%.  Not my proudest moment. Don't be the guy who threatens bodily harm to a senior citizen.

marty998

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6535
  • Location: Sydney, Oz
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2016, 03:58:42 PM »
Meh, I don't think you have it bad at all.... you could have neighbours who*:

1) Are up all night screaming at each other in domestic disputes
2) Are up all night screaming and moaning in a fit of passion so you can't sleep
3) Park on your part of the curb, or leave their boat/trailer in front of your house
4) Build a garden trellis structure and cover it in toxic plants like Jasmine which kills of all the natives in your garden
5) Ignore you when you say hi and try and make friendly conversation

* All of these have happened to me or family at some point

Then there are the real nasty ones who are

- cooking meth
- keeping guns in an unsafe manner
- otherwise engaging in shady behaviour
- rubbish and waste hoarders

etc etc

In the grand scheme of things you've got it easy

Guava

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 218
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #15 on: May 04, 2016, 04:00:03 PM »
I have a neighbor that does things like that too. We just call him the goofy neighbor. It took some time, but we figured out he is just a genuinely good and lonely guy that is trying to help out. We started asking him why he did some of his goofy things in the hour long conversations we got trapped in and found out he had pretty logical answers for everything...somehow.

As for fence or shrubs, your best bet might be to ask him his opinion. Tell him you want to add some beauty to your yard. If you work with him, he will be less likely to cut branches.

frugaliknowit

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1671
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #16 on: May 04, 2016, 04:33:10 PM »
Your neighbor is a bit obsessive and quirky, but REALLY, I'd take him over someone who does not take care of their place and is a pig.  As for mowing your grass, etc.:  Just let it go!

Reynolds531

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 298
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #17 on: May 04, 2016, 04:44:59 PM »
I would wait until you see him back out of his driveway and drive away.

Then I would mow his entire property.

.....giggles and runs away.

bobechs

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1068
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #18 on: May 04, 2016, 04:47:04 PM »
This guy is no doubt a major rectal spasm for you, but consider that he has neighbor problems too.

Viz, he has you for a neighbor.  So ease up.

Dezrah

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 458
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #19 on: May 04, 2016, 04:54:57 PM »
Fwiw, I get it. I understand you're listing some of these details not even because they affect you but because they convey that the guy is generally weird and unsettling.

Feeling uncomfortable about going outside your house for fear of being accosted by a windbag is upsetting and is destined to sour your love for your house.

My FIL is also a windbag. He doesn't hear a word anyone has to say and will just talk at you for hours if you let him. I would first suggest you up your own personal conversation skills so that you are better able to interject and let yourself talk or excuse yourself. It will feel like you're being rude but I promise there is no other way; he probably grew up in a household/culture where this was normal. Once you get the rhythm right, you will no longer dread seeing him and he will probably still like you personally (which is good since you never want to be enemies with your neighbors).

Beyond that, close your blinds at night. I left my husband's family phone plan because same FiL would check my call log. Boundaries, they're nice.

Neustache

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1189
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #20 on: May 04, 2016, 04:56:50 PM »
This guy maybe think he is doing you a favor, but for people like us, it feels like he's violating what should be well-known boundaries (our property lines). 

Go into it assuming the best about him:  quirky neighbor who may think he's helping.

Personally, I'd probably plant a nice hedge of boxwoods along the edge to make a more noticeable boundary, and befriend the guy.  I like boundaries, I like them respected.  I also like to be a friendly neighbor. 

iknowiyam

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 178
    • The Honest Yam
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #21 on: May 04, 2016, 05:09:42 PM »
FWIW I live next to a similar guy. We did nothing for a awhile and just put up with his extreme noise pollution, light pollution (crazy flood light for "safety" coming in our back window) and trespassing (both mowing a section of our lawn and sending the chemical guy on a portion of our property to spray), etc.

ADVICE: Be PATIENT. Get to know him a little better. Know your city, county, and/or HOA rules about property and noise control. Know your property line. Take deep breath. Starting a full-out battle could get ugly or expensive. Limit your biggest concerns to ones that actually break rules.

Here is what we did:

(1) Got black-out shades to deal with flood light.

(2) We asked him not to mow part of our lawn (which he did not agree) and left it at that - UNTIL he started interrupting our walks to approach us tell us how our yard looks "like hell" and that we need to cut, weed, etc. He even called the city on us, but we were not actually in violation of any ordinance. Our yard really wasn't bad; he was just annoyed with us. He also dished out a veiled threat towards our business, reminding us how many of our clients attend his church.

(3) Got a property survey, $375. Once he was fully aware of EXACTLY where the property line was he got at least a little bit better. Turns out we own half of every single one of his precious back yard trees...

(4) Actually called his weed treatment service and politely informed them of property line markers and told them to stay off our property. They tried to shift blame to him, but I informed them our neighbor is aware of the property line and that they are to stay off my property. They agreed.

(5) Got friendlier with his polite and sweet wife. That was easy and pleasant. I think this helped a lot.

(6) Got friendlier with his church. We did not go to his church or anything, just made point to say we know their fellow congregation member when we met people who went there - never said anything bad, treated his acquaintance as a pleasant one.

Now he stays entirely off our property and does not complain about our lawn maintenance. It took 1.5 years to get to this point. Take your time. Set boundaries. Carefully pick your battles.

FYI: Legally, depending on your state, ignoring the problem entirely could actually lead to him taking legal possession of some of your land (after many years). Avoiding this was our primary goal.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2016, 05:16:39 PM by iknowiyam »

NonprofitER

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 164
  • Location: Texas
  • Reaching FIRE w/ High Purpose (Low Pay) Nonprofit
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #22 on: May 04, 2016, 05:12:56 PM »
I feel for you. I know a lot of the responses are along the lines of "What's the big deal?", but I also know that typing anecdotes objectively onto a screen is different than actually living them. The interpersonal nuances, the 'creep' factor, etc. are hard for people to actually sense  via reading it on a screen. We had a super senile bachelor neighbor once who kept his front door open at all times during the day, and would stand gaurd/keep watch of the street during about 40% of the day as something of a self-appointed neighborhood watch. It was very off-putting even though it didn't "hurt" us. (Of course, when someone's house got robbed, he was the first person everyone wanted to talk to - since we all assumed he did strange things like keep track of cars, license plate numbers, etc...).

Anyway, I'd probably gradually work towards some privacy fencing or boxwoods. It's not an emergency. If you react too soon, it'll feel reactive financially, and/or give him the idea you hate him - but over time, if you gradually work towards creating boundaries (literal and conversational) he'll probably "get it". 

Tjat

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 562
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #23 on: May 04, 2016, 07:43:19 PM »
weak sauce man.

Growing up I had a neighbor that inherited his step-fathers home, left his dangerous dog unleashed and unfed, and had a hobby of revving his car engines multiple hours of the day. One time, he set up a tape recorder, put a brick on his gas pedal, and left for an hour.


justajane

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2147
  • Location: Midwest
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #24 on: May 04, 2016, 07:57:16 PM »
This is pretty tame overall. I'm sure you'll get some stories that will make your situation seem rosy in comparison. I've had a bipolar neighbor who lurked at all hours, waiting to chat when I went out my front door. I've had a prostitute live next door. And I think I've had it pretty easy all things considered. Our last two batches of neighbors mow their lawn about 2-3 times a summer, and that's just the center of the lawn. They leave the perimeter wild, which breeds chiggers and creates a habitat for the snakes. The same house had a broken down truck parked in the middle of the yard...for an entire year.

My friend had a bipolar neighbor who would stand on her lawn and yell profanities and threats at all hours. She would hide food in random places so that it would stink to high heaven and cause maggots. It was deliberate and very aggressive. That shit was crazy, and it's very hard to get someone like that institutionalized.

Seriously, I would describe your neighbor as eccentric at best. I know it's annoying, but it's not insurmountable.

Hell is other people sometimes.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2016, 07:59:32 PM by justajane »

ReadySetMillionaire

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1174
  • Location: The Buckeye State
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #25 on: May 04, 2016, 08:19:30 PM »
I feel for you. I know a lot of the responses are along the lines of "What's the big deal?", but I also know that typing anecdotes objectively onto a screen is different than actually living them. The interpersonal nuances, the 'creep' factor, etc. are hard for people to actually sense  via reading it on a screen. We had a super senile bachelor neighbor once who kept his front door open at all times during the day, and would stand gaurd/keep watch of the street during about 40% of the day as something of a self-appointed neighborhood watch. It was very off-putting even though it didn't "hurt" us. (Of course, when someone's house got robbed, he was the first person everyone wanted to talk to - since we all assumed he did strange things like keep track of cars, license plate numbers, etc...).

Anyway, I'd probably gradually work towards some privacy fencing or boxwoods. It's not an emergency. If you react too soon, it'll feel reactive financially, and/or give him the idea you hate him - but over time, if you gradually work towards creating boundaries (literal and conversational) he'll probably "get it".


This guy gets it.

I said earlier "I'll go on," and because my neighbor apparently isn't crazy enough based on the above, let's continue.

I know the previous owners (the husband is a priest at a church that I've been to a couple times). Mr. Neighbor would fertilize while their two and three year old kids were outside playing in the driveway  (and parents were outside). The fertilizer would cake the driveway and get all over the kids toys. Mr. Neighbor didn't apologize. Cops were apparently called and everything.

Mr. Neighbor also called the wife's parents and said he thought she was a victim of domestic abuse. Why? Because she was mowing the lawn. That's a man's job according to Mr. Neighbor, and he put the impetus on himself to call her parents and tell them as much.

As for those pine trees I mentioned earlier, they are a good 20 feet off of his property. The other neighbor put up a fence because Mr. Neighbor wouldn't stop cutting his grass, either.

Mr. Neighbor has also brought a lawsuit against the neighbor across the street just last year. The other neighbor was in the middle of treatment for esophageal cancer. The lawsuit was dismissed within two months.

Again, I could go on and on and on. This guy has absolutely no respect for his neighbors or their boundaries.

So I hope I've now sufficiently met my burden of proving how nuts this guy is. This isn't some lonely old guy. He's malicious and I don't want to deal with him.

So I'll ask again, any ideas?

Blatant

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 175
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #26 on: May 04, 2016, 09:09:54 PM »
Based solely on what I've read, I'd take him over you. But I probably don't know what I'm talking about.

lbmustache

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 930
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #27 on: May 04, 2016, 09:57:07 PM »
People here are not being helpful. Annoying neighbors are the worst and living next to someone like this would be very annoying.

I would just suck up the $1300 and build the fence. IMO $1300 is a small price to pay for some semblance of sanity/normalcy. Maybe get tinted windows for the home too to keep his snoopy eyes out. Which will also help with heat.

Chrissy

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 971
  • Age: 42
  • Location: Chicago
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #28 on: May 04, 2016, 10:19:26 PM »

...Mr. Neighbor would fertilize while their two and three year old kids were outside playing in the driveway  (and parents were outside). The fertilizer would cake the driveway and get all over the kids toys. Mr. Neighbor didn't apologize. Cops were apparently called and everything.

Mr. Neighbor also called the wife's parents and said he thought she was a victim of domestic abuse. Why? Because she was mowing the lawn. That's a man's job according to Mr. Neighbor, and he put the impetus on himself to call her parents and tell them as much.

As for those pine trees I mentioned earlier, they are a good 20 feet off of his property. The other neighbor put up a fence because Mr. Neighbor wouldn't stop cutting his grass, either.

Mr. Neighbor has also brought a lawsuit against the neighbor across the street just last year. The other neighbor was in the middle of treatment for esophageal cancer. The lawsuit was dismissed within two months.

...So I'll ask again, any ideas?

Holy shit!  Option 1, option 1, option 1, option 1.  Fence fence fence fence fence fence.

Kaikou

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 503
  • Location: United States
  • Kermit is like a box of chocolates
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #29 on: May 05, 2016, 03:03:05 AM »
Just build a fence and be done with it. I really don't think outside opinions really matter for this. Kind of seems like you made up your mind already.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3057
  • Location: Emmaus, PA
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #30 on: May 05, 2016, 05:27:28 AM »
Fence it is, then.

Ann

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 270
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #31 on: May 05, 2016, 05:38:48 AM »
(1) Rakes snow from his lawn into the street, and then hoses down the snow in the street;
Legitimate question from a poster who only sees one day of snow every two years: doesn't hosing down the snow in the street make the road icier, and therefore more dangerous?  Or does it not matter, because people have already winterized their vehicles?
In Houston, the entire city shuts down if there is even a smidgeon of ice.

plog

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 217
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #32 on: May 05, 2016, 07:15:02 AM »
Hosing the snow, could, but most likely doesn't make the road icier.  Water doesn't immediately freeze at 32, so even if its only 25, most of it will go to the sewer.

RSM sounds like the wife comedians make fun of -- she presents her husband with what seems to be a serious problem, the husband presents a matter of fact resolution and assesment of the situation, wife counters with--'I just want you to listen to me and tell me I am right in feeling this way'.

RSM doesn't want our advice, he wants a sounding board.  So, RSM--yes you look pretty, those pants don't make you look fat, Sheryl in Accounting is a total bitch and you should definitely put up that fence for that monster of a neighbor you have.   

 
« Last Edit: May 05, 2016, 07:17:07 AM by plog »

NonprofitER

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 164
  • Location: Texas
  • Reaching FIRE w/ High Purpose (Low Pay) Nonprofit
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #33 on: May 05, 2016, 07:29:55 AM »

...Mr. Neighbor would fertilize while their two and three year old kids were outside playing in the driveway  (and parents were outside). The fertilizer would cake the driveway and get all over the kids toys. Mr. Neighbor didn't apologize. Cops were apparently called and everything.

Mr. Neighbor also called the wife's parents and said he thought she was a victim of domestic abuse. Why? Because she was mowing the lawn. That's a man's job according to Mr. Neighbor, and he put the impetus on himself to call her parents and tell them as much.

As for those pine trees I mentioned earlier, they are a good 20 feet off of his property. The other neighbor put up a fence because Mr. Neighbor wouldn't stop cutting his grass, either.

Mr. Neighbor has also brought a lawsuit against the neighbor across the street just last year. The other neighbor was in the middle of treatment for esophageal cancer. The lawsuit was dismissed within two months.

...So I'll ask again, any ideas?

Holy shit!  Option 1, option 1, option 1, option 1.  Fence fence fence fence fence fence.

Yep. This is certifiably crazy.  Fertilizer use is a known contributor to nasty childhood cancers. 

VaCPA

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 220
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #34 on: May 05, 2016, 07:32:34 AM »
(7) Puts dirt and the debris from the curb and sweeps it into my yard.

I had a 63yr old neighbor across the street that blew his leaves & grass clippings in my yard for 5-6 years. I finally confronted him about it, to which he denied the grass clippings and said that every leaf in the neighborhood was from my two trees. He was just giving them back. Keep in mind there were literally hundreds of trees in our neighborhood. The story ends with me telling this 63 yr old that he won't be able to do either soon because I'm going to shove his leaf blower up his &$%.  Not my proudest moment. Don't be the guy who threatens bodily harm to a senior citizen.

Haha, this made me laugh and also I can relate because I've had a few regrettable moments like that in my life. OP, I think the moral is life is short and choose your battles because a lot of the time it's just not worth it. Now we haven't experienced it firsthand, but you asked an anonymous msg board for opinions and I think the consensus is it's not worth making a big deal out of. If you think the fence will improve your sanity and decrease your frustration enough to warrant the cost then by all means do it.

ReadySetMillionaire

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1174
  • Location: The Buckeye State
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #35 on: May 05, 2016, 07:34:16 AM »
Just build a fence and be done with it. I really don't think outside opinions really matter for this. Kind of seems like you made up your mind already.

Ya, I think it's important that "do nothing" was not one of my options. I've already made my mind up that I want some kind of privacy. I was more looking for creative alternatives that I may not have considered (e.g., this forum had a 150+ post thread on whether to use toilet paper or not...I figured I might get some similarly "out of the box" ideas).

hops

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 297
  • Location: United States
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #36 on: May 05, 2016, 07:36:11 AM »
Fence it is, then.

Yep. And if you'd posted the truly batshit stuff he's done to other neighbors to begin with, rather than the mildly annoying stuff he's done to you personally, you would've gotten the answers you wanted sooner.

purple monkey

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 323
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #37 on: May 05, 2016, 07:44:48 AM »
Option 1.

+1

Yes, I too, have had neighbors from Hades.  I moved 700+ miles away because I had two AWFUL neighbors (parties and bands, etc.)
I could go on and on, but won't hijack.

It will be the best money you have spent and it will hopefully add to the value of your home.

So sorry.

Also, find out when his birthday is between now and the fence. He would probably tell you every event in his life-very lonely dude.
Mail him a birthday card.

I know, sounds counter- intuitive, but would not hurt.

GOOD LUCK!

big_owl

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 705
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #38 on: May 05, 2016, 07:45:28 AM »
Responses in this thread remind me why I don't live in a city and prefer the woods over other people.  It's bad enough to be stuck with an annoying neighbor that you can't effectively do anything about, but then you have a bunch of judgie-judgersons telling you it's all in your head and you're the problem.  To the exurbs....

No real advice OP but I feel your pain.  I like fences, and you can take some solace in that you'll probably outlast him if he's older.

One of my neighbors when they first moved in 12 years ago got a large dog and just let it run all over the place all day and night and basically kept it like a wild animal.  It would shit all over my yard and I would step in piles of it whenever I cut my grass.  I asked them twice if they could please control dog...didn't make any difference.  So eventually one day I flipped out and gathered up about 8 piles of dog crap with a shovel and threw them all on his driveway.  He came over and confronted me about it, I told him I was going to keep doing it and to basically STFU.  It didn't exactly foster a friendship...I think we've talked about 4 times in 12 years, but the dog no longer shits in my yard and I never have to deal with him again.  In fact he's turned out to be a pretty good neighbor - almost invisible to me, like he's not even there. 

JZinCO

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 701
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #39 on: May 05, 2016, 07:50:41 AM »

Let's list some things this guy does on a regular basis:

(1) Rakes snow from his lawn into the street, and then hoses down the snow in the street;

(2) Washes mailbox with a bucket and rag right at dusk, and pretty much peers into other houses for 10 minutes while he pretends to wash this mailbox;

(3) Mows his lawn, then blows it with a leafblower, then weedwacks it (the entire yard, not just the edges);

(4) Mows and fertilizes up to my driveway (a good 10 feet onto my property)...I asked him to stop and he said "I've been doing this since 1978;"

(5) Any time I go outside he comes and talks to me about how much he hates the other neighbors, how things used to be different, etc. All of these conversations do not end unless/until my fiance comes and asks me for help (he talks 95% of the time);

(6) Edges/trims my mailbox;

(7) Puts dirt and the debris from the curb and sweeps it into my yard.
Mr. Neighbor also called the wife's parents and said he thought she was a victim of domestic abuse. Why? Because she was mowing the lawn. That's a man's job according to Mr. Neighbor, and he put the impetus on himself to call her parents and tell them as much.


Not to make light but these behaviors are neurotically hilarious. Have you considered writing and selling a screenplay about Mr. Neighbor to pay for a privacy fence?

SomedayStache

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 761
  • Live Long and Prosper
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #40 on: May 05, 2016, 07:55:29 AM »
Whatever you do, no matter how you are seething inside, you should maintain a facade of good relations with the neighbor. 

Trust me.

Once things becoming openly hostile it is all downhill.  I have seen this escalate to the point that lawsuits occur, the neighbor dispute shows up on the local evening news, or people actually move out of their house because it gets so bad.

Fishindude

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2135
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #41 on: May 05, 2016, 07:58:45 AM »
I don't dislike my neighbors, not do I consider myself an unfriendly neighbor, but I put a fence on the property line between myself and my neighbors to make it clear where their activities end and mine start.  My biggest gripe was their pets having free run, and debris / trash from their places blowing onto mine and them not cleaning it up.  The fence stops all of that stuff, and we get along fine.

KCM5

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 871
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #42 on: May 05, 2016, 08:05:59 AM »
I think you should do a fence AND a living fence in the front. The three foot fence would protect the living fence from neighbor damage.

Make sure you have good curtains/blinds.

Also, I second all of the people that say to maintain a friendly relationship. You do not want to be on crazy's bad side.

Mr. Green

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1986
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Wilmington, NC
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #43 on: May 05, 2016, 08:11:36 AM »
Your first post makes it hard to understand who is the contrarian. It could have just been that you were uptight and this guy was being relatively harmless. Your follow on comment clears that up nicely. A fence is your best option. It sets clear boundaries and I'd gladly pay $1,000 to eliminate the kind of maliciousness you describe.

Miss Piggy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1329
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #44 on: May 05, 2016, 11:08:26 AM »
$1300? Do the fence, and don't delay.

We had similar issues with a neighbor (junkyard in the backyard, one never-finished exterior project after another, never mowing the lawn, tons of trashcans and other junk in the yard, etc.). Called the city, which cited him. He threatened us. Neighbors behind us begged us not to put up a fence, so we have spent THOUSANDS (not a typo) on a "living fence" of mature trees, etc., some of which have died. Mature trees ain't cheap, and we didn't want to wait for young trees to mature in order to have any kind of privacy.

In hindsight, I soooooooo wish we had done the fence. Would have been a helluva lot cheaper.

Spiffy

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 167
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #45 on: May 05, 2016, 11:10:53 AM »
This makes me miss my old neighbor. He was actually a nice guy, but very old and very bored. So as the first flakes of snow started to fall, he started up his riding snow plow and would ride in circles for hours. It was annoying, but sort of soothing in a way. Plus, he plowed my driveway, too. Now I live in Texas, so no snow plows, but my current neighbor (also nice, old, and bored) does a similar thing with the leaf blower. Once I saw him standing in his driveway on a windy day holding it like a machine gun and blowing away the leave as the were falling! I thought it was the funniest thing I had seen in a long time. My other neighbor is annoying, but in a stupid way. She waters the grass all day every day. I can not imagine what her water bill is. I have muttered so much about it that now my kids complain about how much water she is wasting. But I just smile and wave. It is never good to argue with your neighbor if you don't have to. But your guy sounds sort of nuts, not just old and bored

Cassie

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5793
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #46 on: May 05, 2016, 11:25:51 AM »
I had a truly crazy neighbor that would stand outside and yell all night and it was hot and we had to have the windows open. We would call the cops and they would tell him to quit and an hour later he would be doing it again. We finally had to buy room size air conditioners for the bedrooms so we could sleep.  This guy is probably lonely and OCD.  I would just be nice to him. When I was young I had an old guy on my walking route that would wait outside to talk to me. It was annoying but then 1 day he tells me he is lonely since his wife died. I then build in an extra 10 min's to stop and talk to him. When he got cancer I was the only person that he had to talk too. Really sad.

Fireball

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 235
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #47 on: May 05, 2016, 12:26:33 PM »
Yeah man. Get the fence. Don't wait. Just make up some excuse as to why you need it when he asks. And he's gonna ask. The other crazy stuff you mentioned helped paint a better picture of this guy.

Catbert

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1731
  • Location: Southern California
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #48 on: May 05, 2016, 12:52:21 PM »
When you do the fence be sure you know exactly where the property line is - and ensure the fence is a couple of inches on your property.  check out bldg permit requirements and ensure you pull permits if required.  Yes, even if no one else ever pulls permits.

Don't make an enemy of this guy.  He has a lot more free time and energy than you do.

AZDude

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1298
Re: How Should I Deal with My Crazy Neighbor?
« Reply #49 on: May 05, 2016, 12:57:23 PM »
Be nice but firm. Build a small fence, or even do something simple like put down a ceramic boundary(like the red half-circles) at the property line. Something that clearly defines where one property starts.