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Neighbours tree damaged my garage - What do?

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garth
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PostPosted: 12:03 - 12 May 2018    Post subject: Neighbours tree damaged my garage - What do? Reply with quote

I've one of those horrible pre fab garages, that leaks. On further investigation, the garden that backs on to the garage has a tree, quite a big bastard, that has grown into the top of the wall and roof, damaging it.

I want the tree gone so I can replace the roof.

I knocked the door of the owner of the house/tree and got a sob story. "I had no idea, I'm an elderly sick lady, all alone, with no money". "A charity had to help when my boiler broke" and "I need the shade from the trees for my health"

Not willing in any shape or form to get rid of said tree.

Where do I stand from a legal point of view in getting this sorted? It needs chopping down from her side really, but can I just chop bits off that are on my land and launch them over into her garden? Goes down to the trunk pretty much where it's grown outwards.
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J4mes
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PostPosted: 12:09 - 12 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe you are permitted to chop anything that comes over the boundary as long as you offer it back.

I have to do this every year as my neighbours tree/Bush things lean on my fence, which is within my boundary by a few inches.


also pretty sure you are permitted access to other people's property in order to carry out maintenance on your own.

inb4 "quote your source" Mr. Green

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garth
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PostPosted: 12:10 - 12 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Should probably add, only owned property 6 months, this has been damaged for way, way longer than that.
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Ste
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PostPosted: 12:21 - 12 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can cut down over hanging branches, they're the property of your neighbour so you have to give them back.

That doesn't mean throwing them over her fence though. Laughing

For the sake of keeping the peace, rather than just dumping them on her doorstep, tell her that you've cut down the over hanging branches as and sorry to ask such a stupid question but those branches are your property and I'm meant to return them to you. If you don't want them then I can dispose of them for you.

Had you not gone and knocked on her door then you could have encouraged the tree to die. Whistle

It sounds like you can do whatever you want as long as she still has some shade, she'd only notice if the tree fell down.

So if the tree were to start dying then you'd notice before she did and would have to let her know that it needs cutting down before that happens. Laughing

Just keep it cut back, she keeps her shade and you'll have a new garage. Job done, everyone's happy. Thumbs Up
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Rogerborg
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PostPosted: 19:04 - 12 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

She'll have millions under the mattress. Get in.
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thx1138
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PostPosted: 19:15 - 12 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

J4mes wrote:

also pretty sure you are permitted access to other people's property in order to carry out maintenance on your own.

inb4 "quote your source" Mr. Green

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I think it's a case of if you need access to other peoples property to carry out maintenance and they won't grant it, you can get a court order

I once chased some builders off who were trying to climb on my roof. My building is not attached to my neighbours. The builders were just trying to save money on a scaffold tower, and I told them to do one.
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MarJay
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PostPosted: 19:20 - 12 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's a difficult one. Not wanting to alienate your neighbours, or intimidate old ladies are both valid reasons however I'd be tempted to impress upon her that the tree has damaged the structure of your property, and that it would be well within your rights to claim off of her buildings insurance to have your garage repaired, because the tree is on her land (I'm not 100% sure if this is true, but it hardly matters).

Tell her that as an alternative you can cut the tree back so that you can access the rear of your property for repairs. You will make every effort to leave the tree unharmed, but you will need to remove parts of it to effect your repairs. On this occasion you won't resort to trying to claim off of her insurance, you just need her permission to cut the tree back. Then, take a chainsaw and cut away the trunk on your side so she can't see it. You could also hammer some copper nails in there if you're feeling particularly vindictive...

Hasta la vista Mr Tree...

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jnw010
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PostPosted: 20:06 - 12 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've read conflicting views on copper nails, as in some people reckon they aren't very effective. A brace and auger to bore a silent hole in the dead of night near the base, along with some root killer packed in there would do nicely.
A "friend" of mine had a neighbour who grew a 30' fast growing eucalyptus tree which completely shaded his garden. Neighbour then died suddenly and the house was vacant for a year while in probate. His ex wife cleared out anything worthwhile and left the garden to massively overgrow.
The tree died.
Shifty
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Ben90
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PostPosted: 19:48 - 13 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Drilling holes and filling with herbicide is actually incredibly obvious to spot as malicious damage once the cambium dies back. Often the tree survives but decays on one side, collapsing in full leaf some years later. In which case and if you're still in the property you should probably lawyer up.

Also pretty much everything Ste said. Thumbs Up
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Ste
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PostPosted: 19:54 - 13 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

MarJay wrote:
On this occasion you won't resort to trying to claim off of her insurance, you just need her permission to cut the tree back. Then, take a chainsaw and cut away the trunk on your side

You don't need her permission to cut overhanging branches.
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Ste
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PostPosted: 20:00 - 13 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

And claiming from her insurance wouldn't go anywhere because the garage was already damaged when the OP bought the property.
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carvell
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PostPosted: 20:28 - 13 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not sure you can just "claim off her insurance" in the same way you can do so for a car or bike.

If you wanted to invoice her for some damage I would imagine you'd need to find a solicitor then present her with a bill. How she funds it is up to her, insurance or not.

She doesn't even need to have buildings insurance (assuming she doesn't have a mortgage).
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mentalboy
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PostPosted: 03:01 - 14 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

jnw010 wrote:
I've read conflicting views on copper nails, as in some people reckon they aren't very effective.


Depends what you call 'effective', not as quick as petrol and a match but far less immediately obvious and more effective over time.
Mr. Boatbuilder can tell you that pre-drilling a ring of holes at the base would be necessary for the length of nail needed to have an effect on a mature tree, a marginally larger pilot hole would give a looser fit and enable removal of nails once they'd done their job, as no-one likes to see an unsightly ring of copper nail heads at the base of a tree. Whistle
Granny might well notice a great big hairy biker with his arse hanging out drilling into her tree though. Laughing
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grr666
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PostPosted: 08:17 - 14 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ben90 wrote:
Drilling holes and filling with herbicide is actually incredibly obvious to spot as malicious damage once the cambium dies back. Often the tree survives but decays on one side, collapsing in full leaf some years later. In which case and if you're still in the property you should probably lawyer up.

Also pretty much everything Ste said. Thumbs Up


Listen to this guy, he trees for a living. Hi Ben. Thumbs Up
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Rogerborg
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PostPosted: 08:35 - 14 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Question: if you just took a chainsaw to it, then declined to answer the door for a bit, what would the practical consequences be?
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grr666
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PostPosted: 09:48 - 14 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 'skint' and 'confused' old bag would suddenly remember the 150k under her mattress and instruct a solicitor
to pursue you in the courts for wilful damage to her property. Probably. Also might be worth checking if the tree in
question it has TPO on it. You don't want to be caught tampering with it if it has.

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/tree-preservation-orders-and-trees-in-conservation-areas
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Pjay
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PostPosted: 10:08 - 14 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

jnw010 wrote:
I've read conflicting views on copper nails, as in some people reckon they aren't very effective. A brace and auger to bore a silent hole in the dead of night near the base, along with some root killer packed in there would do nicely.
A "friend" of mine had a neighbour who grew a 30' fast growing eucalyptus tree which completely shaded his garden. Neighbour then died suddenly and the house was vacant for a year while in probate. His ex wife cleared out anything worthwhile and left the garden to massively overgrow.
The tree died.
Shifty


I've just spoken to my friend that is a Tree Surgeon and he says the most effective way to kill a tree off is to drill some holes into it and pour in some Creosote. He said it 'clogs the arteries' of the tree, suffocating it. Well making it die of thirst, but I got the gist.
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garth
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PostPosted: 11:24 - 14 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm leaving the country and the property will be letted - I want no aggro.

She's agreed to let me come in to her garden (steady, boys) and prune it away. I haven't negotiated waste etc and in all likelihood, won't, until I'm back in the UK. It can wait.
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Diggs
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PostPosted: 20:44 - 16 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

1st thing is check if it has a TPO as previous poster said. Also check to see if it is in a Conservation Area, and if either apply act accordingly... If not and no Planning Condition exists requiring retention (it goes on and on...), ask her if it is ok to prune/crown-lift or whatever is needed, and if she is prepared to go 50/50, as to leave it will result in more damage to your garage. If she agrees, all is good. If she still claims poverty, bite the bullet.

Get somebody capable of working to BS3998 with PI to do the work if any of it is difficult.

Don't think about killing it as this is a long-term process that could end up with the bugger blowing down and damaging house/garage/elderly neighbour with potentially expensive consequences.
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stephen_o
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PostPosted: 20:55 - 16 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

just recently bought the house - your surveyor and solictior are responsible for checking for damage before you occupy and dealing with it.

The neighbour should have insurance buildings, contents or both which will cover her liability as occupier of the property and if she owns the land then liability for the tree, if she doesn't own the land then the freeholder is liable.

Or you could just accept it as ...meh and get on with it.
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mentalboy
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PostPosted: 23:29 - 16 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pjay wrote:


I've just spoken to my friend that is a Tree Surgeon and he says the most effective way to kill a tree off is to drill some holes into it and pour in some Creosote. He said it 'clogs the arteries' of the tree, suffocating it. Well making it die of thirst, but I got the gist.


Does Creocote work as well? I'm sure many people have still got a tin of 'proper' Creosote stashed away in the back of the garden shed but it must be at least ten years since it's use, selling and buying were banned in the UK - both domestically and commercially.
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MCN
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PostPosted: 18:32 - 17 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

TLDR all.
You are not permitted to hack away at overhanging branches. If you disfigure or unbalance the tree you are commuting an offence.
Fruit that falls on your property must be handed to the owner of the tree. Picking or keeping fallen fruit is an offence.

Speak to your local council as rules are regional.
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Jewlio Rides Again LLB
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PostPosted: 18:56 - 17 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Prune it back to your boundary. Don't just launch it over her fence. Ask her would she like it back, when she says no, dispose of it. Simples.

Don't do what the c*nt over my wall tried when he was pruning some thorny thing on his side of the wall, and started throwing it over into mine. I went over, gathered it all up, and threw it straight back (I caught him in the act). He never did it since. Thumbs Up Don't know if it was the shock of incoming thorn bombs or the torrent of abuse. Laughing
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Jewlio Rides Again LLB
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PostPosted: 18:58 - 17 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a guide:

http://www.problemneighbours.co.uk/problems-with-neighbouring-trees-action-guide.html
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Ste
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PostPosted: 21:12 - 17 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

MCN wrote:
You are not permitted to hack away at overhanging branches. If you disfigure or unbalance the tree you are commuting an offence.

You're perfectly entitled to cut overhanging branches back.
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