I’ve always made a point of getting along with my neighbours as well as possible and I think most people have the same sentiment. There’s really no need for the stress involved in living next door to someone you have beef with. But did you realise that something as simple as a fence has the potential to cause a rift between otherwise good neighbours?
When installing new fence panels, it’s good practice to fit the fence so that the good side faces your neighbour’s property. The side with the posts and rails can then be seen from your garden so that your neighbour has a nicer view. However, in reality, nobody really wants to have the ugly side and that’s where the good neighbour fence comes in.
Good neighbour fences allow both parties to have an attractive side. These fences are built in such a way that the posts and railings are hidden inside panels on either side of the fence so are much more aesthetically pleasing, regardless of which side you look at them from.
The notion of the good neighbour fence originated in the USA but it’s something that UK homeowners are now becoming aware of. If you’re considering erecting a new fence, you might want to get in touch with your neighbours and discuss the potential of installing such a fence.
Are There Any Laws On Who Gets The Good Side?
One of the things that we always have to consider when constructing anything in the UK is whether there are associated laws. Building Regulations dictate what can be built and where while there are also things like planning permission to consider.
The good thing with fences is that, as long as they don’t exceed a certain height, you don’t need to worry about obtaining permission. Moreover, provided that the fence does not go over the boundary and onto your neighbour’s property, you’re free to install them at your leisure.
However, there are no laws pertaining to who gets the good side. If you really don’t want to look at those ugly railings and posts then there’s nothing to say that you cannot install the fence with the pretty side facing your garden.
Some neighbours may be quite happy to put up with this in the knowledge that its your fence, you paid for it so why shouldn’t you look at the good side?
Other neighbours may feel a little hard done by and might raise an issue with the fact that their view is now tainted by the ugly side of the fence. Of course, you’re under no obligation to alter the fence but you may have to put up with some cross words and conflict.
Who Pays For A Good Neighbour Fence?
Where good neighbour fences are concerned, the price is typically split 50/50 between both parties. This is why, when installing a good neighbour fence, you take the time to talk with your neighbours and come up with a plan that will benefit you both.
What you should never do is go ahead and install the fence before sending your neighbour an unexpected invoice! That’s a surefire way to end up in a battle.
A good neighbour fence is a great way to solve the problem of who gets the good side. Nobody wants to relax in their garden and have to look at ugly railings and posts but in many cases, that’s what we’re faced with.
In days gone by, it was common courtesy to allow your neighbour the good side of the fence but thanks to an American trend, we can now all have a good view with a double sided good looking fence that each neighbour pays half for.