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Can trees cause neighborhood disputes?

On Behalf of | Mar 18, 2024 | Real Estate Law

Everyone dreams of living in a close-knit neighborhood. A community that looks out and takes care of each other like family. But no matter how close you are with your neighbors, differences and preferences could still cause conflicts. Neighbors may quarrel over varied reasons, big or small—noises, fences, parking and even trees.

Clashes over trees may seem simple, but they can escalate into a major obstacle when left unsolved. While a tree adds beauty to a garden, it can injure neighbors or damage a neighbor’s property when it grows too big. Here are four common instances when trees cause neighborhood disputes.

The tree’s branches and roots grow over to your property

When unkept trees grow too big, their branches and roots can cross the fence. Branches can fall over and cause damage to a neighbor’s property. A falling tree branch and protruding root can even cause injuries. If the concern is left unresolved after talking to your neighbor, you could require your neighbor to pay for the injury or damage their tree caused you.

The tree leaves fall over to your property

Leaves, acorns or any similar fruit of a tree comes off naturally. If these end up on your property, it will become your responsibility. However, this conflict could also escalate when your neighbor’s tree covers your lawn with dried leaves and acorns, leaving you cleaning it up for hours.

The tree harms your plants

There are types of trees that are considered invasive to other plants. If your neighbor’s tree harms your plants, you could require them to pay for the damage and remove their tree.

The tree blocks your view

A property’s value sometimes depends on its view. The view from your home also affects your preference and security. There are cities with ordinances protecting the view of a homeowner. If the tree owner refuses to clear up your view, you can bring the matter to the city council. On the other hand, you can contact your Homeowners’ Association when there is no city ordinance. Often, the contract that homeowners sign when purchasing a home includes rules on trees.

Neighborhood disputes can be frustrating at times. Legal options are available for you when your neighbor does not want to cooperate and compromise to solve the issue. The guidance of a real estate attorney could help you protect your rights as a homeowner.