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What to know about installing a fence

California homeowners will want to make sure that they consider their neighbors before putting up a fence. This means ensuring that the fence meets zoning requirements and is entirely within the owner's property line. It can also be a good idea to explain to a neighbor why the fence is being installed. Those reasons could include to add privacy, to keep a pet from running off, or to enhance the look of a backyard.

Prior to installing a fence, the owner should make sure to have a survey done to ensure proper placement. Usually, an installation company will dig holes about 36 inches from the actual property line. Speak with an HOA representative prior to selecting a fence. This is because there may be limitations as to how high the fence can be, what color it is or what style a homeowner can use.

To help pacify a neighbor, it may be a good idea to place the finished side of the fence toward his or her yard. It can also be a good idea to place it toward the street depending on the layout of the property. However, there is little a neighbor can do as long as the fence meets regulations and is not a danger to anyone.

Ideally, homeowners will take whatever steps are necessary to balance their rights as property owners with the rights of their neighbors. However, if these actions don't avoid a neighbor dispute, the owner might want the help of a real estate attorney when attempting to reach a resolution, whether through mediation or in court.

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