Neighbors revoked previously agreed upon access

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Jacquelyn1215

Member
Jun 1, 2021
11
Austin TX
In order to access our backyard for our pool construction, we would need to temporarily take down the fence between our yard and our neighbor's yard. They are not fans of the pool idea in and of itself, but agreed to this back in July. We provided them a document outlining what we'd assume responsibility for (fencing, irrigation, sod) but our big miss was not getting their agreement in writing... 🤦‍♀️

The project is already underway; we've paid our BYOP fee, have HOA approval, getting close to things beginning. Today they called to let us know they wanted to talk about the pool and long story short, informed my husband that they decided they no longer will allow us to remove the fence between our properties nor can their yard be damaged at all because of this project (magically "forgot" that they had even agreed in the first place). Without going into detail, nightmare situation.

We are working with our BYOP guy as well as waiting to hear back from the excavator in terms of how they'll get into our backyard to do the dig. We have 5'4" to work with inside the fence in question, and the other side of the house really isn't feasible as our AC unit + existing patio are on that side. Has anyone ran into this as we are bound and determined to figure out how to make this work now with this major wrench being thrown into our plans. FWIW, we are in Austin, working with BYOP on an IG pool and anticipate there being plenty of rock... Thanks in advance for any ideas/suggestions!
 

chiefwej

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Jun 12, 2011
3,734
Tucson
Believe it or not, I live in a community where there is just 5 feet between most houses and the lot line, and a 5’ block wall on the line. Yet we, along with many of our neighbors have built in-ground pools. Some pool builder have moved AC units or temporarily removed gas meters. My pool builder used an excavator with tracks that could be tucked under, allowing it to pass through a 4’ opening, and a small skid loader. There was a “limited access premium” added to the contract, but it was negligible (less than $2,000). There is is always a solution.
 

Jacquelyn1215

Member
Jun 1, 2021
11
Austin TX

Jacquelyn1215

Member
Jun 1, 2021
11
Austin TX
Believe it or not, I live in a community where there is just 5 feet between most houses and the lot line, and a 5’ block wall on the line. Yet we, along with many of our neighbors have built in-ground pools. Some pool builder have moved AC units or temporarily removed gas meters. My pool builder used an excavator with tracks that could be tucked under, allowing it to pass through a 4’ opening, and a small skid loader. There was a “limited access premium” added to the contract, but it was negligible (less than $2,000). There is is always a solution.
Sweet. Helpful to know. We are also in the mindset of "this will work somehow!" As we shared with our neighbors when they reneged on their offer, be prepared for it to potentially take longer now (if we have to use smaller equipment or something).
 

Kathleen2252

Well-known member
Apr 28, 2021
144
Los Angeles
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Chlorine
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Hi.
When they built our pool 30 years ago, their access was about 8 feet.
They used a mini "digger" and had it all dug out in 2 days.
Trust me, they will find a way.
I am curious about the neighbors?
Did they not tell you why?
People are so strange.
Our neighbors behind us cut 1/2 of the seeds off our palm tree that were dropping into their yard.
They came over and stated they'd cut the other half off for $60.00.
🙄
Perhaps I'm sensitive but I was offended as they pick pomegranates off our tree when they think we're not home.
I've given up trying to understand why people are weird.
 
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Jacquelyn1215

Member
Jun 1, 2021
11
Austin TX
Hi.
When they built our pool 30 years ago, their access was about 8 feet.
They used a mini "digger" and had it all dug out in 2 days.
Trust me, they will find a way.
I am curious about the neighbors?
Did they not tell you why?
People are so strange.
Our neighbors behind us cut 1/2 of the seeds off our palm tree that were dropping into their yard.
They came over and stated they'd cut the other half off for $60.00.
🙄
Perhaps I'm sensitive but I was offended as they pick pomegranates off our tree when they think we're not home.
I've given up trying to understand why people are weird.
They are retired and older. They don't want four months of their live to be "chaos" because of construction. That's literally what she told my husband. She wants them to enjoy their retired life in peace and quiet - so, not sure why they chose to move to a suburban neighborhood full families with children. Forget about what my family and our child want. 🤷‍♀️ Hit the nail on the head: people are weird.
 
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joboo7777

Bronze Supporter
Aug 8, 2020
234
McKinney, TX
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They are retired and older. They don't want four months of their live to be "chaos" because of construction. That's literally what she told my husband. She wants them to enjoy their retired life in peace and quiet - so, not sure why they chose to move to a suburban neighborhood full families with children. Forget about what my family and our child want. 🤷‍♀️ Hit the nail on the head: people are weird.
Regardless of their decision to deny access they will NOT get their piece and quiet during your build. And there’s nothing they can do about that.😉

a lot of noise on the way!
 
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Kathleen2252

Well-known member
Apr 28, 2021
144
Los Angeles
Pool Size
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So odd .
My husband and I had three little kids when we bought our home.
Now we're old and retired too but I love watching the young children play outside.
Sometimes they swim in our pool with our grandson.
Our neighbors are mostly young as the homes are large.
Just hearing the kids laugh is a blessing.
I dont get it.
They should move to a retirement community where they can listen to ambulances coming and going 24 hours a day.
 

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Kathleen2252

Well-known member
Apr 28, 2021
144
Los Angeles
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PB here in CA commonly use port a pottys during construction.
Have them park one 2 inches inside your property line for 4 months.!!
🤣🤣🤣
 

Casey

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Apr 16, 2007
12,201
SW PA
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I'm so sorry. I'm going through a similar experience with my Borough and a new road going in. Right now, my neighbor is my only hope to allow me access and I have to take one of his evergreen bushes out. I'm going to try and save it since we're doing a fall install.
 

KCNM

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May 20, 2021
107
Tampa Bay, FL
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By the way, unless you were giving them something for the access, having a signed written agreement would have meant nothing. Contracts require consideration to be valid, which means that there's an actual exchange of value. And even then, they still could have backed out last minute like this, and simply forced you to sue them, because that's the only way to force resolution of a contract dispute.

So you didn't really do anything wrong here. They would still be doing this, even if you had a written agreement. And the best you could have hoped for at this point in time would be to sue them for any damages resulting from their non-performance of the contract. Because it's way too late in the game to take them to court to enforce their participation in the contract.
 
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Newdude

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
10,784
NY
Have they ever seen a 4 month build ? They probably don’t realize that it’s 4 noisy days and 116 waiting for the next step days. (Not including the patio afterwards)

Tell them they need access for one day to dig and the fence can go back.

Make sure to do a HONKING patio afterwards to ensure they hear the saw going for a month.
 
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PoolGate

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Jun 7, 2017
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In the long run it would probably be cheaper to remove the AC units while they do the work anyway. Good luck!
 
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Gladius Nova

Well-known member
Dec 29, 2016
328
Fair Oaks Ranch, TX
Yeah. I understand. When we did our build, we STILL had to get written approval from one of the builders to access our yard through the empty lot beside us. That actually turned into kind of a "nightmare" because they made a big deal out of it and it dragged everything out for an additional month AND they wanted a $2000 deposit in case we "messed something up". This is just an empty lot full of nothing but weeds we are talking about here....smh.
 

poolnoobgrandma

Gold Supporter
Sep 15, 2018
676
Seminole, FL
Maybe we are not fully considering the neighbor's situation and the reasons for their decisions.

It's never good when neighbors can't get along.

Hopefully, you can stay on good terms.
Agree. 4 months could seem like a long time to go without a fence, and to be looking at pool construction mess, when it's not even your pool. Also agree that asking for access during the dig ONLY, and offering them compensation for the inconvenience might be worthwhile. Not all pool builders are careful or considerate about property. Ours tore down our fence, with our approval, but continually left the temporary replacement barrier open which was a hazard to our dog getting out of the yard and to the children in the preschool behind our home getting through and into the water-filled pit.
The dig should be a couple of days. Add one day to take down the fence and one day to put the fence back up, and you're talking about 4-5 days maybe. If you are building a pool, you are planning to stay in the house for a while. The pool build is a season. Your relationship with your neighbors could be the rest of your lives.
Find a workaround, take a deep breath, let it go, and enjoy your pool!
 

Kathleen2252

Well-known member
Apr 28, 2021
144
Los Angeles
Pool Size
16000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
They're just being difficult, plain and simple.
There's no logical reason to make things hard for these people.
Being neighborly and doing the right thing works both ways.
 
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BowserB

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Jul 29, 2018
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Jacquelyn, I hope you're taking the retaliatory suggestions here as just off the cuff venting. Escalating issues with neighbors never helps and often invites return escalation. Just be nice, and when your pool is finished, you won't owe your neighbors any thanks or invitations to come over for a swim in your pool.
 

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