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Yard Problems...Please Help

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by ARAMP1, Nov 27, 2006.

  1. ARAMP1

    ARAMP1 Aviator Extraordinaire

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    Okay, for the most part, the brotherhood here seems like a reasonable bunch of guys (and gals). So, I’ve got a question and need some opinions.

    I’ve lived in my house for just over a year now. It’s a new subdivision and the house right next door is finally being built. It’s probably a month or so away from being done. Anyway, it seems that the neighboring house’s back yard is low enough that water builds up there when it rains. So, the builder (actually the subcontractor) cut a sort of trench between our property lines. The only problem that I have with it is that they cut about five feet onto our yard. See pic.(sorry it is a pretty poor picture. I eyeballed the property line in with paint, so it may not be exact) My yard was pretty nice too before they cut it. They told me that they will re-sod the yard, but I’ve got a problem with the new slope (towards the back of the picture). It’s going to be a problem mowing it now and not scalping the yard with the mower because of the drop off.

    It looks like they’re just going to leave it and re-sod it as it is. I hate it when someone doesn’t do a job correctly. Worst case scenario, I can pull up the sod after they lay it down and I can add some dirt myself. But, I kind of have a problem with them just cutting into my yard like that anyway. Any ideas or suggestions?

    Yard.JPG
     
  2. mostwanted

    mostwanted 1/2 ton status

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    Do you own the property or rent?
     
  3. chevyfumes

    chevyfumes Court jester

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    Watch for the muzzleflash!
    Start bitchen and don't stop til you get your sh!t put back exactly the way you want it...
     
  4. gotmud?

    gotmud? 1/2 ton status

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    Can I get a Amen!
     
  5. GotLabs

    GotLabs 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    Check your survey and make sure it doesnt have easements outlined. Also, do you have a homeowners association? Bring it up to the president.
    Are there any covenants in your neighborhood that state this is acceptable? If you dont know, they are in the county tax office.
    Are the roadways/drainage maintained by local government? If it is you could be liable for damage to his house if the water backs up, if he can prove that you changed the drain field to accomodate your "pretty yard". The easement is the biggest thing to overcome, if its in the contract then you dont have a case.

    Im sure it varies state by state, most of the time some big head has the legalities in black and white, bonafide, notarized and legalize.
     
  6. ARAMP1

    ARAMP1 Aviator Extraordinaire

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    I own it. And, since I do own it, I've been pretty good at taking care of the yard. (as opposed to before when I rented, I'd just mow it as low as I could so I wouldn't have to mow it as often)

    No easements either. And, since the neighborhood is so new, the homeowners association hasn't stood up yet.
     
  7. 81K5GUY

    81K5GUY 1/2 ton status

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    damn those houses are close together,like stated above if you are buying make em get it right .Sometimes you will have to be an ass to get contractors to do the right thing.
     
  8. 3 on the tree

    3 on the tree 1/2 ton status

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    WHO told the builder he could alter your yard? Sounds to me like you have the contractor by the short and curlies. Get hold of city hall and tell them what's going on.
     
  9. GotLabs

    GotLabs 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    Check the local government agency (roads and drainage), sometimes they have say so over drain tiles and such. If the neighborhood has not been turned over to the local government then I would be bitchin!
     
  10. ARAMP1

    ARAMP1 Aviator Extraordinaire

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    Thanks for all the info GotLabs. I doubt it has been because out of 22 houses/lots in my subdivision, there are only 12 or 13 done. But, I'll check tomorrow. We're outside of city limits too, so I guess it would be the county.
     
  11. gjk5

    gjk5 3/4 ton status

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    Alright, start out with a copy of the survey (you should have one in your closing pkg) and then go to the contractor and tell them that the change they made was on your property line and you don't like it. My personal suggestion would be to make these morons put in a french drain like they should have to begin with, this is where they dig the same trench, put in a pipe with lots of holes, backfill with gravel, cover with dirt and then resod your lawn at the same grade it started at.
     
  12. ARAMP1

    ARAMP1 Aviator Extraordinaire

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    Yeah, I was wondering why they didn't do that in the first place. There was a light rain today and their back yard is full of water still, so what they did is apparently not working. I'd hate to see it with a heavy rain.
     
  13. Can Can

    Can Can Pusher Man Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Gotlabs brings up a valid point. Generally, the developer is responsible for a new subdivision for a certain period of time before it get passed off to the city, town, county, etc... While in the developer's "possession", certain regulations that are normally the responsibility of the local civic government are handled by the developer. I would say this situation applies to you, seeing that your subdivision is only half complete.

    Try stopping by the site office or show home and discussing your concerns with the site foreman or supervisor. If you act concerned without being a dick, I think you'll be surprised how fast things get rectified.
     
  14. Corey 78K5

    Corey 78K5 1 ton status

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    Seems to me like it would be a simple fix. I would just tell those morons to go ahead and trench it down about 2' and make it 18-24" wide and slope it down to the street. Line the trench with felt liner then toss in an 8" diameter perforated pipe with about a foot of inch and half crush and run on top of that. Then toss on the top soil and sod and call it good. That will take care of the puddles and keep it looking nice as well.......
     
  15. BulldogK5

    BulldogK5 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    The developer would probably want to know that some of the builders he is letting build there are "doing as they wish". The local gov't will not take over usually until at least 80% of the development is complete.

    If you do alter the drainage flows yourself and the new owner can prove it then you will be liable for any damages.

    Whoever installed the swale needs to be sure that it is graded properly on both sides. You need a minimum 2% slope away from the house to prevent water intrusion. Also, the contractor may be taken to small claims court for trespassing and destroying personal property.

    Another fix would be a retaining wall along the lot line to maintain the ease of maintenance you had before. The best solution would be a french drain with catch basins at appropriate intervals.

    Good luck.
     
  16. broke73

    broke73 1/2 ton status

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    If it was my property and some builder dug a trench through it there'd be hell to pay. I would call the builder and tell him to fill it in and fix the lawn. He has no right to be on your property. It's not your problem that they didn't grade right and the lot next to you floods. They need to put the drain in the lot that floods. If he won't fill it in I'd rent a bob cat and do it myself and tell him if he comes back on the property the police will be involved.
     

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