Being a homeowner is often the answer to a lifelong dream. However, there are many factors that someone who is renting will not have to deal with. Ownership of a home means freedom to make choices, but it also means an extra level of responsibility. That responsibility is not to yourself and your family, but actually to your neighbors. They own the property directly adjacent to you, and they have rights that you have to consider as well. When you want to build a fence on your property, there is a proper way to handle it, concerning your neighbors.

In general, homeowners should maintain a good reputation with their neighbors. If you have always been the type of neighbor that has been an asset to the community, then neighbors will be more likely to cooperate. Neighbors that have very little consideration for their surroundings, like neighbors who don’t cut their grass, or have loud parties at night, etc., will find it harder when finally seeking the help of others. The initial contact may even be about how bad a neighbor you are instead.

Which leads to communicating effectively. You should be able to avoid conflict if you do not delay speaking with them regarding the fence installation. Often times, it’s not just that they have not been asked about it, but that they’ve been asked way too late. At a certain point they may feel like you have decided already and it doesn’t matter what they say. And even if you give yourself leeway, and they don’t agree, there’s still time enough to renegotiate or for them to reconsider.

Any negotiation should begin with where the neighbors are in agreement then begin to work on the points of contention. If you can first get them to understand your needs, then you can let them share their thoughts on the other decisions like the type of material. This will keep them from feeling like they’re being railroaded into pleasing you. The ultimate goal would be to allow them to see how the fence would be beneficial for them too.