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Subject: HOA Fence Approval Question!
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MilesS
(Indiana)

Posts:6


06/30/2019 9:38 AM  
I am on a pond property. The back of my home overlooks a retention pond (Very small and not that pleasing looking. I chose this lot because I liked the idea of not having any direct neighbors building behind me.

I went though the HOA approval process for a privacy fence. I gave details on my fence as follows: "180 foot liner fence, 5ft fencing with one foot dog ear deconstruction on the side sloping down on the last 5 foot of fence to connect to the 4 foot section in the back with dog ears to match the whole fence.
The fence will come up 5 foot on the side of my home and extend out 8 foot on the right and 6 foot on the left side. The fence is not prefabricated sections. It's all wooden individual dog eared pickets that are 5 foot with a 1 foot dog ear decoration on top (6 foot in total height). They will than cut the pickets down to 4 foot in total height for the back sloping it down on the sides to make it more ascetically pleasing."

I also made sure that my fence was 20 foot distance from the end of my property line in the back and more than 25 foot away from the pond.

I included all the brochures on how the fence would look and even a map I drew with the fence location.

I was approved for the fence! I have the signed approval for my records!


The issue now is my neighbors. During construction of my fence they called the HOA on me (While I am out of town for work). An HOA official come out and halted construction for two hours. My wife was upset calling me and I talked to the HOA official and told them we had approval. My neighbors complained I was obstructing their view of the retention pond.
The HOA official was nice, but you can understand how irritated I was being we had approval. It took a few hours for my wife to find the letter in my saved E-mail box (I printed it out now). He said he didn't see an issue nor how I was obstructing their view of the pond. He allowed for construction to continue after he saw the letter.

Now I was thinking I am in the right on everything I had done. I went back to re-read the HOA bylaws. Turns out, I can see the issue. I thought the fence couldn't extend 10 feet past the back of my home (I only went 5 foot past the back). While I am correct, it also says on a pond lot the 6 foot section of the fence can't go further than 10 past the back of my home where it has to be 4 foot in height after.

My question is. Being I found out I was wrong, does it matter? I got approval and the HOA Official even came out and approved the project after the neighbors complained. While I see my mistake and even reached out to the fence contractor to see how much it would cost to fix that mistake, I don't have the money right now to fix it. I want to be a good neighbor, but when I tried to talk to my neighbor they really
cheesed me! They told me "We paid a premium for this lot ($750 extra, I paid it as well) and I should be able to see the lake without obstruction. We were told we couldn't have a privacy fence". I also had the door slammed in my face! I am upset by this more than I should be, being I don't say anything about their dogs not being on leashes and peeing in my front lawn. Their German Shepard always came into my back yard while my kids would be out playing (main reason I built the fence). They would always walk across my yard to get somewhere and I didn't say a word!

Being the HOA board approved my fence, do I have anything to worry about? I attached the bylaw for you all to see! I also attached the drawing I sent in showing the 6ft sides and how far they would extend.

Thanks for your advice.


MilesS
(Indiana)

Posts:6


06/30/2019 9:47 AM  
I can't attach the files, they are to big apparently.



It states

Pond Lots: Lots which are adjacent to or which abut a lake or detention pond are subject to the following restrictions:
(A) Fencing shalt not exceed four (4) feet in height; provided that in the discretion of the committee, the portion of such fence closest to the rear side of the residence may be the five (5) feet in height, and have a decorative cap (Not to exceed six (6) feet aggregate); provided further that such higher section shall not extend more than ten (10) feet from the rear corner(s) of the residence, subject to (B), below. In exercising its descretion under this provision, the committee shall take into account the affect such proposed fence would have on the use and enjoyment of the lake or pond areas by other owners.

(B) Fencing shall not be constructed within twenty-five (25) feet of the shoreline of any lake or detention pond.


I am good on the "B".
MilesS
(Indiana)

Posts:6


06/30/2019 9:58 AM  
I need to point out that there is other people that have a fence behind their house that does not slope down at all. Their fence is 6 foot all the way around. I put a 4 foot section in the back of my fence so I can still see the pond as I though that was what the bylaws were for.
They say they were grandfathered in for their style of fence. I thought it was an actual law that you need to be able to see the pond for safety reason and not just for HOA reasons.

But, I am not the only one with a privacy fence on the pond lot.
MilesS
(Indiana)

Posts:6


06/30/2019 10:08 AM  
Posted By RoyalP on 06/30/2019 9:58 AM
you are in violation

(unless the right to do so is specifically granted by the covenant) neither the bod nor the acc may 'waive' a restriction

however

the hoa is 'probably' on the hook for your cost(s) to become compliant






oopsie





So what I should do is just leave it be and if they come after me in the future produce the signed approval and tell them to fix it?
MilesS
(Indiana)

Posts:6


06/30/2019 10:09 AM  
I did call the managing firm for the HOA and they told me that being I got approval that even if it was wrong I would end up being an exception to the rules and there is nothing they could do to me.
MilesS
(Indiana)

Posts:6


06/30/2019 2:56 PM  
As much as I would like to be a good neighbor that ship has long since left the port yard for me.

I realized the mistake and proactively tried to say sorry. They slammed the door in my face and basically were very hostel for no reason.

Had we had a rational discussion without anger, I would explain I don't have the money right now to correct the issue as I spent it all for the fence.
I would say we will correct the issue, but give me a few months to save up. That is what I wanted to do, but as soon as I approached them to apologize it
became hostel.

So, I will do nothing and wait. If the HOA want's to have it corrected, I won't stop them! I just won't pay for it.

I did my due diligence. I provided a lot of information and pictures and three drawings to show them my design and how far back the fence would go at the 6 foot mark.
The HOA board member himself said he didn't see an issue with the fence when he came out.

I on my own went back to read to see if I had messed up and found out that I did.

So call me a bad neighbor, but at least I tried.
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:8827


06/30/2019 4:36 PM  
Miles

You did as asked and they granted approval even if outside the guidelines, which they have the authority to approve.

Let it die.
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