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Thursday, February 25, 2021

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Subject: Question about fence of a corner lot
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02/22/2021 4:55 PM  
My house is a corner lot. I have a street on the side as well as in front of the house. From the street, there is a 2 ft grass patch, and a 5 foot sidewalk, which means that my lawn starts 7 feet from the street. When we did a survey of the house, we realized that the sidewalk and the grass patch are within property lines. (See illustration, orange line indicates property lines)

The HOA document for fence specification specifies, "If the fence is adjacent to an alley, street or road, the fence must be at least 2 feet away from such alley, street or road."

My question is: How close to the sidewalk, on my lawn, can I install the fence? Does the "2 ft away" specification apply to the sidewalk or just the street?

Thank you.

Attachment: 122255250271.pdf



02/22/2021 5:56 PM  
Did you ask the board? If so, what was the response? When you submit your exterior change request (usually required for things like fences) it may help to bring a diagram of what you want to do (don't forget measurements) and your survey.


02/22/2021 6:16 PM  
Well, you wouldn't want to fence in the sidewalk as that would cause issues.

I would put the fence 2 feet in from the sidewalk as it would cause the least issues for me.

Once you apply for approval of the fence from the Association, they will let you know if it's in the wrong place.


02/22/2021 8:06 PM  
From info provided, I think you could install a fence right along the edge of the sidewalk on your house-side of the sidewalk. I've seen that done before in similar situations and I think it is somewhat typical. I assume that's perhaps what you may want to do in order to maximize your fenced-in yard space.

Installing any closer to the street than that just doesn't make sense. You can't install on top of the sidewalk, and you can't install on the street-side of the sidewalk, which results in you fencing in the sidewalk.

That said, I have seen fences right along the sidewalk get damaged by kids riding bikes/scooters/skateboards on the sidewalk or other possible damage by people "recreating" on the sidewalk in close proximity to your fence . . . so you may want to consider backing off the sidewalk a bit too.

But I also suggest seeing what else already exists in your neighborhood as that will have set a precedent as to what is likely allowed (by whoever is interpreting your design standards and approving architectural requests) and also in keeping with other similar improvements already existing in the neighborhood.


02/23/2021 7:09 AM  
Thank you for all the responses. Yes, obviously we do not want to put up a fence on the sidewalk, or enclose the sidewalk inside the fence :-)
I wanted to find out if the "2 ft away" wording extended to include the sidewalk or only to the "street, alley or road".



02/23/2021 8:11 AM  
You might want to find out if there are any easements on your property that would affect putting in a fence. In my last association, each lot had a 5 foot utility and sidewalk easement along the front property line. If you had a professional survey done, hopefully that would show any easements, if you have the plat for the development, that should show them too.

Escaped former treasurer and director of a self managed association.
(South Carolina)


02/23/2021 9:09 AM  

I am surprised the association allows fences in the front of the house. Were it me, I would place the fence 2 feet in from the sidewalk as a sign of being a good neighbor.


02/23/2021 9:36 AM  
I think the wording is very clear and the fence has to be at least 2' from the street. It does not need to be any distance from the sidewalk.

Obviously, the sidewalk being on your property brings up different issues but you seem to have already realized that.
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Forums > Homeowner Association > HOA Discussions > Question about fence of a corner lot

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