Nuisance Neighbour

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M
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We own a property which I let to a very reliable tenant. We are responsible for the fence at the bottom of the garden which backs onto another property, the owner of which also lets out his property.

Our tenant has over a period of time noticed that some of our fence posts have been pulled out and that panels have been broken and pushed into our garden. He recently spoke to a next door neighbour who advised that he had actually seen the owner of the house which backs onto the fence pulling out our posts and pushing the panels into our garden. Our tenant then spoke with the owner at the back who admitted that he had pulled out the posts! His motive seems to be to get a brand new fence which looks nicer as he is letting out this property and matches the fence he has recently replaced on the other side of his garden.

We consider this to be an act of vandalism (criminal damage) and have approached the owner to pay for the replacement of the fence (it was bleached by the sun but would have lasted for quite a while longer had he not vandalised it and had it been painted on his side). Our tenants have been very patient despite the nuisance caused to them Ė two of the panels are now so broken (which had already been replaced not that long ago) that there is now a two panel gap in the fence. From time to time we expect a few problems with our tenants, but not other neighbouring Landlords!

We wondered if you could give any advice as to the best and quickest way to tackle this? We have written to him (and also via his managing agents) Recorded Delivery enclosing two competitive quotes to replace the fence and asking for payment within 7 days, otherwise we will consider commencing proceedings via the Small Claims Court. Is there anything else we can/should do which would help bring this matter to a swift and satisfactory conclusion? In the meantime we are going to replace the fence as we donít wish our tenants to be inconvenienced and it poses a security risk having the gap in the fence once the other house at the back has been re-let. Would his Landlordís insurance cover this cost (third party liability cover)? Should we be asking our insurers to deal with it perhaps? Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
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04/06/2013 10:35

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