I Want My Fence Built…
If your situation is that you have paid for a fence in your housing contract and now want it built then read on.
Who is responsible for getting the new fence up?
Your Builder has made arrangements with TFR Construction to fence your new property.
TFR Construction waits for your house to be finished and for the Builder to contact us and authorize us to go in and fence the property.
Not everyone knows it but the fencing of properties is an area covered by the law (Fences Act 1968). The law involves: your Builder, TFR Construction and all your new neighbours (usually 3 neighbours). With so many people involved the speed of the job is limited by the speed of co-operation of ALL those parties; it is our experience that the slowest parties are most often your new neighbours. TFR Construction has long experience with such matters and can offer our help.
Please take a few minutes to read and understand the law and process involved in fencing your property; if you do it will probably help you get moved in to you new home faster.
What your neighbours have to do first:
Every new standard fence built in Melbourne must be paid for half by your builder and half by the neighbours. It is the law that your neighbours must pay half the cost however this often comes as a surprise to them and they often take time to come to terms with the fact.
When your builder asks us to start fencing TFR Construction must first comply with the law and send out a Fencing Notice to each of your neighbours informing them of the intention to build a fence on each boundary and telling them the amount of money that they MUST contribute to the job (i.e. half the cost of a Standard Fence). Your new neighbours must agree to the work and cost by filling out and returning the Fencing Notice to TFR Construction. By law the notice should be sent back to TFR Construction within 28 days however sometimes this is not done. If this is the case TFR Construction is often happy to help contact the neighbours and try to get matters moving however your Builder and you can often also help by appealing to the better nature of your neighbour -after all it is in your neighbours’ best interests to get off to a good start with you.
If your neighbours’ refuse to comply then the law allows your builder to take them to Court and have a Magistrate issue a Fencing Order against them but this takes time.
As you can see getting your new fences is not just as simple as building them, we all have to follow the law. However a little good will and neighbourly understanding can greatly speed matters up. TFR Construction always encourages your new neighbours to understand their obligations.
What if you can’t wait any longer for your neighbours?
If you have a “problem neighbour” and simply must move into your new home please read the following:
At the moment the costs and hassles associated in getting your fencing completed are probably the responsibility of your Builder (as per your contract). However you may be eager to take possession and move into your new home; what are your options?
Option 1: Pay all the fencing cost yourself.
As your Builder is still waiting for your neighbour to agree to pay for half the fence one option is to pay your builder your neighbour’s share of the fence. The upside of this option is that you will be able to move in faster. The downside is that YOU then have to try and recover half the costs from your problem neighbour and this may be difficult and lengthy.
Option 2: Agree with your Builder to take on the fencing responsibility yourself.
Another similar option may be to agree to make your final payment to your builder less the cost of your share of the uncompleted fence. This allows you to take possession and move in but the downside is that YOU have to take on the difficulty of pursing the fencing costs from your problem neighbour. TFR Construction can help give some advice here but can not e.g. help you take the matter to court.