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Not So White Picket Fence

July 26, 2008

So I moved to Texas and less than a year later, I bought a house.  It was a foreclosed home that the owners before had obviously not taken care of…sorry I ended a sentence in a preposition (my bad.  I recently learned through the blog Things White People Love that we white people love good grammar and that wasn’t).  But the house had potential.  So after lots of work with tiling, painting, digging, removing, throwing away, etc. (with lots of help from loved ones) the house is actually coming along.

Now on to the point of this story.  We have a backyard.  Our dog likes our backyard.  He poops there every day…sometimes multiple times a day.  Anyway, because the former owners bought what I call the “crap package” when the home was built, the fence is just as ghetto as the rest of the house was (<— see!  Not a preposition!).  Fortunately, when there are storms they blow right up against the back fence and the back of our house…wait…unfortunately…yeah.  So we had some really bad storms last year.  One storm took out 2 panels of the 6 panel back fence.  Then a couple weeks after finally getting it fixed, the other 4 panels came tumbling down.  Well, Humpty Dumpty actually did get put together again with the help of some friends.
It’s now July of ’08 and enter my next door neighbor.  He’s a fun guy.  We have lived here almost 2 years now and between my wife and I, we have probably talked to the guy about 4 times total…including one time he came over pissed because Jack pooped in his yard!  OH NO!  Anyway, we have a panel on the fence that we share that has broken in half all the way down.  So he has gotten some quotes to completely redo his entire fence.  Needless to say that is gonna run him (with a cheap quote) about $4k.  Dang.  So he came over and asked me if I would be willing to split the cost of our shared side of the fence, which is looking to cost a little shy of $1k.  I told him I wasn’t sure and would have to think about it.  
Now to be completely honest with you, I don’t have $500 just lying around waiting for the fence to fall apart.  I know.  I’m terrible with money!  How could I not have been saving for something like that!  So I ask you.  Am I duty bound as a neighbor to fork up $500 to help this guy fix that side of the fence or am I obligated to offer to help the guy fix the fence to how it was before?  I fear that once this guy replaces his entire fence, including our shared side, it will make our fence look like complete trash.  So I have a hard time hopping on board to pay $500 to make my yard look worse!  So, what do you think?  All you wise sages out there.  What should be my final decision here?  
4 Comments leave one →
  1. Jason Waymire permalink
    July 26, 2008 3:18 PM

    Good luck with that…when the hail storms hit our area my neighbor’s trampoline broke some of my fence…did they offer to pay me anything…no..good times as well.

  2. Jason Waymire permalink
    July 26, 2008 3:24 PM

    P.S. they were awesome…hard to beat good old Scotland

  3. D. James permalink
    July 26, 2008 10:26 PM

    Legally, I don’t think so, and he has to put it on his property. Morally….I guess I would feel the obligation. Maybe sell the dog???

  4. August 29, 2008 10:04 AM

    You should put up your own fence on your property. Wouldn’t have to be too expensive. You can put up fence yourself relatively easily.

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