Property disputes – FAQs

How do I know where the boundary is and who owns the boundary?
A plan of your property within your title deeds may show the position of the boundary and who owns it. However, usually they do not and the position on the ground may have changed since the title deeds were written. You may therefore find yourself in dispute with your neighbour over the boundary.

Other information such as photographic evidence or information from the previous owner of the property may help to determine the position and ownership of the boundary. More often than not however it is necessary to instruct a surveyor to consider the paperwork and features on the ground in order to determine the boundary. You can instruct a surveyor solely or jointly between the neighbours.

I need access to my neighbours land to carry out repairs to my property, what can I do?
You will need to check your title deeds to see if there is any specific right granted to access your neighbour’s property. If there is no right within your deeds then you may be able to apply to the Court for access under the Access to Neighbouring Land Act. If you are seeking to take such action we would recommend you seek legal assistance to draft the Court Application.
What can I do about noisy neighbours?
Firstly, you should try speaking to your neighbours about the matter. It is possible they do not realise they are disturbing you. If you cannot resolve the problem amicably with your neighbour or the landlord, if your neighbours are tenants, then you can initially contact the Environmental Health Dept of your local council. They will investigate the matter and consider whether they can take any action against your neighbour.

You can also seek legal assistance from a solicitor, who will consider whether you can bring a legal claim in nuisance against your neighbour.

I want to build an extension up to the boundary line, do I have to inform my neighbour?
If you are carrying out any such work near the boundary then you need to follow procedures under the Part Wall etc Act 1996. If you fail to carry out the procedures within this Act then your neighbour may be able to bring legal action against you.
My neighbour’s trees overhang onto my property, what can I do?
It is best to discuss the matter with your neighbour and request that they cut back the tree. However, if your neighbour fails to take any action it is possible for you to cut back the branches of the trees to the boundary line, however you must ensure the following when taking such steps;

  • That such action will not harm/kill the tree
  • That the tree is not subject to a preservation order
  • Know where the boundary is
  • Return any branches removed to the neighbour