Lazy neighbor
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    wentonbrown's Avatar
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    Lazy neighbor

    Been trying to catch my neighbor who is avoiding us. I jumped in his a$$ for shooting his pistol in his back yard. He is surrounded by houses on 3 sides and the main road in front. No place for him to shoot safely!

    Anyway, I have offered several times now to help him with his trees but he has to cut them up. I told him months ago that when I am able to have it ready and when I can get on Betsy I will move them. He hasnt done it. He sits home all day cuz he watches their daughter and wife works. She teaches special needs children. I was up and down the drive many times this weekend moving trees and branches on mine and part of the mess he has going on and you would think he would have come out and help me get his cleaned up but no. I saw him peeking out the window, we knew he was home. So I bailed him out now several times when he couldnt get out this winter, pushed what trees I could move and never said a word about it. Even when he didnt say thanks. Not the reason I do it.

    The only thing that gets under my skin is I told him 2 times now that hey man, dont know if you have noticed but the bear has carried your trash in to the woods, and he always says thanks I havent but will check it out. Do you think he picked that up either? No. So as I drive up and down our drive or am working at the part of the lawn I can see it. So I want to stop and ask him why he cant take 2 mins and pick it up so I dont have to look at it or he gets the bear trained to come to his house to get the garbage cuz he cant seem to keep it in the garage like everyone else around him. We have some really big bears here. Dont need them getting into the trash next door and making a mess that can be avoided.

    So am I wrong for saying something, because I have to look at his trash laying in the woods everyday, cuz at 6'5 and 250 he is the laziest guy I know? Except when it comes to surfing the internet all day. He likes to sit on his porch in shorts no shirt and stay there all day. My other neighbor cant stand it. My other neighbor wont have anything to do with him. Wouldn't you think that you would want to stay on your neighbor's good side you would at least pick the trash up, I know he can see it cuz its not that far from his trash can he leaves by the house.

    He told me when he moved in he was going to make his house really nice and plant all these flowers and plant some trees the previous owner had to cut down to put in a new septic as part of the agreement.. Good thing they were down because the few that were left snapped off this winter. Which was another thing I moved cause they were laying in the road and shoved out of the way so everyone could get by. At least he said thanks for that and i let him use my driveway til he cut just enough trees to get in and out his own driveway again.

    My other course of action is that I go along where he likes to park his truck and block it off with boulders and no trespassing signs because he is on my property. There is a small driveway that used to connect 2 houses together. It was torn out and the gravel left and when they divided everything and put my drive in I got the biggest piece and it runs right thru part of what he thought was his. Til I painted it all out and we walked the line. For all the research he said he did he didnt do a good job. Well I told him he can still use it for now. So again I am doing him a favor by letting him keep parking there. It really shrinks his drive down if i do that. At this point I dont care.

    So has anyone else had to deal with someone like this? What did you do? I know they didnt expect living in the woods to be quite like this but they have been here a year now and they researched...

    Have a great day!
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    grnspot110's Avatar
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    Had a little episode Sunday, neighbors next door both work at a pork processing plant 30 miles away. No way they can afford the property they have! He doesn't do much of anything himself but mow the yard. Sunday afternoon, he had somebody "trimming" trees for him, (hacking would be more accurate). Say the guy heading for a big soft Maple in my yard with his saw & ladder. He promptly cut off a 10-12" limb that was hanging over the neighbors yard! I met him when he climbed down & asked if he should have talked to the property owner (me) before cutting it. His eyes got big, said the neighbor told him to cut it. I told him I didn't care about cutting the limb, just that I wasn't talked to about it first! I had thought about cutting it myself when the house was empty, but decided it was too risky for me anymore. The sawyer left shortly afterwards!

    Later, I heard the neighbor on his phone (he talks louder then) & over heard "neighbor" in the conversation. Wife had heard the neighbors wife(?) telling him I was at the tree when the cutting was going on & that "it's not our tree". A little while later my wife saw another man talking to the neighbor & telling him "don't do anymore", we're assuming it was their loan co-signer!
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    Very frustrating and reminds me how fortunate I am to have great neighbors on either side and across the street.

    I would say you've built up an awful lot of good will and would be careful doing anything to degrade those good works. You're being a good neighbor (above and beyond) and have led by example.

    Perhaps instead of focusing your efforts on continuing to help out on his property, maybe now's the time to shift focus and make some landscaping improvements on your property. Perhaps some new conifers that would block the line of sight to his yard, a new landscaping bed where the shared drive is located, and just dress your place up a bit more along the border.

    Perhaps after a season or two or more, he'll come to appreciate the kindness of his neighbor. Who knows, maybe he's just been surfing the internet all day putting together the best plan ever to dress up his place like he told you originially Planning takes the longest you know

    Entitlement is a tough enemy. Best of luck.

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    Good luck

    Fortunately, I've never had a gem like your neighbor right next door. I had one that was worse two doors down and honestly, I thought I was going to end up shooting him because he as a scary drunk. He beat the snot out of his girlfriend and I figured he would try me sooner or later. Fortunately, he got another job and moved before I had to shoot him.

    I think it's a waste of time but I'd try a very direct talk with him about the trash, trees etc. and let him know you want to change your landscaping and will be putting a line barrier down. His reaction will tell you what kind of barrier it needs to be. The talk is more so you know you did everything possible rather than an expectation that he will change his behavior. Keep notes on when you talk with him, what was said and so forth just in case he wants to go to court over the line dispute or blows up and you have to call the cops. You not only want to be in the right but be able to prove you are the good guy. Some pictures of his mess, trees in the way etc. would be worthwhile as well.

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    Sorry wentonbrown, I am the last person to give neighbor advice. We are cursed when it comes to neighbors. We could write book. Unfortunately I notice a lot of nice houses in our area being sold to younger people and the houses soon fall into disrepair or a state of being unkept. I think it is a general lack of pride of ownership. I have a lot to take care of, but I prioritize to get the most done I can in the limited time I have. I am proud of my home and investment and want to keep it looking nice. I know a guy who was obsessed with owning a large acreage property. So they mortgaged themselves to the hilt to buy a place on 80 acres. The house is/was beautiful and the acreage immaculate. The lawn is about 2 acres with about 40 acres of meadow that the previous owner kept mowed/brush hogged regularly. The guy I know has 2 little kids and is helping his parents who recently built a house on the same property. Needless to say the lawn has been mowed only twice so far with the MMM on the highest setting and the meadow only got paths cut last year. There is also a brown tarp wrapped around the chimney due to a leak. He just doesn't have the time to keep it up, but he "owns it". That's good enough for him, but not me. To each his own. Unfortunately in your case, I don't think you'll fix lazy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wentonbrown View Post
    Been trying to catch my neighbor who is avoiding us. I jumped in his a$$ for shooting his pistol in his back yard. He is surrounded by houses on 3 sides and the main road in front. No place for him to shoot safely!

    Anyway, I have offered several times now to help him with his trees but he has to cut them up. I told him months ago that when I am able to have it ready and when I can get on Betsy I will move them. He hasnt done it. He sits home all day cuz he watches their daughter and wife works. She teaches special needs children. I was up and down the drive many times this weekend moving trees and branches on mine and part of the mess he has going on and you would think he would have come out and help me get his cleaned up but no. I saw him peeking out the window, we knew he was home. So I bailed him out now several times when he couldnt get out this winter, pushed what trees I could move and never said a word about it. Even when he didnt say thanks. Not the reason I do it.

    The only thing that gets under my skin is I told him 2 times now that hey man, dont know if you have noticed but the bear has carried your trash in to the woods, and he always says thanks I havent but will check it out. Do you think he picked that up either? No. So as I drive up and down our drive or am working at the part of the lawn I can see it. So I want to stop and ask him why he cant take 2 mins and pick it up so I dont have to look at it or he gets the bear trained to come to his house to get the garbage cuz he cant seem to keep it in the garage like everyone else around him. We have some really big bears here. Dont need them getting into the trash next door and making a mess that can be avoided.

    So am I wrong for saying something, because I have to look at his trash laying in the woods everyday, cuz at 6'5 and 250 he is the laziest guy I know? Except when it comes to surfing the internet all day. He likes to sit on his porch in shorts no shirt and stay there all day. My other neighbor cant stand it. My other neighbor wont have anything to do with him. Wouldn't you think that you would want to stay on your neighbor's good side you would at least pick the trash up, I know he can see it cuz its not that far from his trash can he leaves by the house.

    He told me when he moved in he was going to make his house really nice and plant all these flowers and plant some trees the previous owner had to cut down to put in a new septic as part of the agreement.. Good thing they were down because the few that were left snapped off this winter. Which was another thing I moved cause they were laying in the road and shoved out of the way so everyone could get by. At least he said thanks for that and i let him use my driveway til he cut just enough trees to get in and out his own driveway again.

    My other course of action is that I go along where he likes to park his truck and block it off with boulders and no trespassing signs because he is on my property. There is a small driveway that used to connect 2 houses together. It was torn out and the gravel left and when they divided everything and put my drive in I got the biggest piece and it runs right thru part of what he thought was his. Til I painted it all out and we walked the line. For all the research he said he did he didnt do a good job. Well I told him he can still use it for now. So again I am doing him a favor by letting him keep parking there. It really shrinks his drive down if i do that. At this point I dont care.

    So has anyone else had to deal with someone like this? What did you do? I know they didnt expect living in the woods to be quite like this but they have been here a year now and they researched...

    Have a great day!
    Yes, I have had to deal with a similar neighbor and no matter what you do, it's frustrating.

    Now that you have offered help and extended help by plowing him out numerous times along with other things, perhaps the new approach is to simply ignore. No matter what you do or say, he is likely to be a source of irritation and continue his indifference.

    Generally, someone so lazy and apathetic is likely to also get under his wives skin as well, if he hasn't already. It's probably a matter of time before she throws him out. After all, she has to live with him. How long will she tolerate his inactivity and sitting on the front porch, shirtless, doing nothing? Who knows. Maybe forever, Maybe not long at all. Let those chips fall where they may.

    Few adults appreciate working all day only to come home to find their significant other has once again, rode on their shirt tails and not done what they said they would. I would expect this to come to a head as soon as she is home this summer with him, once school is out. If nothing else, maybe she will motivate him to do SOMETHING, which would an improvement. I doubt she is going to just "let it slide".

    If he breaks the law by firing the weapon, which most likely he is, call the authorities and then let him answer to them. At least he will be on the record that way for his illegal actions. At least the authorities will have a chance to do something about it. It would be awful to have anyone impacted by his negligence and ignorance, and the one most likely to pay the price is his own child. You can call the authorities and then ask them to keep the source of the call anonymous, if needed, to avoid a possible confrontation. The main thing is that he is made to answer to others for his actions, when they are dangerous.

    We had a celebration last week in our neighborhood when our "bad neighbor" put their house on the market. Hopefully, its good riddance soon. It didn't take them long to alienate every single neighbor over one petty matter or another. The last 10 years, they have lived in their house, virtually a lone island surrounded by other neighbors who all get along and help one another and communicate. But it was their doing and their choice. Now, hopefully very soon, they are moving along.

    I help every other neighbor with their snow removal, but not these people. They can shovel for all I care. I don't understand why they would want to be the source of angst between all neighbors, but they have and they are, entirely by their own doing. Frankly, I am a nice guy (juss axe me....) but if my bad neighbor was on fire in the middle of the street, I wouldn't urinate on him to extinguish it, nor would I likely call 911. I would probably photograph it so we can charge his estate the costs to repair the road from the fire damage and to scrape his remains off the pavement. Sometimes, people can push you this far but you have to resist the temptation. You reach a point where the bad neighbor just needs to deal with the mess they put themselves in.

    I know it's far easier said, than done, but I would simply ignore the guy. Be kind to his child and reach out to her just as you would any child who is deserving of positive adult influence, as she certainly is likely not getting a role model out of her father. When the opportunity arises, do what you can to brighten her day. That part is even more sad as it sounds like he is nothing but "present" and likely not much more.

    You didn't mention the age of their little girl he watches is, but it's important that she sees positive, productive, helpful male role models, like you. While it may not be her father that you are helping, helping others shows her that we all need to be considerate of others and there is more to the world than just "us". Also, give her a little bundle of fresh flowers to brighten her day if she is old enough, or help her pick wild flower for her mother. Make sure she understands the difference between picking wild flowers and the neighbors flowers as she might not know the difference. I made that mistake once...

    Befriending the child is good for her and it might just bring him around. On the other hand, it might not change his behavior one bit. Just be careful to not ever put yourself into a position where he can make false allegations of some alleged inappropriate actions or behavior. So keep all of your interactions out in the public eye and with objective adult witnesses if possible. You never know what people might say or claim these days.........It's sad.

    If you or your wife are planting flowers or doing such things and the little girl is around, show her how to do these things. Ask her if she wants to help or watch. Don't let her feel the tension or your dislike for her father and don't let her think she is being avoided or ignored. She has done nothing wrong, but she might think she has if she is "ignored". Even such simple things as watering plants or flowers can make a child feel they are contributing. Plus it's teaching her something productive and that there is more to the world than just "us". It's unlikely she is getting that same positive message from her father. Sounds like he is probably ignoring her when he is focused on the internet, which is far too common and sad these days.

    Clearly, he has issues. What they are, really doesn't matter and you are very unlikely to change them. When he doesn't pick up trash and it attracts the wild life, call the applicable state Game Authority and they will respond and he can deal with them. As anyone with a brain knows, when Bears start to become a "nuisance", often because of the actions or lack of same by ignorant, selfish humans, it's the bear who will pay the price. So, to protect the bear, the authorities have to be the one to advise him to either deal with the trash or they will likely cite him.

    If they order him to do something or to stop doing something and he refuses, then they can likely cite him. Then when he ignores, it becomes a contempt citation. Then appearing before a judge, then maybe spending some time in "adult time out" because he won't do the right thing. But let the authorities deal with him, lest it will grow into a confrontation between the two of you and there is nothing good which will come of it.

    If he is parking on your property, maybe it's time for Betsy to install some boulders in that parking spot, to of course, provide a safe barrier for the rest of the lawn. As long as it's your property, you are free to do as you see appropriate.

    You have made the offer to clean up the down trees, etc. He has refused. If they are lying across your property line, I would cut the downed tree right on the property line and clean up "my half" and leave the rest on his. If he won't help you, help him, he is likely hoping you will simply "handle his" tree clean up for him. If you do, he won't appreciate it or likely even express any gratitude. We have all had those people that we bend over backwards for to help them and not only do they fail to show any gratitude, they come to expect you to handle these matters. And with some people, the more you do, the more they will expect you to do. Time to draw the line.

    Don't say what you are thinking, as it will likely just lead to escalated tensions and it will raise your blood pressure. Sometimes the best approach is to help those who are grateful and who do appreciate it and leave it at that. I would imagine there are several other neighbors who feel the same way you do. Just be careful about making this guy the collective focus of your discussions and frustration among neighbors as its likely to cause the situation to eventually escalate. While you can mention to the other neighbor that you are disappointed that the guy won't take care of his property they way the rest of you do, just be careful about what others may report back to him. Until you know they are squarely in your camp, just proceed carefully as you don't need to divide neighbors into "warring factions"......

    People are funny. It's hard to understand why some do and say what they do and what they don't. Just don't make this a war on this neighbor, but instead, make the other neighbors have a collective interest in the good of the neighborhood. After all, everyone taking care of their property and doing what is best for all is at the very core of a good neighborhood. If the one neighbor won't participate, don't let it stop the rest of you from working together and being happy and good neighbors.

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    coaltrain's Avatar
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    Stories like these is why I have no neighbors and never will.
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    WB, In my 50 years of life when going through cycles of different neighbors I have found there are people who take care of their yards in those that don’t. The ones that do without money do it with a craftsman lawn mower, the ones that have some money spend it on equipment so they can do a better and faster job and then do more.

    My case in point. You served our country and you are paying for that with injuries but you’re still busting your ass to keep your place nice and do improvements. You don’t know any other way. We had two widows down the road that after their husbands died kept her 1 to 2 acre lots looking very nice and when they couldn’t do it anymore they had my boys come down and do it. One had a little a little aluminum two wheel cart and she would go around the yard in her 80s picking up little things and weeding flowerbeds. She liked her yard and she enjoyed it and it kept her active. Both of their places now have younger people in them that want to live in the country but would rather spend their time and money on other things and they will mow parts of their lawn’s with a push mower about three times a year. Nothing looks worse than 8” high grass mowed with a push mower in front of a house when the ditch and flowerbeds are 3 feet tall in weeds.

    Keeping a place nice doesn’t have to cost a lot of money but it takes time. I don’t think you can change what people want to do with their time or what they care about. We can work outside all week end and only see two of our neighbors and yes they have nice looking yards and gardens but probably are also terrible at video games. The others I do help out from time to time if they need something moved with the bobcat or snow moved in the winter and I keep the ditch mowed on each side of us.

    If the driveway between the two houses is gravel I would strongly consider repurposing that gravel to your driveway and putting grass back between and maybe a nice fence.

    Below is the progression we made in lawn carts which is currently at HPX level. When our one neighbor had an auction I ended up picking up the aluminum lawn cart part out of respect and part as future preparation.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2018-05-30 08.51.31.jpg  
    Last edited by Herminator; 05-30-2018 at 08:58 AM. Reason: Yes I know the aluminum lawn cart is galvanized!
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    Zebrafive's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coaltrain View Post
    Stories like these is why I have no neighbors and never will.
    Some of us are not that lucky. It also makes you more of a target for thieves that know there will be no neighbors to see them break in/rob the place
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zebrafive View Post
    Some of us are not that lucky. It also makes you more of a target for thieves that know there will be no neighbors to see them break in/rob the place
    Pretty much unheard of around here.

    I’ll take my chances with the dog and gun rather than be subject to neighbors.
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