36 answers

Neighbors Trespassing-- Kids & Adults All the Time!

We've lived in our house for 11 years and have never had a problem with neighbors until now. Across from our yard, down a hill, across a street, down another hill, and across a field is a low income housing unit. Recently children and adults alike have been crossing over to our properties, whether we're home or not, to ustilize our property as they see fit. Playing on our swingsets, climbing on my car, drawing on my garage with chalk, throwing rocks at my dog, picking my flowers, etc., etc. I am positive the parents can read the private property/no trespassing signs, and as the children are between ages 6-10 they should be able to (I hope). I have spoken on several occasions to the children (ours & theirs) that no one can play in our yard without our permission and especially if we're not home. I don't even know who the parents are as they are always MIA! Our property rules seem to be disregarded by all. My 92 year neighbor found two children and their mother playing on our swing set while we were at work, she kindly told them that they could not play here, to which the mother replied, "we don't have a swingset, so we'll be playing here". Seriously? I don't even know this woman or her children. Did I mention that it would be easier to walk to on of the two neighborhood parks than to our house?

Two days ago, three of them (8 year olds) were yelling nasty names to my just five year old across the lawn, whom they've never even met; then yesterday they come over and want to play on my swings. I don't want to be mean, but I also don't want the liability. I want to set limits, but I want my children to be able to play with them on occasion. I feel like my sanctuary has been invaded and our rules are being totally disrespected.

Fences, signs, words...no options left other than to sell out & move! Suggestions?

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

This may seem like overkill, but if someone were on my property without permission, I would call the police, each and every time. That is just outrageous!

8 moms found this helpful

Get a scary guard dog. Female dog of certain breeds, for instance rottweilers and dobermans, can be loving family pets, but very territorial when someone they don't know is coming around their family's space.

Hell, my labrador is one scary dog when someone he doesn't know comes around (who would have thought with a labrador? Mind you, he's like a labrador on steroids).

I also agree with calling the police.

6 moms found this helpful

I had this happen a long time ago. I looked out back and a women and her children were in my yard on my swing set. I went out and told her to leave and use the public park. What a nerve to just go into someones yard. I put up a fence and I also got a big dog!!! works like a charm! Put up signs too!

Updated

I had this happen a long time ago. I looked out back and a women and her children were in my yard on my swing set. I went out and told her to leave and use the public park. What a nerve to just go into someones yard. I put up a fence and I also got a big dog!!! works like a charm! Put up signs too!

2 moms found this helpful

More Answers

This may seem like overkill, but if someone were on my property without permission, I would call the police, each and every time. That is just outrageous!

8 moms found this helpful

Do you have a lock on your fence/ Gate entrances?

Does your neighborhood have a security officer?

Have you spoken with the Police that patrol your neighborhood?

These seem to be your only other options.

This is the sign I would post on each end of the fence.. And I really would report the trespassers..

http://www.discountpropertysupplies.com/private-property-...

6 moms found this helpful

Get a scary guard dog. Female dog of certain breeds, for instance rottweilers and dobermans, can be loving family pets, but very territorial when someone they don't know is coming around their family's space.

Hell, my labrador is one scary dog when someone he doesn't know comes around (who would have thought with a labrador? Mind you, he's like a labrador on steroids).

I also agree with calling the police.

6 moms found this helpful

Start calling the police each and every time they come on your property. If you don't want them there then by all means take all the steps to make sure they understand you are enforcing your boundaries.

5 moms found this helpful

If you decide to call the police, DO NOT call 911. It's not an emergency! Use the non-emergency line.

Some police departments will get involved in neighborhood disputes and I think this qualifies. I suggest you call the precinct and ask to speak to the officer/supervisor assigned to your area. Ask what you can do. They might be able to send an officer out to talk with the people in the low income complex.

Also, go to the complex building and speak with someone in charge of the building. Again, ask what they suggest and what they can do.

Sounds like you have a fence. I"d lock the gate.

Later: Definitely use the non-emergency line unless the police tell you otherwise. In our jurisdiction, if you called 911 for this problem, you would be told to call the non-emergency line. The 911call takers won't take down your information unless there are open 911 lines. It is not true that they have to send the police if you call 911. And calling 911 can prevent a life threatening call from going thru. The dispatch center has a limited number of lines available for 911 calls.

I have been a call center supervisor and know this from that experience.

5 moms found this helpful

You describe these children as yelling nasty names...yet you want to reserve your children's right to "play with them on occasion." REALLY?

I want to first say that we dealt with this EXACT same issue (and we ARE low income, so it doesn't really come into play.)

First, if I found strangers on my lawn, I'd tell them they couldn't be there and ask them to leave. If they didn't, I'd call the police. If they continued to come back, I would call the police. (Have I? YES I HAVE. It's my house, and I have a right to a safe yard.)

Playing on your swings may be innocent, but as you said, a liability. Don't allow it. But climbing on your car and drawing on your buildings? That's flat out vandalism? Again, I'd call the cops. (Have !? YES I HAVE. They are my hard-worked-for things and no one has the right but me to destroy them.)

We were honestly set to move until we just cracked the whip with essentially every child in the neighborhood. We told all the parents we didn't want them in our yard unless we were home and IN the yard because we didn't want anyone to get hurt. For the children who were continually unsupervised and behaving badly...yes, I eventually called the police.

How's the yard now? Wonderful and private. :)

5 moms found this helpful

Notify the police, your HOA(if there is one) and the property mgmt down the hill. Post 'NO TRESPASSING' sign where visible. These signs are legal and binding and could result in an arrest if violated. But first notify all parties of your intent to post these signs and the results in disregarding the signs.
No trespassing signs do hold their weight in the legal system.
Sometimes you have to be ugly, sometimes people don't get it. Protect what is yours first and foremost.

4 moms found this helpful

Can you fence your property? If yes, maybe that would be a solution? If not, I'd probably call the local police and ask for advice. Obviously you're not looking to get anyone arrested, but you'd like people to stay off of your property when they're not invited. Be really careful if you don't do anything - your uninvited guests fall into the "known trespasser" category since you know they're coming over when you're not home. And that leaves you open to liability claims if someone gets hurt on your property. It would really stink to be sued because someone's child falls off of a swing, or whatever.

4 moms found this helpful

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