Flat Chat Forum Another day in paradise Current Page

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  • #54823

    I live in a Strata complex of 4 townhouses.  A neighbour who has no relationship with any of the Lot owners, refused to remove  a  fig tree that had grown from bird poo when a new fence was installed between our Lot and his. At the time the fencer told him the tree was a weed and never planted in gardens…… to no avail. The tree was touching the fence so our fence warranty was negated.
    Since then the tree which is  approximately 1.3metres from my property has grown to extend over the height or our two storey house. To date the sewer has blocked on 3 occasions ( the tree is a metre from the line) but a camera shows no roots have entered the pipe yet.
    My kitchen window on the second storey was totally blocked by the tree…….two years of writing to Strata. and the owner cut  one branch, so some light comes in and the branch didn’t bang the window.

    To date the cut branch has grown, we have no ventilation and we have a gas cooker, the branches tap the fly screens in the wind, branches touch the house wall and we can only see outside by a small  section on one side. We need the light on all day.
    I have spoken to the neighbour and  he said he would  “look” at the problem. 9 months later nothing has changed except the tree gets denser and bigger.
    Am I entitled to cut any of it? Could I cut what is in front of my window as this is over 3 metres from ground level?  Will council be able to help or is it mediation and NCAT.

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  • #54895

    If there was no strata involved, then I think it’s simple (and by extrapolation, it is still simple in your case).

    The neighbour is not prevented from planting or growing whatever they like on their side of the fence, so you can’t force them to remove the tree, nor even to prune the tree (unless it could be “proven” to be dangerous due to disease/falling over and damaging/injuring).

    However, the good news is that you are not prevented from pruning anything on (or above, or below, up to certain limits) your property. So, you could “draw” a vertical line at the fence, and prune along that line (both above and below if roots are an issue). If this was me, I’d be hopeful to kill the plant by doing this, without doing anything more than is permitted. I’m not sure that poisoning the plant would be allowed….

    Since this is actually common property and not your personal property, then the OC owns it, and is responsible for the care/maintenance. Thus I would be requesting the OC to take the above steps as part of its normal “gardening” responsibility, ie, trim/prune the tree.


    PS, I have no idea what the issue is with your sewer, if there are no tree roots impacting the sewer, then I don’t see how the tree has any relation to the blocked sewer, I assume you have a different independant issue with the sewer and are simply trying to attach those problems to this tree. Try to keep some perspective, focus on the issue at hand and it’s solution, difficult, but it will help you appear reasonable.

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Flat Chat Forum Another day in paradise Current Page