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Old 12-26-2012, 04:39 PM   #1
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Would you give a 2'x4'x6' part of your land away to your neighbour?

Ok, so our neighbour is rebuilding his house and wants to build a BBQ right next to the side of his house.
His side of the house faces our retaining wall (cement) where our car port is. So his side door of his house faces a four foot wide pathway (that is his) and is right up against our retaining wall (our wall is 6 feet tall). The total area of our car port is approx 20ft wide and 30 feet long and oddly shaped.

He wants to cut a 2 foot deep by 4 foot wide by 6' tall gap into the cement wall to put in a permanent bbq. This gap wouldn't affect us at all as this is towards the very end of our parking area where no car would be able to park anyway. This 2x4x6' gap wouldn't affect the integrity of our retaining wall and has been confirmed by his engineer and contractor.

FYI. He's been our neighbour since we moved into the house (~6years) and we have a good relationship with him.

We already told him no, but he is pretty adamant and says we should talk in the new year when things get less busy and we can talk to his contractor and his engineer and hopefully work out something.
I'm just curious would any of you let him do this? And more importantly if we do end up giving up that space, could that affect us later on down the road when it comes to sell the property or to upgrade the property or whatever?
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Old 12-26-2012, 04:43 PM   #2
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If you actually give him a permanent legal easement or give away the land then it can be recorded on the title. Might make your property slightly less valuable in the eyes of a buyer.

I think it's best if you don't give up any of your land because it could just cause headaches in the future.
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Old 12-26-2012, 04:48 PM   #3
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There's quite a lot that can be fucked up. If you do let him install the BBQ, I would make sure your ass is covered in regards to any maintenance/structural concerns that may come from cutting a hole in the wall.
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Old 12-26-2012, 04:52 PM   #4
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I would just do what my first assumption is. If he is really a good guy and has been a good neighbour, is honest etc. I don't see why not. I've lived next to the same neigbours for almost 16 years and if he asked to do something like that I wouldn't even think twice and say yeah. Maybe work into it that you can use the BBQ on occassion. I wouldn't GIVE the land away, more so lease/loan it or just come to an agreement that he can use the space but it's not his to keep and if you ever move out the new owners might want it back.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:00 PM   #5
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I would just do what my first assumption is. If he is really a good guy and has been a good neighbour, is honest etc. I don't see why not. I've lived next to the same neigbours for almost 16 years and if he asked to do something like that I wouldn't even think twice and say yeah. Maybe work into it that you can use the BBQ on occassion. I wouldn't GIVE the land away, more so lease/loan it or just come to an agreement that he can use the space but it's not his to keep and if you ever move out the new owners might want it back.
I thought his neighbor wanted the barbecue to be permanent but that is another option, just be very careful and be very clear and explicit with the wording of that agreement.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:07 PM   #6
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does he not have space in his yard for a bbq? just a question as to why he would want your piece of land for it, since its on the corner of your land im thinking it would be on the corner of his land too.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:18 PM   #7
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This is a mock drawing of what he wants.
He doesn't have any space to put a bbq. He literally has no yard space. Everything in front of the car port just drops off and it's right outside his kitchen door. This is the only viable option for him.

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Old 12-26-2012, 05:25 PM   #8
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Tricky situation. Perhaps have your own engineer go over the plans to verify what his has said. Also, instead of giving him the land, should work out something where the BBQ becomes communal property. A chunk of land is valuable, no matter how small it is. Mind you, chances are if you sell your house, prospective owners will not question the random chunk missing from the yard. However, if you do give it up, make sure that new property lines are drawn up.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:27 PM   #9
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I would talk to a lawyer as this can affect who owns that part of the land in the future and possibly property values. It may not be an issue now but later could be if you want it back or when you are selling or if you want to rebuild.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:30 PM   #10
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I remember cases in property law with similar fact patterns as this where people were just trying to be good neighbors but got screwed over in the end. It's better to not give up the land at all but if you really want to then just be really careful.

That civic si is really quite detailed btw.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:31 PM   #11
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yeah, i don't know, personally i wouldn't do it, currently things are good with the neighbor, what if they move, what if you move, there's too many unknown variables in this to be a good decision.

I do have a good relationship with my neighbors, they borrow tools, they help us with our garden, neighborly stuff, but I don't think i would be able to do that.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:34 PM   #12
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I wouldn't do it. The reason is being you paid for it, he didn't. Also if you do give him that piece of land and he adds it to the city then you are out of luck. When you decide to sell your house you no longer own that piece of land and it might affect the price.

Is nice to be a nice to your neighbour but giving away a piece of land is over the top.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:38 PM   #13
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sorry, but don't mixed business with pleasure

he may be a nice guy, but this is your land, and his is his land - he needs to redo his plans... you don't just get free land b/c ur nice.

i'd almost say this is an unreasonable request, unless he wants to pay fair market value for it
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:39 PM   #14
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Tell him NO and let him know you mean it,it's not your families problem that he has no space for a BBQ.The land belongs to you,not him,for all you know,removing a few blocks might affect the structural rigidity of the retaining wall,what if it collapes one day,will he be willing to flip the bill on the damages?I don't care what "his" engineer & contractor has to say,I would get my own engineer and see what he/she has to say about the safety of the wall,not his.If he is such a nice guy,he would respect your answer and not ignore it and still try to procede with his plans.

If all else fails and he still decides to build his BBQ onto your land,let him finish it,then call the city down and show them what he did,he will be in deep shit and will have to pay to fix your wall.

It seems he is just taking advantage of your kindness to do whatever he wants.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:51 PM   #15
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If you can allow him to build and have a notarized contract stating it is still your land, then why not. If not, and it has to become part of his property, then you better get paid for it. And I don't want to seem unneighbourly, but it shouldn't come cheap.

PS - he pays for the notary.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:53 PM   #16
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If that's all he wants in the photo I wouldn't care. That's not exactly a lot of space
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:56 PM   #17
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It's his fault that his building his house too large so why do you have to compensate for his error? I would so no, he might be a nice guy but like others have said it could reduce the value of your house which it's not right. He's trying to take advantage of you and say no sorry he should change his plans if there is not enough room.

I can guarantee you if you did let him do it and later down the road wanted to change something he will make a big deal about it and wouldn't listen to you. Just don't get suckered in because he wants to build a house that takes up the whole property. Not only that do you actually want him bbqing so close to your house? what happens if theres a fire of even the bbq smell coming in since it's such a close location. You have to take a look at the bigger picture which it seems you haven't done yet.
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Old 12-26-2012, 06:04 PM   #18
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If you let him get away with it this time,you know he's going to try and get away with alot more later on.

The old saying goes "give him a inch,he's going to want a mile".
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Old 12-26-2012, 06:08 PM   #19
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He seems like he's doing a lot to make it happen and you've already established that you don't really want to let him.

So... what's your price? If there's an amount that would change your mind, offer to sell him the space.
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Old 12-26-2012, 06:27 PM   #20
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I looked up some sample "land" in the Fraser area, with a tear down house on it.

Not accounting for the value of the house(I didn't subtract from the asking price), that 2x4 spot is worth about $1500. That's in the Fraser area.

So no, he can get a hibachi like anyone else.

You are going to run into: legal issues...do you redraw the lines for this little notch? If you don't, then the next owner is going to ask why there is a hole in the retaining wall. If it is legal, then that is going to become the sole thing that people ask about...why? And I guarantee, that is going to be a huge issue on them buying the house. Will it make a difference in their lives? No. Will they think it will? Fuck yes.

I would recommend against not doing it, but definitely NOT re-drawing the lines. If you say yes, then keep it on your property, at your discretion to change your mind at any time. If you sell, and the next owner wants it gone, it goes. It's their property to do with what they will. Ironically, they'd have to use his land to get rid of it, so good luck.

Even then, you could have a squatter type situation.

I can't even make a co-herent post out of the numerous possibilities this could backfire. Think about that
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Old 12-26-2012, 07:13 PM   #21
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Tell him to put a BBQ on your side and bring over some beers and meat
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Old 12-26-2012, 07:30 PM   #22
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Redrawing the lines will definitely be very costly for you and will effect the future value of the property. Like most of the people said, it's better to be safe and not give him the land. You can let him use it but let him know that in the future, he may "lose" his bbq space. You really need to look at all the details before making any decision though.
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Old 12-26-2012, 07:56 PM   #23
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I know nothing of land laws and such but if I was in such a situation, I would allow it on the condition that the land is still mine, structural integrity is guaranteed and will be fixed by neighbour if problem occurs, and at anytime should you choose to do so, be able to destroy it regardless of if that procedure involves destroying his barbecue. Also, this right should be transferable to any future house-owner of your house.
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Old 12-26-2012, 08:05 PM   #24
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tell him to keep hustlin cuz
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Old 12-26-2012, 08:31 PM   #25
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I can understand a neighbour asking for a cup of sugar or some laundry detergent but a neighbour asking for a parcel of your land is a different story. This sounds like a bad idea.

If he's rebuilding his house, he should've designed it in a manner where he doesn't need your land. He put himself in a bad position so you shouldn't feel bad saying no.
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