When the Original Poster (OP) and her husband moved into their dream house, which backs onto a river and sprawling land, they were informed of a longstanding neighborhood tradition: locals cutting through their property to access community trails. But as days turned to weeks, the reality of these trespassers, especially with a baby on the way and riled-up dogs, wasn’t the idyllic community gesture OP had imagined. Now facing a dilemma, would OP take drastic measures and disrupt community dynamics or find a middle ground?
OP and her husband recently purchased a new house with 3 acres of land. One of the prime attractions of the property is the river that it backs up to. At the closing, they are informed by the previous owners about neighbors using their land to access trails.
The Unspoken Agreement
The previous owner informs OP about the neighbors’ habit of cutting through the land. Some would bring their dogs, while others would go four-wheeling. The latter, however, was frowned upon and even attracted fines.
OP’s initial reaction to the neighbors using the trail was indifference. From her perspective, it was far enough to be out of sight and, thus, out of mind. The prior owner mentioned the neighbors’ respectful approach to him.
The Expected Introduction
Before moving, the previous owner had advised the neighbors to introduce themselves to OP and seek permission. This left OP expecting a visit from them. But time passed, and no one approached.
Despite no formal introductions, OP spots the neighbors traversing her yard multiple times. This raises concerns for her, given that she hadn’t granted them explicit permission to use the land. Adding to the unease is that OP’s two dogs become agitated when other dogs are near.
A Change of Heart
Contrary to her earlier assumption, the presence of the neighbors on her property starts bothering OP. She didn’t appreciate their lack of courtesy in asking for permission. Furthermore, the proximity was closer than she’d initially perceived.
Being 38 weeks pregnant amplifies OP’s concerns as her protective instincts are heightened. The safety of her new home becomes paramount as she anticipates and prepares for the arrival of her baby.
The View from the Yard
When OP looks out into her yard, she can see the neighbors. This isn’t what she had envisioned for her new home. It felt intrusive. The trail on OP’s land serves as a connection for locals to other trails beyond.
The Trail’s Allure
The trails are a significant part of the community’s recreational activities, which makes the situation even more complicated. With all these concerns piling up, OP contemplates a course of action.
Blocking off the access point to the trail becomes a real consideration. Yet, she is conflicted about this decision. OP wonders if she would be in the wrong for wanting to restrict access. Seeking external input becomes crucial for her decision-making.
The Delicate Balance
OP acknowledges the delicate balance between her family’s privacy and the community’s desire to access the recreational trails. The question is, how can one be achieved without sacrificing the other?
Legacy of the Past Owner
The previous owner’s history with the neighbors casts a long shadow. His arrangement with them and his emphasis on respect are both significant. It leaves OP wondering if she can establish a new agreement.
OP grapples with the idea of setting boundaries without causing discord. The question is how to assert her rights as a property owner while being considerate. OP finds herself on a quest to find a solution that caters to everyone’s needs.
While OP is new to the community, she realizes the importance of good neighborly relations. How she handles this situation could set the tone for future interactions. Her decision could have long-lasting implications.
Was The Woman’s Behavior Appropriate?
OP posts her story online for feedback and guidance from the internet community. The readers in the forum had a lot of mixed views on the matter.
One reader said, “Likely there are less convenient ways to get there, but your property is likely the easiest. It would have been great had they approached you and asked permission, but they didn’t. Consider posting No Trespassing signs as well.”
Another Commenter Thinks
Another responder wrote, “In some places, having been allowed to use it for several years grants continued access. Is there another entry to the trails? Good luck.”
A Third View on The Story
A different person stated, “If your dog bites them, if they slip and fall near the river, etc., they can sue you, and you will be dealing with legalities for years.”
A Final Perspective on the Matter
Another reader commented, “It’s a hard thing to be new in town and to take away something that people have become accustomed to. Friendly conversations go a long way towards gaining acceptance of what will be a loss to your neighbors.”
Showdown at 40,000 Feet When Passenger Refuses to Move Up Her Reclined Seat in Economy.