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Fences and Your Neighbours

When replacing or repairing a dividing fence, it's important to make sure both you and your neighbour are happy. Here are a few tips to make sure things go smoothly when working on a shared fence.

Fencing laws

Laws on shared fencing are slightly different in each state and territory, so check with your local council or property management authority for specific details. Generally, the owners of adjoining properties must share the costs of fixing or replacing a shared fence. If one owner wants a fence of a higher standard than is strictly necessary, they need to pay the extra costs. Special rules may apply for properties that adjoin farms or public land. 


Talk to your neighbours

The first step in replacing or fixing a shared fence is to approach your neighbour in a friendly manner. Discuss with them the type of fence needed and how you will share the costs. Some things to consider:

  1. Do you want a fence with a high degree of privacy or a more open one? 'Open' fences such as wrought iron  can help with friendly neighbourhood relations.
  2. Does the new fence match the others in the neighbourhood?
  3. Do you or your neighbour have any pets [Link to dog fencing article] that might influence the size or type of fence?

Get a quote

Once you've agreed on the type of fence, either you or your neighbour need to get a quote for the work. Make sure you discuss the quote with your neighbour before accepting it, to make sure you are both satisfied. Disputes If you and your neighbour can't agree on sharing costs, you might have to seek legal advice to resolve the dispute. This can have a permanent effect on neighbourhood relations, so please do it only as a last resort!

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