A front garden in our pretty cul-de-sac is shockingly neglected

Our eight dormer cul-de-sac in a coastal county is pretty as a picture and well maintained by its owners, with the exception of a house at the entrance, which has become a talking point in the village. This home’s overgrown lawn is shockingly neglected, strewn with discarded toys, overflowing trash cans and broken fences, a rusty barbecue, old paint cans, an unused trampoline to the side. I could go on … The large back garden is largely unused.

My neighbors and I do not know how to approach this distressing situation. We are torn between offending the owner of the house and the inevitable effect on the value of our own properties of this unsightly introduction to our back road. The advice ranges from offering to help the owner deal with the chaos (we tried this individually with no success) to selling and moving on.

Most of the residents of our cul-de-sac are of a certain age and have varying degrees of mobility. We love the place we live and we work hard to keep it beautiful. This situation causes us great distress.

Ed Carey writes: This is obviously a delicate situation where the previous option of individual approaches has failed, and a group approach is less likely to be successful. I think that the group approach could also unfortunately lead to an inevitable deterioration of neighborly relations and the owner in question to take root in his views.

I assume you have tried or discussed the situation with other family members or acquaintances. I don’t think you should consider selling – it’s a drastic option. You clearly love your location and, especially in today’s market, your options for where to go are very limited. In addition, you may well find yourself in an “out of the pan and in the fire” situation.

Your only other option is to contact the board. The Litter Pollution Act, 1997, as amended by the Waste Management (Amendment) Act 2001 and the Protection of the Environment Act 2003, introduced penalties to help combat waste pollution problems more effectively. The owner or occupant of a property visible from a public place is required to keep the property free of rubbish. This means that any outdoor space on a property visible from a public place must be free of litter. Failure to keep your property garbage free may result in a fine or prosecution by your local authority.

In addition, your local authority also has additional powers to require a household or business operator to indicate how and where they dispose of their waste. This is especially relevant if the owner or business owner does not have a garbage collection service or take their waste to a licensed disposal facility, which your neighbor seems to be. Many county councils hold a “Are You Waste Compliant?” »Campaign aimed primarily at households to ensure their waste is properly disposed of. Your council will have a garbage pollution officer, and I suggest filing a complaint with the details with the agent, who should be able to enforce the cleanup of garbage in front of the property.

Ed Carey is a Chartered Residential Agency Surveyor and a Fellow of the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland

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