Although trees can increase your property value and the enjoyment of your outside spaces, having a tree near your property line can easily lead to conflicts with your neighbor. Whether the tree is on your property and your neighbor trimmed it back in a way that damaged and killed the tree or the tree is on your neighbor’s property and they don’t maintain it, trees can easily cause damage to neighborly relationships.
Maybe one of you feels like the other should share the cost of mitigating damage caused by the tree in a storm because it dropped branches on a house, vehicle or fence. Perhaps you want your neighbor to cover the cost of replacing a tree damaged by their inappropriate trimming efforts.
If you can’t resolve the issue, you could easily wind up going to court and spending thousands of dollars debating about a plant. Sitting down together in mediation can be a way to prevent the expense and embarrassment of going to court over a boundary tree dispute.
Mediation can help you find a solution that works for everyone
When you go to court, the chances are good that the ruling will be in favor of one party over the other, leading to severe disappointment for one neighbor and the potential for prolonged anger and resentment between people who will have to live in close proximity.
Mediation, on the other hand, gives both parties the opportunity to advocate for an outcome that is reasonable and fair. Unlike a judge who has the ultimate say, a mediator primarily serves to help you interact without the conflict getting any more intense.
Mediation can keep things more civil
If you were to go to court with your neighbor, it is likely that the relationship between the two of you would suffer for a long time as a result. Mediation forces you to work with one another and can help you repair the damage that the conflict over a tree has caused.
Before you decide that going to court is your only option, it may be worth it to see if your neighbor would consider mediation as a viable alternative to resolving your tree problem.