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Homeowner Wonders If She’d Be Wrong To Build A Fence To Keep Neighborhood Kids Out Of Her Yard


Homebuyers looking for the perfect house to buy rarely find that such a thing exists, and at worst, discover problems after all the moving boxes have been unpacked.

Redditor Jumpy_Hat8913 is a 27-year-old woman who bought a new home in an area where she had hoped to have more privacy, but that was not the case.

She visited the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit to ask a hypothetical “Would I Be The A**hole” (WIBTA) question after struggling with a dilemma involving an inconvenient situation on her property.

She asked:

“WIBTA for building a fence to keep kids out of my yard”

The Original Poster (OP) explained:

“I purchased a house in November in the suburbs looking for more privacy and due to [the virus] I haven’t met many of my neighbors.”

“This winter 3 kids started showing up to sled in my yard. I’m not sure which house they live in, but no one has introduced themselves to me.”

“It only happened a couple of times, so I decided to let it go.”

“Fast forward to a week ago and the same kids started showing up and are playing on a swing set left to me by the previous owner.”

“I was kind of annoyed because no one had asked and I felt like they were making me responsible for their kids since no adults were around.”

“Also we live a block from a huge park with a playground in a very quiet neighborhood.”

“My boyfriend thinks we should go talk to the neighbors about it and ask for at least an adult to be present. I just want to build a fence and not have to deal with it. But I feel bad denying children joy.”

“So, WIBTA if I built a fence (with permits and a land survey) without consulting my neighbors and denying children a place to play?”

Strangers online were asked to declare one of the following:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
  • NAH – No A**holes Here

Many Redditors sided with the OP and viewed her as someone who would not be the a**hole.

“NTA. Put a fence up and i guarantee the parents will show up to tell you that you are an a**. You are not one tho🤪” – TemporaryExam5717

“And if one of those kids get hurt a letter from their lawyer will be in your mailbox.”

“Build a fence. NTA” – Jim-Holden

“Yep-NTA- I am in the process of having a fence built for the same reason. I have kids just randomly walking around in my backyard. I caught one with her dogs by calling out to her from the window.”

“She looked so guilty. Her response was, my dogs haven’t gone to the bathroom, I asked, what are you doing in my backyard?, she said its nice. I asked her to please not wander into my backyard. Fence is going up next week.” – InitialFoot

“Only in America would an ‘attractive nuisance’ — yes that is the legal term — make the homeowner legally liable for injuries that occur to children who TRESPASS on their property.”

“BUILD THE FENCE! When you get dragged into court, it will be part of your defense that you took steps to deny the kids access to your property.”

“Until then… I’d suggest that you call the cops every time you see them. Use the words ‘trespassing’ and ‘children without an adult presence’ (cause that might get the parents on the cops radar).”

“You’re trying to establish that the kids (and the parents) knew it was wrong to be on your property and that you tried to make them stop.”

“Also, seriously consider taking down the swings. Or at least removing the seats when you aren’t using them.”

“Oh and is there an ultra- NTA.” – AffectionateMall5074

“NTA. If a kid gets injuries on your property, you can end up being held liable and sued.” – dusktildawn9

“NTA. It’s your yard and people should teach your children to ask before using it.”

“Our first house had a family in it before we bought so all the neighbourhood kids thought our yard was still fair game to run through. They were 40% of the reason we immediately built a fence.”

“One of them even tried to argue with me that I’m not allowed to build a fence while we were building the darn thing. (dunno where where she got that from?!?).” – travellingdink

“NTA. Your land, your property, your rules. The kids want to play? They can go to the park like everyone else. I’m sure they have bikes or scooters.” – Mistake_Nutshell

“NTA Build your fence without guilt. If those kids get hurt on your property, you will be at fault legally. Meanwhile, if you catch them tell them to leave and try to find their parents and tell them to keep their kids out of your yard.”

“It is not your responsibility to provide joy to other people’s kids.” – Evil_Black_Swan

“NTA at all. You do not need to consult with your neighbors about changes to your house, and your yard should be a place for you to relax and enjoy.”

“Some people may really enjoy having the kids come over, and that is fine for them, but obviously it is causing you some stress, which I am sure you don’t need. If you build a fence and then want to let the kids come in, you can.” – Merigold00

“NTA r u kidding, if you dont want the fence maybe call the police and tell him there’s kids on your property and no adults are present. Otherwise build the fence.”

“I’ve seen so many post about things like this and it shocks me that people are even brave enough to walk on a strangers property.. i could never.”

“I grew up woth a fence around my house and its kind of the best thing. No neighbors can see you and its feels so chill to be outside in private.” – redditusernikki

“NTA they’re the ones in the wrong. You were nicer than me, I would have told them to get off my property the first time I saw them.” – dizmalette

A strong majority of Redditors agreed the OP would not be the a**hole for putting up a fence but would be likely to face a lawsuit if one of the kids suffered an injury while on her property.

Written by Koh Mochizuki

Koh Mochizuki is a Los Angeles based actor whose work has been spotted anywhere from Broadway stages to Saturday Night Live.
He received his B.A. in English literature and is fluent in Japanese.
In addition to being a neophyte photographer, he is a huge Disney aficionado and is determined to conquer all Disney parks in the world to publish a photographic chronicle one day. Mickey goals.
Instagram: kohster Twitter: @kohster1 Flickr: nyckmo