Terms of Use - REALTOR®, REALTORS®, and the REALTOR® logo are certification marks that are owned by REALTOR® Canada Inc. and licensed exclusively to The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). These certification marks identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA and who must abide by CREA’s By-Laws and the REALTOR® Code. The MLS® trademark and the MLS® logo are owned by CREA. The information contained on this site is based in whole or in part on information that is provided by members, who are responsible for its accuracy. CREA reproduces and distributes this information as a service for its members and assumes no responsibility. The listing content on this website is protected by copyright and other laws, and is intended solely for the private use by individuals. Any other reproduction, distribution or use of the content, in whole or in part, is specifically forbidden. The prohibited uses include commercial use, “screen scraping”, “database scraping”, and any other activity intended to collect, store, reorganize or manipulate data on the pages produced by or displayed on this website.

Oliver Reprich

Oliver Reprich Muskoka REALTOR

My neighbour says my fence is on their land and that I must move it. The fence was already on the property when I bought it 10 years ago. Do I have to move the fence?

You need to investigate the issue and get the facts first. It is perfectly reasonable to ask your neighbour how they arrived at this conclusion and request to see their survey plan. They may be basing their contention on some un-authoritative (non-survey) source and lack proof that the fence encroaches onto their property. But don’t ignore your neighbour; their claim may be valid and the problem won’t go away. You don’t want it to grow into a dispute that will cause emotional and financial distress.

The law does not compel you to move the fence on demand, and your neighbour cannot simply rip down the fence and move it. If the fence has been there for a long time, it may represent evidence of a possessory claim, sometimes called “squatter's rights” (i.e., acquiring title to land when the true owner has neglected to assert their own rights for a specified period of time).

Start by getting a survey to assess your neighbour’s claim.  Commission a new survey or buy an existing survey plan from PYB (if you don’t have one) or come to an agreement with the neighbour to have a surveyor mark the boundary on the ground so you can both see the actual location of the boundary. If the dispute progresses, you may need legal advice. Ultimately only a court of law can make the final determination.

Existing survey plans are a valuable resource to homeowners.  Please remember, though, that an older survey plan is a snapshot of the property at that time and may not be an accurate reflection of what exists on the property today. If you are unsure, consider consulting a surveyor or commissioning a new survey.

More common questions related to the topic: Legal

What are quitclaim deeds used for?

What is a quitclaim deed?

What is FINTRAC?

Why do I need to show my ID when listing my property?

What does the phrase grandfathered into something mean?

What is an easement, a restrictive covenant, and an encumbrance?

Can a condo property manager enter my condo unit without notice? 

What is Adverse Possession?

What is an Easement?

Why do Easements Exist?

How do I know if there's an Easement on my Property?

What is the difference between an S/T and a T/w easement?

Will the government protect my property boundaries?

What is an encroachment?

Ask your own Question.

MLS®, REALTOR®, and the associated logos are trademarks of The Canadian Real Estate Association.

Bracebridge Realty, your trusted local real estate brokerage in the "Heart of Muskoka"

Log In