House Calls: Different Opinion
Dear Edith: My husband and I have been following the recent discussion in your column related to the removal of a mature hedge on a corner lot and replacement with white fencing. It seems that all feedback so far has been to retain the hedge.
Well, we are going to be the dissenting opinion.
We also live on a corner lot, and we have an in-ground pool in the side yard. The pool area and the two neighbor-facing sides of the lot were home to 200 feet of a privet hedge that was 5 to 6 feet wide and 6 to 7 feet tall. Although it looked nice, it was a large chore to keep up, with trimming required several times a year, which was no small job!
A few years ago, we decided to remove the hedge and replace it with white vinyl fencing. It is a decision we have never regretted! We fenced in the pool area and a small area in our backyard that has a patio and leads to the pool. We chose a taller, semi-private type of fencing for the neighbor-facing sections of the yard and shorter, more decorative fencing for the street-facing sections.
It looks beautiful, and it was amazing how much yard we gained by removing the hedge. My husband still groans every time he sees a hedge in the area that needs trimming, as it reminds him of how much work it was to keep ours up. We have no regrets. We vote to get rid of the hedge! -- R. L. and D. S.
Answer: Yes, yours is the very first vote for replacing that hedge.
Ms. Lank: About 25 years ago, my mother and my aunt turned over their home to my sister and me, giving us 50 percent each. We then purchased another home with the proceeds of that home's sale. That was with both our signatures giving us 50 percent equal ownership.
I have just learned that my sister put the home into a trust and is leaving her son 100 percent beneficial interest. Please advise me of my rights to reclaim my 50 percent. -- J. R.
Answer: Your sister has the right to do what she likes with her share. I'm guessing the trust now owns her half of the house. Your 50 percent of ownership shouldn't be affected.