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Our block is smaller than we thought

By Known_only_as_Jack - 13 April 2012 17

Good Day Rioters,

Moved into a new property and are in the progress of doing the front garden. We did the right thing and called dial before you dig – got the plans and marked out where I thought they ran.

We were a little close to the gas line for my liking – so we gave them a call and asked them to mark it up for us (Free service so might as well share the liability around).

First set was marked out today and it was within our property – or what I thought was our property. The lines go straight through the garden established by the previous owner. From this I found out that the previous owner had encroached some 1.5 – 2.5m onto the Nature Strip (which must be 5- 6m wide).

Look forward to your response

Cheers

Jack

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17 Responses to
Our block is smaller than we thought
breda 7:23 pm 13 Apr 12

#5
dvaey10:21 am, 13 Apr 12

“A simple guide, is that the ‘boundary’ is marked by your water meter. If your water-meter is 1m from the kerb, thats youre boundary, if your meter is 10m from the kerb, that is your boundary. I discovered this after getting an official warning that it is an offence to have any vehicles parked outside of your boundary line (being the water meter).”
————————————————————————————–
That’s certainly not the case on my property (in old Narrabundah) – and I made sure to check the boundaries before I bought it, as anyone spending that amount of money would usually do, surely? My meter is about 2m in from the boundary.

Anyway, OP, it is unlikely that you will ever be bothered about it unless someone decides to complain – just don’t tell anyone. A diligent future purchaser is likely to pick upon it, though, so be careful about any representations you make if you decide to sell.

GardeningGirl 4:10 pm 13 Apr 12

“Do I have any recourse against either the previous owner / property inspector (The encroachment was not noted in the Building Report)?”

So the McMansionite up the street who has been careful not to touch anything outside his boundary, not even the weeds, might actually be better off comes time to sell than I who have endeavoured to enhance the streetscape and neighbourhood amenity with low growing low maintenance low water usage plantings not encroaching on either footpath accessibility or vehicle visibility? Who knew!

I suspect the water meter is a pretty good indicator, for us anyway. I remember some sort rule of thumb regarding the footpath (2ft behind?) but with streets having footpaths behind the nature strip or in front of the nature strip or meandering in and out or no footpath at all that’s not much help any more.
We got approval to plant on the nature strip years ago and it was no big deal, I’d guess since the drought it’s even easier to justify not having too much grass. The main concerns as far as I remember were don’t plant anything that will cause physical or visual obstructions for pedestrians or traffic, if there’s no proper footpath then leave a certain amount of walkable surface, and keep in mind the possibility that whatever you do might have to be dug up (so it’s not the place to invest in something like a xanthorrhoea). Btw I hope you realise you might have an easement in your backyard too?

chewy14 3:11 pm 13 Apr 12

p1 said :

chewy14 said :

No, this is not correct although it can provide a rough guideline in most cases.

Do you have a specific reason to say that? Because, within the bounds of dvaeys “A simple guide…” opener, I have found that to be commonly true. And it certainly makes sense that the water metre would be where the supply enters your property. If it is somewhere else on a significant number properties I would be interested to know.

Usually the water main will run down the front of your street. And yes the water meter is usually just inside your block boundary so can provide a rough guide.
BUT, it can vary by a few metres and it doesn’t work for every block. The last two places I’ve lived in the water meter was around 2m inside the block boundary.
So if you were looking for something exact, I’d be using ACTMAPi:
http://www.actpla.act.gov.au/tools_resources/maps_land_survey/maps/actmapi2

screaming banshee 2:32 pm 13 Apr 12

Incidentally if they have marked out where the gas line is supposed to be and you hit/damage it even though you were nowhere near the markings it is still your fault.

Just so you know.

dvaey 2:19 pm 13 Apr 12

chewy14 said :

dvaey said :

A simple guide, is that the ‘boundary’ is marked by your water meter. If your water-meter is 1m from the kerb, thats youre boundary, if your meter is 10m from the kerb, that is your boundary. I discovered this after getting an official warning that it is an offence to have any vehicles parked outside of your boundary line (being the water meter).

No, this is not correct although it can provide a rough guideline in most cases.

As I said, in my case I had a vehicle parked about 1.5m in from the kerb, with an established tree between the car the road, however I received a notice to move the vehicle within 14 days because the water meter is about 4m from the kerb in the middle of the front yard. The advice I was given about the boundary beginning at the water meter was from a ranger who seemed fairly sure about his details, and given that he was handing me an official notice for the breach, his knowledge outweighed mine at the time.

p1 1:34 pm 13 Apr 12

chewy14 said :

dvaey said :

A simple guide, is that the ‘boundary’ is marked by your water meter. If your water-meter is 1m from the kerb, thats youre boundary, if your meter is 10m from the kerb, that is your boundary. I discovered this after getting an official warning that it is an offence to have any vehicles parked outside of your boundary line (being the water meter).

No, this is not correct although it can provide a rough guideline in most cases.

Do you have a specific reason to say that? Because, within the bounds of dvaeys “A simple guide…” opener, I have found that to be commonly true. And it certainly makes sense that the water metre would be where the supply enters your property. If it is somewhere else on a significant number properties I would be interested to know.

chewy14 11:01 am 13 Apr 12

dvaey said :

A simple guide, is that the ‘boundary’ is marked by your water meter. If your water-meter is 1m from the kerb, thats youre boundary, if your meter is 10m from the kerb, that is your boundary. I discovered this after getting an official warning that it is an offence to have any vehicles parked outside of your boundary line (being the water meter).

No, this is not correct although it can provide a rough guideline in most cases.

p1 10:54 am 13 Apr 12

c_c said :

rhino said :

Wouldn’t it be unlikely that they would do anything about it? I’d say just forget about it unless they bring it up. Seems unlikely. Surely they have better things to do.

There’s a place I drive past where the garden consists of several gutted car bodies, spreading from house to footpath in various states of rusting disintegration. I sure hope TAMS would have better things to do when it comes to encroachments on the public amenity.

+1. If my place was singled out because the established garden encroaches slightly over the line, I would have to ask if every single other house on the street got a letter too.

dpm 10:39 am 13 Apr 12

dvaey said :

A simple guide, is that the ‘boundary’ is marked by your water meter. If your water-meter is 1m from the kerb, thats youre boundary, if your meter is 10m from the kerb, that is your boundary. I discovered this after getting an official warning that it is an offence to have any vehicles parked outside of your boundary line (being the water meter).

Thanks for that! Very interesting to know. And if it is 100% correct, then the OP needn’t stress too much as the place we are currently in has had a large hedge (and garden bed) in front of this line for at least 20 years, by the looks. I’m sure lots of houses do!

c_c 10:36 am 13 Apr 12

rhino said :

Wouldn’t it be unlikely that they would do anything about it? I’d say just forget about it unless they bring it up. Seems unlikely. Surely they have better things to do.

There’s a place I drive past where the garden consists of several gutted car bodies, spreading from house to footpath in various states of rusting disintegration. I sure hope TAMS would have better things to do when it comes to encroachments on the public amenity.

dvaey 10:21 am 13 Apr 12

A simple guide, is that the ‘boundary’ is marked by your water meter. If your water-meter is 1m from the kerb, thats youre boundary, if your meter is 10m from the kerb, that is your boundary. I discovered this after getting an official warning that it is an offence to have any vehicles parked outside of your boundary line (being the water meter).

rhino 10:15 am 13 Apr 12

Wouldn’t it be unlikely that they would do anything about it? I’d say just forget about it unless they bring it up. Seems unlikely. Surely they have better things to do.

chewy14 9:53 am 13 Apr 12

Um,
so you didn’t look at the block boundary drawings when you bought the place and you just assumed that the garden was within your property boundary?

I suggest you read:
http://www.tams.act.gov.au/play/pcl/parks_reserves_and_open_places/trees_and_forests/trees/frequently_asked_questions#naturestrip

And then contact TAMS.

Morgan 9:38 am 13 Apr 12

Call TAMS

Wokie 9:35 am 13 Apr 12

I assume you didn’t have a survey done on the boundaries before you bought the place.

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