My question involves real estate located in the State of: California
My neighbor wants a concrete wall separating our yards removed and replaced with a new wooden fence. I am very fond of the wall but I agreed in the interest of neighborly harmony.
Now he has told the contractor that he will not pay for any of the cost of removing the existing wall because it's entirely on my property. In other words he wants me to pay 100% of the cost of removing the existing wall. He has agreed to pay half of the cost of the new fence.
I have no independent knowledge of the actual location of the property line. If he's correct then the wall is adjacent to the property line, with the support posts either touching the line or perhaps an inch away.
I have not talked to him since I learned from the contractor of his refusal to pay. I am trying to understand what the law actually is before I talk to him. I have read California Code section 841 but I'm confused about whether the wall being completely on my property would matter.
Additional facts, possibly relevant:
- The wall was there before either of us bought our houses
- His contractor says the wall is water damaged. It is not on the verge of falling apart, though.
- The wall is beautiful on my side, ugly on his.
- He doesn't want to just put a fence up on his side and leave the wall, since rats could nest between the fence and wall
- He did not follow the official procedure laid out in Section 841. He brought me a proposal from a contractor, with no explicit cost-sharing . I (and the contractor) assumed we were going to split the cost.
- No work has started yet.
I totally understand why he wants the wall removed. I'm mostly upset that he wants me to pay the whole cost of doing so when it is at his behest and for his benefit.