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Can City Make Me Cut Tree Down?

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  • Jul 8th, 2022 9:58 am
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[OP]
Sr. Member
Jan 22, 2012
630 posts
252 upvotes
Bradford

Can City Make Me Cut Tree Down?

My neighbour installed a pool last year. I have three large trees in my yard that aren’t near his yard.
He came to my door yesterday and asked if I would be willing to cut them down (he would pay for them to be cut down). He said the trees shade his pool and pool deck all day so he can’t fully enjoy the sunshine.
I said I wasn’t willing to cut them down as I like the privacy they provide. He said he plans to contact the city. I assume they can’t make me cut them down if there is nothing wrong with them?
76 replies
Deal Addict
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Feb 25, 2004
1442 posts
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Longueuil
Very unlikely. Usually, it is the exact opposite: you need valid reasons (shade is not a valid reason) to get an authorization to cut large trees otherwise the city will not allow it. I would simply ignore him, it would be very surprising that the city will contact you.

Contacting the city because trees of a neighbor shade is pool will make him look like an idiot. I am not sure why he told you...
Try not! Do or do not, there is no try...
Sr. Member
Oct 25, 2017
786 posts
749 upvotes
Unless you want the trees gone, tell ‘em to pound sand. Honestly municipalities are trying to encourage residents to plant more trees, not eliminate them and it drives me nuts when the only reason is because “it puts my man made pool in the shade”
Deal Guru
Jun 26, 2011
14697 posts
4823 upvotes
GTA
Just based on his reaction I'd look into getting some more trees.
Deal Addict
May 21, 2015
1166 posts
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Sarnia, ON
Absolutely not. They can only cut off what hangs over their property and which doesn't kill the tree. We have neighbors behind and beside with pools and we live in a very leafy neighborhood. I have 3 enormous oak trees along the back and when the latest neighbors moved in behind he asked me if I'd be willing to have them cut down if he paid. I said no because that's why we moved to this neighborhood. He was good about it. The next door neighbors had a new pool and lanscaping done to the tune of over $200k . There is one fairly large Locus tree on my side that hangs over their yard. It wasn't a problem until they had the pool done. The Locus tree drops a lot of small seeds (thousands) that look like small peppercorns and they were literally covering their pool deck. Admittedly it was awful how much there was. You couldn't see them before because they fell on grass and even I wasn't really aware of how much they dropped because they fell onto my lawn and bushes. I told them they could cut the tree back over their property line so long as it didn't kill the tree and they were good about that. Got a goodly amount of it but the tree still looks good. THey still have some of the seeds but it's very managable now.
Deal Fanatic
Aug 31, 2010
6236 posts
4586 upvotes
Topher86 wrote: My neighbour installed a pool last year. I have three large trees in my yard that aren’t near his yard.
He came to my door yesterday and asked if I would be willing to cut them down (he would pay for them to be cut down). He said the trees shade his pool and pool deck all day so he can’t fully enjoy the sunshine.
I said I wasn’t willing to cut them down as I like the privacy they provide. He said he plans to contact the city. I assume they can’t make me cut them down if there is nothing wrong with them?
Are the trees in at least okay health (ie not condemnable)? Given they provide shade, I'd say they're likely not condemnable. Are the trees protected by Private Tree bylaw (ie are they 30cm or greater in diameter, the width or a school ruler?) If so, he's got a legitimate 0% chance. He is able to trim limbs over the property line so long as they are inconsequential to the health of the tree.

He'll need to pay thousands just to have the city view his permit, which includes full arborist report (you need to let certified arborists onto your property to inspect trees). He'll then have to pay an application fee per tree to remove a neighbouring tree ($800 per tree). Then, the city will come out, look at the trees, talk to you (maybe) and then tell him to pound sand.

City council will have your back on this one if it ever got that far (ie forestry grants the permit, you appeal it), but trust me it won't get that far. If he's stupid, he will apply and the city will just collect the application fees lol

On that note I recommend setting up a camera in your backyard with the trees in view. Seriously.
Deal Fanatic
Feb 4, 2010
6241 posts
5540 upvotes
What a self-entitled, self-absorbed, selfish prick of a neighbour you have. Wait until the leaves drop into his pool.
Newbie
May 9, 2017
25 posts
58 upvotes
Your neighbor won't get far and will be wasting the city's time Winking Face.

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Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
4860 posts
2376 upvotes
lol no way would the city make you get rid of them unless they can be considered a hazard, but I think that's a pretty high bar and the trees need to be rotting or sick.

Keep an eye on them in case the neighbour tries to do something they aren't allowed to....
Deal Fanatic
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Dec 4, 2009
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hvc wrote: On that note I recommend setting up a camera in your backyard with the trees in view. Seriously.
Agreed, tout d'suite.
"I'm a bit upset. I've been grab by the back without any alert and lubrification"
Lucky
Deal Addict
Mar 22, 2017
2280 posts
2899 upvotes
West GTA
Neighbour can trim trees back if they overhang his property, so long as it doesn't kill the tree. They have no other options. I figure it was a nice try by the neighbour, but they're out of luck and if their pool is shaded then it's their mistake and not your problem. I mean if you wanted them down then it'd be great, but if you don't then too bad. If they mention it again, recommend a powerful pool heater to get the water temp up.
Deal Fanatic
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Dec 4, 2009
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I know it shouldn't, but the stupidity of people still surprises me. Cut down perfectly healthy trees on someone else's property for the enjoyment of your pool. Smh...

People are f***ed.
"I'm a bit upset. I've been grab by the back without any alert and lubrification"
Lucky
Deal Fanatic
Jun 7, 2005
9579 posts
1045 upvotes
There is no way city will approve your neighbor's cutting request due to the shadeto their pool.

By the way, I don't find regular trees can be good privacy barrier but taking lot of space from the backyard. White cedar is perfect for privacy purpose. It is is all seasons and less invasive to neighbors' yards.
Deal Fanatic
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Oct 13, 2008
5934 posts
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Durham
Topher86 wrote: My neighbour installed a pool last year. I have three large trees in my yard that aren’t near his yard.
He came to my door yesterday and asked if I would be willing to cut them down (he would pay for them to be cut down). He said the trees shade his pool and pool deck all day so he can’t fully enjoy the sunshine.
I said I wasn’t willing to cut them down as I like the privacy they provide. He said he plans to contact the city. I assume they can’t make me cut them down if there is nothing wrong with them?
If it isn't breaching the property line ... he can't do anything but cry all about it.

I'd plant more trees, bushes, flowers ... HECK! I'll go beyond that and start building racks for a vegetable garden! Just make sure that branches or vines that get close to the property ... you take the initiative to trim it.

It's your tree on your property. Enough said.

*** My neighbours have a deck right up against the fence with a pool. I deliberately planted a couple of climbing roses and the branches are high up against the fence now. They use the fence to hang their towels! What the??????? So ... their towels always get HUNG up in the rose thorns ... and because it is high enough ... it prevents the kids from LEANING against the fence top into my yard to talk to the kids on the other side of my property.
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Sr. Member
Oct 25, 2017
786 posts
749 upvotes
Toukolou wrote: I know it shouldn't, but the stupidity of people still surprises me. Cut down perfectly healthy trees on someone else's property for the enjoyment of your pool. Smh...

People are f***ed.
Right!? My thoughts exactly.
hvc wrote:

On that note I recommend setting up a camera in your backyard with the trees in view. Seriously.
This. I’d be getting cameras setup ASAP, people go rogue on this kind of thing all the time.
Deal Fanatic
Aug 31, 2010
6236 posts
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chris416yyz wrote: Right!? My thoughts exactly.


This. I’d be getting cameras setup ASAP, people go rogue on this kind of thing all the time.
Yep. I was talking to an urban planner friend who had a client go on vacation and came home to their tree cut down lol
Deal Fanatic
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Oct 13, 2008
5934 posts
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Durham
chris416yyz wrote: This. I’d be getting cameras setup ASAP, people go rogue on this kind of thing all the time.
a couple of bulldogs should do the trick
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Deal Expert
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Oct 5, 2008
16307 posts
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Toronto
the sense of entitlement is strong with the neighbour.

At least he offered to pay to have YOUR trees cut down.

:rolleyes:
Deal Addict
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Feb 20, 2015
3369 posts
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Southern Ontario
Most of the trees on my block are "city trees", planted by them, on their portion of the lot.

Douche neighbour should have thought of this before he spent thousands on a pool. Your trees (or the city's) on your Lot, he's out of luck, swimming in the shade!

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