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Need advice on how to deal with a neighbor

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Need advice on how to deal with a neighbor

Postby UALOneKPlus on Sun Jul 13, 2003 12:01 am

I have a contractor friend whom I have helped quite a few times with IT related needs. In return my friend insisted to help me on a few things.

Today he came over with his crew and helped to pressure wash my house and my wooden fence, and tomorrow he's going to come back and seal/stain my fence.

The problem was that I had no idea that my friend had rented a pressure washer to help me do this today, and I had no idea what the results would be. So when he called me an hour before he was coming over, I couldn't really tell him no, that I didn't want my house and fence pressure washed.

Well, everything went well, except that during the washing of my fence on left side, the dirt, overspray of water, and some leaves from the vines on the house dirtied the walkway / side of house of my neighbors.

I was feeling really bad, and told my neighbor that we would stain his deck for free, pressure wash his house, sweep and wash down the side of his house. I even offered to hire a professional cleaning crew to clean the exterior of his house to brand new condition.

Well, my neighbor is very upset at me, because he and his wife had just cleaned their windows a day ago, and the stuff on the side of their house/yard got dirty.

I was on very good terms with this neighbor, and we helped each out a lot with various things. But he turned down my offer of help on every single item, even though I can tell that he and his wife are very upset still.

I don't know what else to do, and feel very bad about the whole situation. It's not easy when a good friend who helps me with good intentions accidentally dirties a neighbor's house. To my eyes the neigbhor's house is not that dirty, kind of like when a rain storm came through and got dirt on the yard.

What would you guys / gals think should be done to fix this situation??? :cry: :cry:
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Postby F1Pilot on Sun Jul 13, 2003 8:08 am

Heya, UALOneKPlus.

Well, what can you do, aside from explaining the situation in whole to your neighbor, AND apologize? I mean, your offer to clean it up was awesome, and class act. A mistake is a mistake, and all you can do is say that you'll be more careful in the future, or just won't do it again. If they don't relax about it, they're just being downright pissy. I would have made the same offer that you did to them. Good call. Hell, at least you didn't do any undoable damage to their property.

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Postby MonteLDS on Sun Jul 13, 2003 11:18 am

UALOneKPlus,
Egg their house and tell them sorry and that you really have to clean up their house this time :wink:

but on a more real note, 3 question. You said that
my neighbor is very upset at me, because he and his wife had just cleaned their windows a day ago
and I was wondering in which way was he/she upset. (yelling, angry face, he started to swing his prized babe ruth bat at you). I know people who say people are upset when they are really just *sigh* (dissapointed).
Second Question. Why did you say
What would you guys / gals think should be done to fix this situation???
you know their are no gals on this board :wink:
And lastly does your wife or you make awesome brownies?

Advice: Assuming that the neighbor was mad *but not to the point of wanting to injur you physicaly*. Assuming that you forgot their no girls on this board :). And assuming that you can make some kind of good desert. May I suggest, bringing over something yummy or invite them over for dinner since they won't except your help. This could always help.

I think you are a wonderful neighbor, please move here! :)
Good Luck.
ps: People get over things in time. So if they reject your dinner/desert, I hope you can be satisfied with what you have tried to do to resolve things
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Postby Ian on Sun Jul 13, 2003 1:12 pm

Aren't neighbors great? I keep telling my wife we should move out to the country so we don't have to deal with kind of stuff. Then I won't have to hear about it when our dog poops too close to the lot line.

Buy the guy a case of good beer and a gift certificate for a nice restaurant.

If he's still mad after that.. there's nothing you can do.
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Postby MonteLDS on Sun Jul 13, 2003 4:18 pm

Ian wrote:I keep telling my wife we should move out to the country so we don't have to deal with kind of stuff.


off topic. but if you moved to the country you would have to pay for a T1 to come to your house cause their no way you might get DSL or Cable out there :)
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Postby UALOneKPlus on Sun Jul 13, 2003 4:53 pm

MonteLDS wrote:UALOneKPlus,
Egg their house and tell them sorry and that you really have to clean up their house this time :wink:


LOL :lol:

but on a more real note, 3 question. You said that
my neighbor is very upset at me, because he and his wife had just cleaned their windows a day ago
and I was wondering in which way was he/she upset. (yelling, angry face, he started to swing his prized babe ruth bat at you). I know people who say people are upset when they are really just *sigh* (dissapointed).


He and his wife weren't yelling. They are not the type to yell. But I can tell that they were just stewing inside. They were so upset it probably ruined their weekend. To be fair, if it was me that the dirt happened to, I'd be like no big deal, you clean it up for me and I"ll be fine. But they showed how analy they were. It's very territorial of them to be so mad, I guess.

Second Question. Why did you say
What would you guys / gals think should be done to fix this situation???
you know their are no gals on this board :wink:

I know, but you never know, some girl might be lurking and might offer some good advice :wink:


And lastly does your wife or you make awesome brownies?

Advice: Assuming that the neighbor was mad *but not to the point of wanting to injur you physicaly*. Assuming that you forgot their no girls on this board :). And assuming that you can make some kind of good desert. May I suggest, bringing over something yummy or invite them over for dinner since they won't except your help. This could always help.


No, my wife is not that good of a cook *hint*hint*. I do all the cooking at home, so that we won't starve. My wife just tells me all the food to buy that she won't eat, lol :wink:

I think you are a wonderful neighbor, please move here! :)
Good Luck.
ps: People get over things in time. So if they reject your dinner/desert, I hope you can be satisfied with what you have tried to do to resolve things


Thanks a lot, that means a lot to me. I would like to know that I'm not being a jerk about the thing. It was unintentional, and the only way I can make up for it is to apologize and offer something in return. Right now they are so mad they won't accept that. I can't physically turn back time and undo the spray washing, and it's not even permanent damage like spray paingting their house or something.

I stayed up most of last night worrying about this issue. Today I talked to my contractor friend, who also was confronted by the neighbor when he came over today. My contractor friend offered the same assistance again to my neighbor, and my neighbor just refused and is acting very pissy.

Thanks for your advice. It's really helpful and makes me feel a lot better...
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Postby UALOneKPlus on Sun Jul 13, 2003 4:55 pm

F1Pilot wrote:Heya, UALOneKPlus.

Well, what can you do, aside from explaining the situation in whole to your neighbor, AND apologize? I mean, your offer to clean it up was awesome, and class act. A mistake is a mistake, and all you can do is say that you'll be more careful in the future, or just won't do it again. If they don't relax about it, they're just being downright pissy. I would have made the same offer that you did to them. Good call. Hell, at least you didn't do any undoable damage to their property.



Thanks alot for your kind words. It helps a lot. It's not easy having a neighbor that I thought were cool act this way, and your advice is very helpful.
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Postby UALOneKPlus on Sun Jul 13, 2003 4:58 pm

Ian wrote:Aren't neighbors great? I keep telling my wife we should move out to the country so we don't have to deal with kind of stuff. Then I won't have to hear about it when our dog poops too close to the lot line.

Buy the guy a case of good beer and a gift certificate for a nice restaurant.

If he's still mad after that.. there's nothing you can do.


Thanks Ian. I'm going to buy a case of Budweiser or Corona for them, and a gift certificate. There's nothing else that I can do.

I think I've been a great neighbor to them.

Their dog and cat comes over to my house all the time and poop and pee on my yard. I don't say anything. I just clean it up and toss the trash.

They also use my garbage bins from time to time, and I've had to clean it up, but I've never said anything about it. To be honest, that stuff never bothers me. I think I tolerate a lot from them and I'm not the type to hold grudges with friends or neighbors. They were wonderful neighbors prior to this event, and I hope they get over this soon...
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Postby dodecahedron on Sun Jul 13, 2003 5:47 pm

hey, UALOne, you're a fine guy.
i don't think i would have gone to so much trouble as you did to try to appease them.
you did everything that could be expected under the circumstances and way beyond IMO. if they can't deal with it, too bad, mainly for them.

take it easy now, there's really nothing more you can do about this.
let's hope your neighbours settle down.
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Postby UALOneKPlus on Sun Jul 13, 2003 5:55 pm

dodecahedron wrote:hey, UALOne, you're a fine guy.
i don't think i would have gone to so much trouble as you did to try to appease them.
you did everything that could be expected under the circumstances and way beyond IMO. if they can't deal with it, too bad, mainly for them.

take it easy now, there's really nothing more you can do about this.
let's hope your neighbours settle down.


Thanks a lot for your kind words. This really really helps a LOT...
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Postby Ian on Sun Jul 13, 2003 10:04 pm

UALOneKPlus, you can be my neighbor anyday :D
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Postby UALOneKPlus on Sun Jul 13, 2003 10:23 pm

Ian wrote:UALOneKPlus, you can be my neighbor anyday :D


Thanks Ian! I would love to :lol:

I'd be coming over to see your latest benchmarks, and going out to buy the latest gadgets for you to review!!! :wink:
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Postby cd pirate on Wed Jul 16, 2003 8:26 am

UAone, how old are these neighbours of yours?
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Postby UALOneKPlus on Wed Jul 16, 2003 2:58 pm

They are in their late 30's...
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Postby VEFF on Wed Jul 16, 2003 4:07 pm

I think you handled the situation very well, UALOneKPlus.
It was an accident, and you offered to rectify the resulting problem(s).

This is only a theory, and I might be completely wrong, but maybe the couple is going through a rough time right now (family death, illness, stress, relationship problems or who knows what...), and this incident just added to it, none of which is your fault.
I say this, because you said you had a (pretty) good (working) relationship with them in the past, and it seems they are being unreasonable this time by not accepting your apology and offer to make everything look as good as new.

Accidents happen. As you said, it isn't as if the damage is permanent.
If you didn't offer to clean up the mess and apologize, I could understand their behavior. However, you made sure to offer to make things right,
as a good neighboor would.
If they were good neighbors they would be more understanding, especially since none of this was intentional...

I wonder how they would react if something more serious happened...
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