• Ron Wynn

Santa Monica Neighbor Problems – What Are the Biggest Issues?



Hopefully you live in a neighborhood in Santa Monica where there is harmony and caring neighbors, and you will never have to worry about issues that come up unforeseen. Unfortunately, that is not always the case.


Occasionally, our Santa Monica Real Estate Agents say people move into a neighborhood thinking they are going to have a wonderful experience later to find they are living next door to someone who is disrespectful and verbally abusive. In some cases, there isn’t a lot you can do.


The 10 issues that come up most often are the following:

  1. A barking dog. Our Santa Monica Real Estate Agents say it is not uncommon to find you are living next door to a neighbor with a dog who is out of control. What usually happens is the neighbor leaves the dog out and the dog is unhappy and wants to go inside. Perhaps it is too hot for the dog or the dog needs water. Perhaps the dog isn’t well trained or just barks anytime someone walks by or he is cold being left out overnight. There is nothing more frustrating than a dog who keeps you up all night or wakes you up early in the morning.

  2. Neighbors that scream at each other and raise their voices constantly. Equally annoying to a barking dog are people who are constantly fighting or screaming at each other. Perhaps they are not getting along or it is just their lifestyle to be overly loud and obnoxious. There might even be occurrences of domestic violence which can be very frightening. Our Santa Monica Realtors say this should be reported immediately if you are certain there is domestic abuse in play.

  3. Children using obscenities or playing loud music. There are laws about noise levels in certain time periods, depending on your city. For example, our Santa Monica Realtors say that blaring rock bands or amplified music can be a problem for someone looking forward to an afternoon nap or for those with a baby.

  4. Construction. Our Santa Monica Realtors often say this can be very frustrating but must be tolerated as long as the contractor stays within the times they can work within. Also careless trash and carelessness in general can lead to property damage or disturbance to adjacent landscaping. Each city has strict times as to as early one can start and one can work. Our Santa Monica Real Estate Agents suggest you check with the department of building and safety for the exact hours and rules. Bring landscape or property damage issues up as soon as possible to make your neighbor aware.

  5. Neighbors coming onto your property. Most Santa Monica Realtors will tell you there is nothing more frustrating than people trespassing on your property when it is not warranted. For some owners, it isn’t a big deal and for others it is a big infringement on privacy.

  6. Fences and trees. This is a big issue. Our Santa Monica Realtors say fences can cause big fights between neighbors and can cause a problem when a neighbor builds a fence on the property line and blocks you from your driveway or garage. These cases come up often. Sometimes fences are not placed on the property line to make it more convenient; however, this can cause problems later on, which might require a survey. Arguments about “where the property line is” can become the start of a bad, long term neighbor relationship.

  7. Hoarding and old junky cars. When a neighbor starts bringing attention to their home because of an accumulation of what some might call “junk”, our Santa Monica Real Estate Agents say bad feelings can quickly incubate. When a neighbor’s driveway and front porch starts looking like a junk pile, adjacent homeowners can get pretty upset.

  8. Neighbors parking in front of your house. Our Santa Monica Real Estate Agents say parking a truck, boat or camper in front of your house might really become irritating, but sometimes it’s just an ordinary vehicle with no other place to park. If your neighbor has more than 2 cars you might find them conveniently parking in front of your house quite often. Truth is, as long as they move their car regularly, its city owned property and you can only hope the neighbor will be nice when you explain that you need the space for yourself or your guests.

  9. Drainage issues. Our Santa Monica Real Estate Agents state that when your neighbor’s water drains onto your property there could be big problems. Drainage needs to be made proper to not disturb adjacent neighbors. When it persists to be an issue, neighbors can become very angry, often each calling for a lawyer.

  10. Branches and trees. When neighboring trees start to cause damage to your driveway or patio, tempers can flare, especially when a neighbor does not accept responsibility.



There are plenty of other issues that can come up and cause problems with neighbors but these are the most common. Our Santa Monica Real Estate Agents suggest when things come up that you try and discuss with the neighbor in a nice way why it is important that some things can be done.


If the neighbor is respectful, they might just say I’m sorry and immediately correct the problem; if the neighbor is hostile and violating the law, then call the police department if all other nice methods fail.


Hopefully you will not be faced with these issues and you will live harmoniously with your neighbors after they are confronted in a nice, non-threatening way.

For comments, questions, or information, call Ron Wynn at (310) 963-9944 or email: Ron@RonWynn.com

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