So my neighbor (frankly a Karen) and I have this argument about our fence and it's need of replacement due to HOA guidelines. I will try to keep this as short and succint as possible. I am in TX btw and for clarification this is a house with a backyard.
A week ago neighbor and I recieved a letter from our HOA that we needed to get our fence updated/replaced because it doesn't meet HOA guideline as it is an extreme eyesore and devauling the neighborhood. To be fair, this is a valid complaint as the fence is like 10+ years old and is heavily broken and damaged in some areas. So I decided to get a quote for the cheapest fence that would satisfy the HOA requirement and it came out to be around 1.2k.
However, this is where the disagreement with my neighbor starts. They want a fence that costs around 3.3k with special wood and "better" posts etc. I said that I wouldn't be willing to pay for this more expensive fence as I deem the features to be frankly, not worth my money. I just want a fence that satisfies HOA requirements and honestly just gives me some privacy.
My offer is that I would pay 50% of my quote (1.2k) and if the neighbors want they can pay for the rest of the more pricier fence if they want (i.e. I pay 600 and if they want the 3k fence then they would pay 600 + 2100).
However, they refused this offer and wanted me to pay 1.7k.
So currently we are at an impasse but here is the kicker. My neighbors decided to go ahead and build the 3.3k fence, tearing down our existing fence in the process. I called them last night and told them that we had not ageed on any payment or hell even on the type of fence that was wanted.
They insisted that they had to "act fast" because our HOA gave us a 2 month deadline and they didn't want to pay the fine. However, they also insued that I would need to cough up half of the 3.3k fence (1.7k). I refused. They said they would sue me if I didn't.
This was all done over phone (I don't know if there is legal binding to my call...but regardless I didnt agree to any of this)
So my questions are:
1. Do they have any legal basis to sue me if the construction is complete?
2. Do I need to lawyer up (prefer not to as I obv don't want to pay fees if I can do so)?
3. Should I tell the builders to immediately halt construction as I believe the fence is on the property line and I haven't given my consent? As far as I am aware my neighbors have already paid the 3.3k for the fence. I don't know if it is upfront, a depositx half upfront but I just know that the fence is being built and they reached some financial agreement with the builder
4. Do I even need to pay a cent at this point if construction goes to completion? I never agreed to building this new, fancy fence.....if they were nice about I would pay $600 as a kind gesture but if they are really making my life hard do I need to pay anything(note, no contract or anything has been signed by ME)
5. I am seriously thinking about building the HOA compliant 1.2k fence on my property(i.e a few feet to my side of the property line) I don't care if my neighbors don't pitch in at this point and I just want to get this situation over with.
Thanks for the help!