Neighborhood Mediation

Neighborhood disputes can be particularly contentious and sometimes it might seem like there is no way to resolve them. It could be a dispute between an HOA and a member or it could be just between two neighbors.

Typical examples might be:
  • An HOA is trying to collect late fees from a homeowner, but the homeowner feels he is being charged unjustly.
  • A landlord and tenant disagree over cleaning and damage charges deducted from a security deposit.
  • A neighbor's dog barks all night long and has also caused damage to a neighbors fence.

    In the last 20 years, mediation has been used more and more to settle neighborhood disputes like the ones described above.

    Mediation is a structured and organized process that can help people who are having a dispute come to a mutually acceptable agreement. The mediator is usually a trained neutral third party who helps the parties to clarify their issues, understand each other's perspective, and guide them to a final agreement of their own making.

    One of the distinct advantages of mediation is that the effected parties retain control over the outcome of the matter. Instead of a judge, hearing examiner, or other third-party decide the matter, in mediation, it is the parties who decide.

    Finally, mediation can resolve the matter faster and at significantly less costs than would litigation in the courts or an administrative proceeding

    Many cities around the country offer free mediation services. Also for more information on solving neighborhood disputes, take a look at these two articles in our Neighborhood Resource Guide. The first one is about Neighborhood Mediation and the second one is about Neighborhood Dispute Resolution.