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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm asking for opinions because it wouldn't be a big deal to me if the situation was reversed.<br><br>
Our neighbours have installed a big swing set in their backyard. Their yard, our yard and our neighbours on the other side's yard are all one big stretch of land w/o fencing or any other clear demarcation. When this neighbour was builiding his swing he mentioned in chitchat that our kids are welcome to play on it. His kids are 2yo and a newborn. The swing is way too big for them to enjoy so they only rarely use it (of course they'll use it more and more as their kids gets older). So now that the weather is nice my kids (4yo and 13mo) ask to play on it sometimes. If the neighbours are out we always ask them if it's okay. If I see their daughter playing on there I don't let my ds1 use it so as not to hamper their time (the kids aren't friends or anything owing to difference in ages). But if they aren't there in the backyard, or maybe even home, what's the etiquette? Can I let ds1 play on the set? I have a couple of times already but can't shake a niggling feeling.<br><br>
OTOH, it's just a swing set so not like it'll wear down or anything. OTOH, it *is* their property. Since I wouldn't have problems with young kids playing in my yard if I had something enticing (as long as I don't have to be responsible for them), please give me your opinion.
 

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I would suggest talking to your neighbor. Some people would be fine with it, and some would be really angry.<br><br>
So to protect yourself from future hassles you can just make things easy for you all and just ask them.<br><br>
The worst they could say is no, but at least you would know.<br><br>
we wouldn't want someone elses children playing on our kids equitment if we're not home. I would be worried if someone got hurt. This is a sue happy time we live in and I would be afread of being sued over an accident on my property, where technically speaking it is my responsibility.
 

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I wouldn't play on it without asking permission each time. If the owner said it was ok to play when they weren't out, then I would go ahead. Why aren't your kids friends with theirs? I know there's an age difference, but they could still start a friendship. I'd be less inclined to let someone play with my kids' things if they weren't friend.<br><br>
Sorry it's all jumbled, it's early <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Yes, it's probably fine, but I would just ask them if they'd like to lay any "groundrules" for the set. Like, don't let the kids go in their yard before 10 am and after 8pm. Or don't stand up in the swing...our neighbors have a swingset with an open door policy too, and I believe her when she says she really wants the neighborhood kids over to use it anytime, but I also think it's good to suggest to them that they might need to set some limits proactively, so they don't feel overrun or like they've lost privacy.
 

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I'm another one for just having a chit chat with the neighbours about it. Chances are they'll say it's fine, but give them the opportunity to do so. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you. Like I said, the couple times we've talked about it (once when they were installing it and another time when they were out) they have explicitly said "oh, it's fine, he can play". but they haven't said, "oh he can play anytime" ykwim? asking them every time would mean ringing their doorbell every time since we rarely see them out.<br><br>
pp, the kids aren't friends cuz 1) the parents are not out very often, understandably with a newborn and 2) my ds is 4.5, their dd is not-yet 2, likely pre-verbal. they just don't have anything in common. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug">
 

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What a nice neighbor! I wonder if he's going to regret that invite, lol. Not to you, of course; you're obviously considerate and polite. But other kids...? Anyway, for me personally, I'd like someone to ask first, only b/c if my 2 y/o saw kids in his yard he'd want to play, and I'm not always able to supervise.<br><br>
If I were you, I'd tell my kids that they could only go over and ask to play if the other family were out/on it, but that's obviously moot since you're saying the kids are too young to even use it.
 

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Have you thought about installing your own swing set?<br><br>
My dh didn't want to put one in, I finally convinced him and it is the most used piece of equipment we have for my 5 year old (we put it in 2 years ago). Even my ds (11) will sit and swing while hanging out with his friends.<br><br>
-Melanie
 

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I would talk to the neighbour first and clarify their wishes and ground rules.<br><br>
I would also talk to your children and clearly explain those groud rules, and also a few of your own. For example, even if the neighbour says "anytime", if you expect them to ask you first, or to wait until you can go with them. Also, explain that there may be times when they aren't welcome - during their baby's naptime, or if the neighbour's are entertaining, etc.
 

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There are liability issues associated with using someone elses play structure. If I was the neighbor I would want know that you were using it on a regular basis when I was not home.<br><br>
What would happen if the swing broke and your child was hurt? If the neighbor didn't maintain it and something else happened? The neighbor could be held responsible.<br><br>
I only know this because we have friends in the insurance biz and they warned us when we put up a play structure. They actually reccomended we get our neighbors to sign a waver but that was too extreme for us, lol. We just told our neighbors to ask before using.
 

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We also live an area with open yards. We don't allow dd to play on the neighbor's swing set when her friend is not around. (I just feel weird about it honestly--because the parents/older kids are often going in and out of the house, and I feel awkward playing in their yard w/o their kid).<br><br>
My opinion on this would also depend on the age of the kids/the size of the playset. For example, if I had a toddler set for dd, I might not like the older kids in the neighborhood playing on it all the time, because it wouldn't be designed for that kind of use. Nor, if I had a set designed for much older kids, would I necessarily want toddlers playing on it without me around, because of the risk of injury.<br><br>
In any case, I would just talk to the neighbor about ground rules.
 

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I wouldn't feel comfortable with my children playing in someone else's yard on their play structure if I wasn't friends with them or my children weren't friends with their children. I might do it once in a great while, and would ask each and every time, but otherwise it would feel way too weird.
 

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I agree that you need to talk to the neighbor, especially if you only have an open area because your homeowners association agreement forbids fencing. I wouldn't want a kid in my yard when we aren't home and I especially wouldn't want them on a swing set that they could get hurt on. They may feel differently about it though.
 

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Although your neighbor said it's fine, that he can play, he may feel a lot different if/when your DS falls and hurts himself/wakes their newborn/etc. (not saying that will definately happen but it's a strong possibility)<br><br>
If I were you I'd install my own swingset and leave it at that.
 

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I would just get specific permission. Something like, "Hey, (daughter) begs to go play on the set sometimes, do you mind if we use it when you're not home, or should we wait until you're back and run it by you first?"<br><br>
If they were home, I would just always ask. I'd feel strange about playing in their yard with them inside.
 

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Next time you ask to use it, just gently ask how they feel about your kids using it if they aren't available out there to ask. I personally would be fine with it. And we have neighbors who intentionally put a play structure up near the meeting point of a few yards because they wanted it to be easily accessible to lots of kids whenever they wanted to use it, as kind of a gathering spot. But I do know people IRL who would not be comfortable with it as well. The only way to know is to ask.
 

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I wouldn't do it but maybe that's b/c I wouldn't want the neighbor kids in my backyard playing either. If you want something for your kids to play on, than I suggest buying something.<br><br>
I would hate for any child to be hurt on someone's else property.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mamazee</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15465284"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Next time you ask to use it, just gently ask how they feel about your kids using it if they aren't available out there to ask. I personally would be fine with it. And we have neighbors who intentionally put a play structure up near the meeting point of a few yards because they wanted it to be easily accessible to lots of kids whenever they wanted to use it, as kind of a gathering spot. But I do know people IRL who would not be comfortable with it as well. The only way to know is to ask.</div>
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Yup, this. Just ask once if it's okay when they're not out there, mention that you don't want to wake the baby during naptime, whatever. They can let you know their timing restrictions. And I think this goes without saying, but if your child gets injured in any way on their equipment, don't even think about asking for medical costs or such, IMO. This is also why I would be cautious about who I'd share backyard toys with, but if you're all friendly and reasonable, then it could be great. 2 years won't seem like as big a difference when all the children are older, honestly.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Smidge</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15465298"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I wouldn't do it but maybe that's b/c I wouldn't want the neighbor kids in my backyard playing either. If you want something for your kids to play on, than I suggest buying something.<br><br>
I would hate for any child to be hurt on someone's else property.</div>
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totally OT but I love your user name. My youngest dd's nick-name is smidge. (realy name is Sage)
 

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Yes it's rude.... Just dig up some of those old threads where the poster is lamenting about their poor 2 year old inside trying to nap while the neighbor's kids are playing on the swing uninvited.<br><br>
I have an image of the poor mom inside rocking a fussy newborn while the 2 year old begs to go outside. She can't go outside with the fussy newborn and her kid is watching your kid play on the equipment. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
Not to mention the liability of your kid on her property while she isn't even outside.<br><br>
Sorry to shoot you down....... I know it's hard to keep your 4 year old off the swing. I bet your 4 year old is begging hard to go over too!<br><br>
eta - I also remembered the threads where the poor kids can't go out and play because EVERY time they go out - here come the neighborhood kids running over.
 
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