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Tell me all about living on a corner lot please.


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We have tons of yard space but my dogs also have tons to bark at with the people walking by........I live in a neighborhood that can be foot traffic heavy because we have a city bus stop one street over both to the south and to the west though

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I’ve lived on two. Yard was bigger than neighbors, but we also had a problem with people “cornering it” on purpose and ruining the lawn. We had to fix that several times. 

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You could hav set back issues with zoning for fences or other things as you lot would have 2 street (fronts) sides, one back side and one side side vs the normal 2 sides street/front and a back.

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We lived on a corner lot.

More front yard, but that also meant to had to be more careful to mow, edge as we had an HOA.
Sometimes people drove over part of yard in road corner. (???)
A couple of times we had a broken beer bottle in yard (maybe from people with issue above?)
If streets are busy (ours were not), road noise on two sides of house = harder to find good bedroom for light sleepers. 
More yard for dog walkers to let their dogs use and forget to pick up any leavings.

Nothing super bad, but I'd prefer not to live on a corner again.  

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We live on a corner lot.  The biggest thing is that you need to landscape for privacy if you are going to use the side yard.  If you have littles you need to also be a bit careful about cars whipping around the corner.  Corner houses are statistically more likely to be broken into.  Our house is designed with no doors or windows on the weak side.  It sounds like you already have a house on the lot.  If that is the case make sure there are good window locks plus the peg style security locks on the windows.  If there is a door on the weak side be sure you buy the most security you can in the door and lock set.  Consider lighting improvements as well.  It would be good to have a fence around the backyard so that the back of the house doesn't have a quick getaway out to the weak side of the house.

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Check your local codes. We discovered that officially we do not have a back yard due to being on a corner lot. That really limits what we are allowed to do as far as fencing, hedges, etc. And yes, you can't get away without mowing/edging because it will be noticed. 

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Also, we bought the house and moved in during early summer. We didn't realize that our corner was the middle/high school bus stop. As a result, our tree tends to sprout skateboards, the occasional sweater or sweatshirt, and maybe a bike or two, and we tend to get trash, too. Not nearly as likely to be the case mid-block. 

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I live on a large corner lot in the country. We don't really have issues with people whipping around the corner. First, we don't get a lot of traffic, and second, the side road comes up to a hill on both sides of the main road, with stop signs. We have a ditch that runs along the side road. We do have several trees along the side road, which gives some privacy to the house. The house has a very tiny side yard on that side and not much front yard, as it sits assymetrically on the lot. We have a huge back/other side yard though. No HOA, and nobody cares what we do. The township mows along the ditch side, but DH has to trim the trees near the stop sign every so often, which is NBD. We have no doors on the side yard, but we also live in a very low crime area, and also, tbh, I have an old farmhouse, and there are much newer and nicer houses to break into on the street. 

 

Probably the only real thing I wish were different is that there is a little lack of privacy. We have a small area right around part of the house fenced in, but it is too big (nearly 3 acres) fence in the entire thing, and the side road trees stop just a bit beyond the house, so the back yard area is visible to anyone coming up that road. (But so are our neighbors' yards, and the side road is very visible from the kitchen too.) It really hasn't been that big of a deal. 

 

The buses do stop at our corner, but they come from the opposite direction and so stop more across the main street than on our side. Haven't had an issue with anyone leaving stuff on our property -- that would be annoying. 

Edited by happypamama
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We’ve been on a corner lot since January. There is a “line of sight” easement that prevents us from fencing the back, side and front in a straight line if we fence up to that easement. The purpose of that easement is so that people at the corners have a clear view of oncoming traffic and pedestrians on the sidewalks. We knew about the easement when we chose the lot and since we didn’t plan to fence, it doesn’t bother us. Others on the corner lots have fenced and we think it looks weird, but each to his own. We haven’t had any issues with neighbors or anything & we have no regrets. 

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I'm not on a corner lot but I once lived on one in the same neighborhood,.  It was a lot of yard to take care of for show and much smaller non-public family spaces.  In this area a corner lot will have a little bit more land, but still a smaller back yard area you're allowed to fence in.  I don't get the appeal at all unless you enjoy gardening or just like having pretty areas that don't get disturbed by your kids. Our neighborhood was quiet, so the kids did end up playing in the front yard a lot when they were little.  I had to supervise because my oldest was 4 at the time.  We lived there about a year.  

I do see how someone could get into having all of that public canvas for your gardening expense and effort. They LOOK really nice, but it almost seems that the neighborhood benefits at the expense of the corner lot inhabitants. Just last year, 4 corner lots had a corner of their yard annexed to make the world's smallest roundabout.  I still don't get why that's there.  If your corner lot is on a cross street there will be more accidents in front of your house.

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We have a corner lot. My favorite story is when my youngest was about 9 one fall, and as we were homeschooling, we were able to take a break during the day to rake up the leaves before trash pick up the next day (if you rake them into piles in the street, they get picked up). As we were raking, she said, "Aren't we lucky to live on a corner lot? We have way more leaves to rake!"

We don't experience the negatives voiced in many posts above--no one drives over the corner, no crazy fast drivers, no weird rules on fences. We have a nice, fenced, private, big-for-this-neighborhood backyard. The other plus to a corner lot is you don't feel hemmed in on both sides. Many of the lots in this neighborhood are pretty skinny, and they built the houses as close as possible. We don't have that claustrophobic, squished feeling. The house on the one side was built as close to the lot line as allowed, but not much window-wise on that side of the house. Just glad we don't have that same thing on the other side.

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Our rental is on a corner lot. Big front yard, twice as much landscaping. No one jumps the curve because it’s at least 5-6” high and has a storm drain. Quiet neighborhood with friendly people. Fencing the back could be a little tricky because it adjoins the neighbor’s front yard but it could be done tastefully. We have an extra wide parking pad (3 cars wide) for a two car side loading garage. I like that. I landscaped the other street facing side myself b/c the builder didn’t. I like it. The backyard is still big enough for a pool if we want to add one when we retire.

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1 hour ago, happypamama said:

I live on a large corner lot in the country. We don't really have issues with people whipping around the corner. First, we don't get a lot of traffic, and second, the side road comes up to a hill on both sides of the main road, with stop signs. We have a ditch that runs along the side road. We do have several trees along the side road, which gives some privacy to the house. The house has a very tiny side yard on that side and not much front yard, as it sits assymetrically on the lot. We have a huge back/other side yard though. No HOA, and nobody cares what we do. The township mows along the ditch side, but DH has to trim the trees near the stop sign every so often, which is NBD. We have no doors on the side yard, but we also live in a very low crime area, and also, tbh, I have an old farmhouse, and there are much newer and nicer houses to break into on the street. 

 

Probably the only real thing I wish were different is that there is a little lack of privacy. We have a small area right around part of the house fenced in, but it is too big (nearly 3 acres) fence in the entire thing, and the side road trees stop just a bit beyond the house, so the back yard area is visible to anyone coming up that road. (But so are our neighbors' yards, and the side road is very visible from the kitchen too.) It really hasn't been that big of a deal. 

 

The buses do stop at our corner, but they come from the opposite direction and so stop more across the main street than on our side. Haven't had an issue with anyone leaving stuff on our property -- that would be annoying. 

You have buses in the country?

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We lived on a corner lot and didn't have any issues with it.  The house was somewhat U-shaped and formed a nice enclosed area, so we had plenty of fenced backyard.  We didn't have much side street traffic (It wasn't a main through street) and the front street was a cul de sac with about 8 or 9 houses on it--so not much traffic.  Things I would check for--how the driveway is positioned (does it back into heavy traffic), are you at the end of the block with a bright street light, traffic light, or stop sign on the corner?  I don't think I would like to have a stop sign at the corner of my front yard.  

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Where I live corner lots have one defined ‘front’ yard, and in that the fence can only be 3 feet tall, max, unless it’s severely set back (losing a lot of yard).  The other ‘side’ is legit for tall fencing, as tall as back yard fencing even though it’s along the sidewalk.  So you don’t necessarily lose that back yard feel.  It’s a good idea to check local zoning as this varies from one place to another, and it is a real bummer to buy something with too high of a fence and have the city catch up with you and make you replace it with a lower one, when you didn’t even know that it was not to code when you bought the place.

I have friends who do urban homesteading on a city corner lot like that.  On their ‘front yard’ side they planted berries on lowish fences at the sidewalk, and then another row up where the ‘fence’ can be taller in the same yard.  It’s a nice approach because you can see through the ‘fences’ but they do form a physical barrier signal.  It’s one of the nicest approaches to having a corner lot that I have seen.  Then along the side of the corner that is not defined as ‘front yard’, they have standard 8 foot fences, very secure, all the way around a large vegetable garden with big raised bed style rows, along one side of the house.  Then behind the house is another section of that big veggie garden fence, with a heavy gate, and that’s where they have a little lawn, some swings, a wading pool, and a coop for their ducks.  They raise ducks and slaughter them for the deep freeze.  They also have a couple of mean geese.  It’s a stunning ecosystem, really.  They let the ducks into the veggie garden about once every day or two, and they preferentially eat bugs, so this is their pesticide program, with a little stray fertilization as well.  They watch carefully, and when the ducks finish the bugs and start eating tender shoots, out they go, back into the back yard itself.  

It is remarkable how much gardening and productivity they get out of that corner lot!  I don’t think they would want it any other way!

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As someone else said, a lot depends on where the corner lot is.  Ours is on a side street with a cul-de-sac.  Not many people go by who don't have a specific reason to go by - ie. they live on our street or are making a delivery on our street.  No one is going across our lawn because the street is low volume and a low speed limit (people are quite careful because we have a lot of young kids on our street).  Also - my yard is elevated from the street - any car trying to cut cross would be running into our low retaining wall.  If I were looking to buy or build, I would look at the neighborhood more than the kind of lot.  Or at least the kind of lot would be secondary to the neighborhood. 

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I grew up in a house on a corner lot, and our last house was on a corner lot in a subdivision. We didn't have any issues or complaints. I agree that it really depends on the neighborhood. I wouldn't want one if the intersection was a busy one, but a house on any busy street would be a deal breaker for me.

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One of the houses I lived in growing up was a corner lot in a subdivision.  The only thing I remember being an issue (I was a teen, so keep that in mind) was that the majority of our yard was the part that ran from our house to the corner. So that is where the neighborhood kids would play football, etc.  If you had small children, that might be an issue because you didn't have a clear line of sight from other places in the house to the side yard. Our back yard was tiny and we ended up putting in a pool which meant all of the outdoor play happened in the side yard on the corner.  We didn't have a lot of traffic in the sub. I don't remember people driving over the corner, etc. but as a teenager, I don't know if I would have noticed.  LOL.

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11 hours ago, TechWife said:

We’ve been on a corner lot since January. There is a “line of sight” easement that prevents us from fencing the back, side and front in a straight line if we fence up to that easement. The purpose of that easement is so that people at the corners have a clear view of oncoming traffic and pedestrians on the sidewalks. We knew about the easement when we chose the lot and since we didn’t plan to fence, it doesn’t bother us. Others on the corner lots have fenced and we think it looks weird, but each to his own. We haven’t had any issues with neighbors or anything & we have no regrets. 

I wish this was enforced on my street.   A house on the corner put up a tall fence.   It makes it impossible to see when you are stopped there and trto turn onto the cross street.   And it is on a busy intersection too.  I have been almost hit a few times.

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I live on a corner lot on a very steep hill,  There are giant naturally occuring boulders and trees at the corner and because it is so steep and continues to be a steep street as it turns the corner (it is an L shaped street where I live), no one jumps the curb.  We have lived here 9 years.  We have no privacy in the side yard but really few people drive up here.  There are only 6 more houses on the street though there is another street we can leave from too that ends at our street down the hill the other way- and some of those people occasionally come this way and of course, so does trash, mail, etc.

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Ours is a lot of extra yard to maintain.  It wasn't bad when the boys lived here and yard work was divided up now it's just my husband and I doing the whole thing.  There's a side walk then more grass to edge and mow.  We wanted the large, flat, fenced back yard but didn't consider all the extra work of The corner lot. The corner was also the bus stop for our   first 12 years here so that was a good/bad thing.  We would not choose a corner lot if we had to do it over again.

Edited by lynn
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We live on a corner lot. Our house is an L-shaped rancher which along with a fence across the back yard, makes for privacy in the back yard. Both streets are very quiet (very few cars in a day) which helps as well.

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We live on a corner lot on a very steep hill in a small city neighborhood.  The houses were built well before cars hit the scene so the lots are small and the houses are close together.  Being on the corner, we have one less house right up close to us, so that is nice.  And our lot is significantly larger than most.  There is less privacy and more road noise.  We have double the salt and gravel to remove from the edge of the yard after our 6-month snow season ends....so much so that we have to hire someone to clean it up.  The corner is somewhat busy during the day so backing out of our driveway requires care.  We don't have a fence so I don't know how that works.  Half of the people who live around us have junk cars and trash all over their yards and do not mow their lawns so any "landscaping" we ever do is above and beyond the norm anyway.  It was a bit stressful when dd was a small child.  We trained her well but I always had to keep a very close eye any time she had friends over.  For us, the pros outweigh the cons.

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We lived on a corner lot in a subdivision. A big con is double the amount of sidewalk to edge. Also, we had a side basement door on that side of the house. I hated that. We didn't have pets but I imagine there would have been a lot of barking as people walked by on the sidewalk.

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I forgot, we do have "lawn ornaments" courtesy of the town. We have a stop sign, a light pole and the street rain runoff drain is right in front of the house. None of this has caused an issue, although the drain sometimes gets blocked by something big that works its way down from one of the lots under construction. The construction company will come pull it out if we call them. Most of the time we do it ourselves if we see if before it rains. The man who takes care of our lawn uses his week wacker around the stuff on posts.

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My parents live on a corner lot. Their garage is angled so you can drive into it from either street. They have garage doors on both sides. (So, it's kind of like a tunnel if you have both doors open) My mom really likes it. If you don't want to, you never have to back up!

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On 8/11/2020 at 2:05 PM, KungFuPanda said:

If you're in a neighborhood with sidewalks and snow it doubles your sidewalk shoveling responsibilities.

Yup this--thankfully, we didn't have sidewalks on both sides of the corner lot, but we had a lot extra.  It was also a pain to keep the sidewalk cleared where the snowplow went through on the crosswalk.  The people who had two sides of sidewalks on the corner lot to take care of?  That was a lot more work.

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