I was schooled in architecture and construction and there are generally two
predominate points of view when building. A. How can I get the most bang for
my buck. B. How will my project affect the surroundings. As a general rule
most tend to gravitate towards 'A'.Citizen land ownership
has a lot of responsibilities that come with it. I don't like people;
especially the government, telling me what I can do with my property. I paid
for it and I continue to pay taxes for it. Once these two elements are altered,
then those who pay the bills should have more say. I try to be responsible and
not deliberately cause my neighbors grief while at the same time using my
property in the way that meets my needs.Zoning codes apparently
allowed the owner to build what is being built. It would have been nice if more
consideration had been extended to those who would be effected. We may have a
right to build what we want, but its not always worth the grief that results
when we aggravate the neighbors. Good neighbors are vital to earn and keep.
My Dad used to say that the definition of Environmentalist is the guy who built
his cabin on the lake first.
I really doubt that the person building the large, new home, would feel the same
as he does now if somebody built a proportionally LARGER home than his right
between his new home and the mountain view, ie, if he had done to him what
he's doing to his neighbors right now.Just because something is
"legal" doesn't make it "right".
Just plant a row of arborvitaes on the back fence line. They are evergreen,
grow quickly, and return your privacy. And if they grow tall enough,
they'll block the taller neighbor's view and there's nothing they
can do about it. Just saying....
What a ridiculous over-reaction. My house is also situated in the foothills, and
the home behind ours towers over us, severely limiting backyard privacy. Our
master bedroom also is in the rear of the house, so...we planted trees across
the rear property line. Never at any time did I think my good neighbors needed
to consider my layout in their home-design plans. If these put-upon homeowners
were really that concerned, then they might have done better to allocate that
$150k to the purchase of the undeveloped lot, then sell it under their own
terms. If you want to dictate how a property is managed, make sure you're
the owner. Otherwise, it is none of your business.
I find it interesting that a two-story home is considered a
"monstrosity." The problem in Utah is systemic. That problem is that
too many people are champagne drinkers on a beer budget. The lots are small and
the homes are basic. Hoping and praying that the owner of a backyard lot builds
a one story home so you can keep your view is selfish in its own right. If you
want an unobstructed view, either buy a larger lot or buy the adjacent lot
yourself. My neighbors behind my lot built homes that look out over my roof for
a fabulous view; however, I now live in a fishbowl where everyone can see into
my yard. Well, I also exercised my individual property rights in response. I
planted all kinds of tall trees in the back of my yard. This provides the much
needed privacy and better yet, it eliminated their view. I guess anything goes
in love and war.
The people below knew that sometime someone was going to build there. If they
did not think of that then here is the consequences for not thinking it through.
Even a rambler would block the view being on that hill. Here in
Gilbert people built next to a large track of land that was slated to be a power
plant (20 years earlier). For years it did not go in. Then the need was there
and the Power plant started to be built. Now all of these people were informed
as it was a required disclosure when they built or bought their homes. So when
it finally went in they all had major issues. Hello you knew but never thought
it through. It is there today and the power company did a fantastic job hiding
it. Oh the politics that went with that project. Same with the Mesa Gateway
airport. Was quiet for years but it has picked up a lot and now people are
complaining. Again disclosure and common sense. If you live by an airport you
will get airplanes. Airplanes make noise. Like it or not some things
we have to live with.
In retrospect, the Johnsons should have bought the lot in Layton rather than the
one in Kaysville. Live and learn, I guess.
Many people in our community are living paycheck to paycheck. They either rent
or struggle to make a mortgage payment. I drive a ten your old truck with
185000 miles that I pray never breaks down because I cannot afford to replace
it. I am not complaining. This is not a news story to me. I am sick of tired
of people whining about property values. Be grateful for your abundance of
material possessions. They are all temporary.
from the pictures there are plenty of moutains to the right and left of the
house being built. So you have to glance a little either way but there are still
great views even from the picture.
Hmmmm. Let's see here. Thirty years ago we built with a beautiful slope
behind us where our children would ski down to our patio in the winter. There
was a gorgeous view of the mountains. Now, there are houses blocking
everything. The new people bought their lots just as I did. I think I ruined
the view for the folks below me many years ago. It is the way it is! If
someone is within code you have no right to dictate how they build because of
your whims! Really?????
I think I was misunderstood just a bit. And understandably.I
understand the builders of the new home. They have every right to do it if it
meets code. It's unfortunate that zoning between two cities isn't
planned better, but they have the right.My only concern is that when
someone has a hard time with this, we have no place judging them for it, which
is what several people are doing on here. None of us know how we'd react in
that situation and in general, it's very easy to criticize someone, go
through the same thing, then sympathize. Most of us have had such
misunderstandings in our life at some point.All of us have judged
where we shouldn't, so all of us should learn that lesson... that we
shouldn't.Disagree, fine. But the comments on here are
condescending and rude towards this family. If there is anything I'll
resist, it isn't different views... it's people being rude about it.
It does nothing good and quite frankly it's much more embarrassing and
despicable than what anyone could rightfully say about this family. End of
I read the story of that man whose family was killed by a drunk driver and I
thought "man, that is tragic." But I was wrong. Not having a view of
the mountains is truly tragic.
DisneyMomThe homeowners ttempted to buy the lot and leave it vacant,
but that was not allowable. The land was zoned for housing only, and Layton
City refused to change.Layton is increasingly just "awful".
We have a rotting McMansion in our neighborhood, that's 7 years old and
unfinished. Layton City should never have allowed it in the first place, as
is. But "property rights" prevailed. It was finally bought in a
distress sale by people who obviously cannot afford to finish a 4500 sf
three-level home in the center of a 1970s subdivision.Now everyone
is suffering, including the family being pushed around by the new neighbors.What if someone found an old access easemen on your property, and instead of
just driving over your lawn, they scraped it out, threw down rocks and left it
as weeds.Then, they drove huge trucks over it ... so heavy that sidewalks
on both sides of the street have been crushed.All that is life in
I can't believe how often this sort of thing happens-- probably everywhere
but because I live here this is where I notice it. If you want to keep the
view, buy the lot. If there are lots next to you that have a higher elevation,
chances are any house built will sit higher (short of being subterranean). If
you want those few deer to keep feeding on the vacant land next to yours, buy it
so it stays undeveloped. If you want an access road to the back half of your 5
acres through your neighbor's land, offer to pay market value for it.
These are simple principles in a market economy. Some want to talk about being
considerate to those already living there, but what about the guy who owns
perfectly good property and everyone thinks they can tell him what he can do
with it? If you want a say, buy the land yourself.
All good things must come to an end.I hope the Johnsons can move
along and put things in perspective. Plant a large beautiful tree.
(Goodness, is this part of the "keeping up with the Jones'
that is a little too prevalent in Zion?)
First-World problem...this is "news"? Seriously, people.
Hate to tell you this, folks, and it's been a major debate in California
for years... but while it may affect a perceived property value, a view can NOT
be guaranteed or be bought/paid for!
People are strange, they are constantly angered by trivial things, but on a
major matter like totally wasting their lives, they hardly seem to notice. The
size and scope of your neighbors home is of no consequence in your life. Be
happy, appreciate your amazing fortune to be where you are, and if it suits you
reach out to those who are in need. I would imagine that 99% of the world be
thrilled to live in that home even with the "eyesore" behind it.
There got to be a law of people who drive BIG CARS that blocking other drivers
with their tiny cars. Come on get a life.
OH my. How I wish more of us only had that kind of problem. Life would be bliss.
Sorry Utah that you have such stressing problems. We used to have mountains in
Nebraska but they blocked our view of the plains so we had them removed.
Maybe you should have built out in the middle of a field. They have a right to
build the house. You should have thought ahead and built a tall house, if you
wanted the view. dah Hum vacant lot behind me. Hope no one ever builds.
I currently live across the street from a vacant lot that gives me unobstructed
views of the valley and mountain range. That could easily change when somebody
chooses to build there. Will I miss the unobstructed view when that happens?
Yes. I understand, however, that I will eventually lose what I currently enjoy.
I agree with the comments that the only way to secure view and other air rights
is to acquire enough property or the type of property that will ensure it.
Knowing that a vacant lot exists 50 feet higher than your property is a recipe
for this type of result.But the homeowner needs to make lemonade
from the lemons. The higher home next door will provide wonderful shade to the
back yard. As noted, as long as covenants do not prohibit this, trees can be
planted along the boundary to reach to the sky and provide privacy and beauty.
We have a view of downtown Salt Lake in the wintertime, when the
leaves fall off the trees that otherwise block our view. This is what we get
when we choose to live in a City close to amenities. I know some five acre lots
in West Jordan with stunning views of the Oquirrh and Wasatch Mountains that
would guaranty a home placement opportunity that could not be obstructed. On
the other hand, you would also get to say hi to the horses, cows and pigs living
We had a very nice view of the mountains. We would sit out on the porch and
relax enjoying the view. We have a playhouse across the street that while it is
great it has created a mess for us. It is historic and puts on great plays.
Problem is they decided they needed storage room so they built an adjacent
building. Ok. They build a monstrosity that completely blocks the view, which
was not necessary if they had given thought and reoriented the building. Not
only is it huge, destroying the view, it is faced with unpainted waferboard. Now
that is a pretty sight indeed. It has been that way now for at least three
years. We no longer sit on the front porch. We feel like we are in an industrial
zone. It does no good to complain. This is a small town and does as it likes
which is ok generally. Their story and ours are much too common and are
almost always brought on by people not considering other people. They just dont
care and that is endemic in our society.
I saw some additional photo's over on KSL. What is not accurately
represented here is the fact that the lot in back of these folks is considerably
higher, you'll notice the back yard slopes up. The problem is that these
people cannot enforce a height restriction on the neighboring property using the
existing grade of their home. That's life in the mountains. Chances are
someone else will always be higher up on the hill. So ya, the proper things for
these folks to have done to preserve their view would have been to purchase the
property. Oh and the loss of property values argument is laughable. When the
appraiser comes to your house does he/she walk around it and assess the view?
No, they look at comparables, square footages, upgrades within the home (counter
tops flooring, etc). The fact that a home in the back might tower over your
backyard might detract some from buying it is a valid point, but proving dropped
home value would be near impossible. Good luck.
This sort of thing also causes a great deal of grief for those on America's
coastlines. Those living in fabulous ocean views homes frequently deal with
this. It began in the 1960s when people began building 3 story homes. People
with the one story homes not only lost their ocean view, but the sunshine. It
has become a normal every day issue, that city government has no control over.
Even if they spent millions on their homes, residents/neighbors have realized
they must live and let live.
@I know it. I Live it. I Love it. As we all know money rules every
aspect of life in Utah. The City of Layton has shown over the years they will
let anyone build whatever they want as long as the pay for the permits and
increases the city coffers. As a previous resident of Layton, I am not shocked.
Ultimately it comes down to the social prevalence in Utah, one is judges by
one's possessions, and a 4000+ sqft house ranks among one of the things
everyone tries to achieve to elevate their status in the community.
marxist - "..if somebody stuck a high rise behind his Alpine McMansion"
then he would deserve what he got. Because he didn't check to understand,
before he built his Alpine McMansion, that zoning laws allowed the highrise to
be built. But I think that is one of the reasons he chose to build/buy in
Alpine, because zoning laws prohibit it. I'm stunned that you, of all
people, are standing up for the people who want to deny a simple homeowner his
rights granted by the laws of the land. I thought you were on the side of the
common man, not on the side of the herd mentality that only wants what they
want, not what is best for the community. Zoning laws are enacted by elected
officials - elected by the people - and if the people don't like it there
is a due process to change it. But whining and crying in the newspaper will not
Must be a really slow news day, let's see we have a mother that was asked
to leave a cafe, a home owner who lost their view of the mountains, and a
football program which already celebrates too much after every play wanting to
celebrate even more. That about covers it. Definitely a slow news day at the DN.
The people behind me built a tall tower-house to get the view over the top of my
house, so we planted a bunch of trees so they can't see into every room in
the house like it's a fishbowl. I don't notice them unless their dog
barks at 3 am, and they still have the blinding sun streaming in first thing
each morning since they oriented their tower view home to maximize it. Win-win!
"Very tragic for our family"?!First world problems,
dear--merely first world problems.Take your children to see some
third world families and how they live. Gain some perspective. Do
some good for other people, instead of whining about a non-issue. Thank
God every day you have a house.This is embarrassing.
While I don't think "tragic" is the appropriate word (I usually
save that one for death), I do agree that it would be frustrating to be in this
situation. I, for one, put a high value on my privacy and personal space. In
this situation, I would most likely move as well.
I don't think this situation calls for sarcasm. I agree with the homeowners
who have lost their view of the mountains. Many times they choose an area so
they can have the gorgeous view of our Utah mountains. Evidently the new owners
never considered anyone's feelings but their own. It would be interesting
how they would react if the shoe was on the other foot.
The trees block my view of the sky! Sheesh people get a grip! I know you
don't stand outside staring at the mountains all day. You are blessed to
live in an area where you are surrounded by mountains. We were just out there
for a visit and they were everywhere!
This is the pot calling the kettle black. A Brighton Homes Subdivision went in
Kaysville near Gailey Park. Those homes tower over the homes in the Happy Homes
Subdivision. Those homes can stare into the yards and windows of the smaller
homes. If Hiatt wants to protest he better make sure he does so in a fair way to
all Kaysville residents.
I know it, I live it...I don't think The Utah Republican was being rude,
he/she was just pointing out the absurdity of the comments made in the article.
Or perhaps it was the naiveté of the residents of this neighborhood. Why
would someone assume that they could maintain a million dollar view for
perpetuity unless the vacant land allowing that view was situated such such that
no one could build a house blocking the view? Or, as Disney Mom points out,
they purchased the land themselves. The photo in the article illustrates that
even a single story house would block the view of the mountain. The second
story of that house mostly blocks blue sky. The property is in an adjacent
city, with different zoning laws. Why wouldn't someone understand that
before they invested $150,000 in landscaping upgrades based on the fact that the
view would always be there. And now, having failed to do their due diligence in
these matters, why should they assume that something can be done to change the
law. Actually, I've changed my mind, this is not naiveté, it is just
It sounds like their home had a vacant lot behind it. Those things can always
change. Especially on the the border. The lot behind them looks to
be on a higher incline, and two story home besides. It may hinder
sale of their home, but values are based in zip code and square feet. Upgrades
aren't considered anymore in thei very bizarre housing market. Don't
matter if you have expensive floors and the rest of the block has carpet. Doesnt
matter if you have a new kitchen. Square feet and zip code are all that matter
It's interesting how everyone is pro-property rights in a libertarian way,
until it directly affects their own personal interests.I may be
going out on a limb here--a limb safely behind any landscaping setbacks--but I
wonder if last year, before the offending house was ever designed, if the
soon-to-be-offended family and neighbors were asked what they felt about
property rights and governments telling them what they could or could not build
on their own land, they would have probably screamed in unison that the govt
better not tell them what to do, because this is America, and it's their
God-given libertarian right to do whatever they feel is in their own best
interest. Sounds to me like a typical Utah answer.Now they want
help, crying to their gubbermint officials, because the next town over is more
libertarian and loose in the zoning laws, allowing a house to legally loom over
their property. Can't have it both ways. Do you believe in hands-off
libertarianism only when it suits you, for you and your kin, but not for others?
Well, Alpine I believe has the highest median income in the state of Utah.
Where is the guy from Alpine putting his emphasis? Well, frankly, I'm
ashamed of him. Also, I wonder how'd he like it if somebody stuck a high
rise behind his Alpine McMansion?
First world problems "tragic"
The home being built meets city zoning ordinances. If a homeowner is so
concerned what might be built behind their home - buy the property. Then you can
be sure no one blocks your view! No whining!
The Utah Republican,Please, I will do you the respect of asking
kindly. Please, as a fellow Utahn, show a little more compassion and respect to
your fellow Utahns. There is no good thing that will ever come from treating
others with such judgement and condemnation.It's very easy to
judge someone else when they live a different life than you do. You don't
know these people, their past, and who they are. You and I both have no right to
judge them.1) By decreasing their property value, this affects them
directly. Pretending it doesn't is a lie.2) If you disagree, fine.
Post your address to the world and invite everyone to come over at 3:00 AM with
loud-speaker PA systems and blast your ears... every single night for the rest
of your life.Surely that is a fair comparison to an eye sore. But
then again, you might want to put your treasures in a better place than in your
beauty sleep.I think the sound would resonate quite nicely off those
Alpine mountains. I imagine you have a great view too. Enjoying it?
So ... "Heaven on earth" is determined by how close and tall your
neighbor's house is? Really? “It’s
just been a very, very tragic thing for our family,”Really?Maybe it would be better to put your treasures in a better place than in
house and yard upgrades. I can think of a few good causes. How about an
education or micro-loan program for people who live in the favelas, or in
Soweto?Dang I'm ashamed of Utah tonight.