Q: Hello, We just moved to a new house with a pool and seem to have a little issue with the neighbor and their kids wanting (expecting) to be able to come over and use it. We work 7 days a week in the summer and want to be able to use our pool and backyard in private. There is a girl about the same age as our daughter that seems to be using her to get in both our pool and hot tub. I want a polite solution before we end up with tensions with our neighbors. I think the previous owners let them swim, but we are not willing to carry on that tradition.
A: This can be a sticky issue, and apparently is, but it requires some direct communication. Simply tell them that you have a liability issue with people using the pool when you aren’t home so have to ask them to not enter it or your yard during those times, and that when you do get home from work it is your mode of relaxation and not a time you want to have to be social. However, you can say, you would be delighted to have them have a swim occasionally and will issue invitations when those times occur. They really can’t get huffy over being asked to respect your property and privacy, even if they are used to carte blanche from the former owners. They need to chalk it up to being lucky before, and find somewhere else to go now. This is not unreasonable of you at all.