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Solving Problems With Your Neighbors

Fix a rift with a neighboring business without your lawyer.

This story appears in the October 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

A neighboring business may affect yours in ways you'd never expected. Whether it's a conflict over customer parking, a steady stream of delivery trucks that block your driveway or a restaurant venting its kitchen odors your way, neighboring businesses can drive away your customers and cause you endless aggravation.

You might be able to work it out just by talking to the owners of the problem business--but they may be adamant that what happens on their property is their business. You could check your lease and discuss the conflict with your landlord. You might even appeal to the city for help with code enforcement. But despite your best efforts to resolve the problem diplomatically, sometimes you can't.

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