Mystery Bin! What to Do When an Unknown Skip Bin Is Placed Outside Your Home

A skip bin sitting on a driveway or on the street outside a home is a fairly common sight in the average Australian suburb. And yet it can come as quite a surprise to arrive home to find a skip bin outside your property when you haven't in fact hired one. It's unlikely to be a case of the bin having been delivered to the wrong address, and chances are that it was put in what was considered to be the right place. But what exactly should you do if this was to happen to you?

Safety Factors

It might be that your neighbour has rented the skip bin and has opted to place it on the street rather than on their property. It might encroach onto the front of your property if there was insufficient room directly outside your neighbour's home, or if your property is at the border to a change in parking restrictions. You might be at the edge of a no stopping or no parking zone, for instance. It's not a given that you will be informed of the bin's placement unless your neighbour has done so themselves. It might be possible that not every eventuality will have been considered either. While the skip bin company will not have positioned the bin in a way that will obviously impede access to your driveway, there might be other factors. Is your line of sight affected, as in, is the bin blocking your view of oncoming traffic when accessing your driveway? Such an issue will mean that the bin will need to be moved. But how can you arrange this when you're not the hirer?

Your First Step

If it's obvious which neighbour has rented the skip bin, then speak with them directly. If this is not possible for whatever reason, then examine the bin itself. Is the name of the skip bin company recorded anywhere on the bin? You can contact them and explain the situation. The bin remains their property, and indeed, their liability, so they should be happy to help you to find a solution. It might be that collection of the bin is imminent anyway, and so the issue will soon be resolved. But what about when no information is recorded on the bin, and you're unable to determine which of your neighbours is the hirer?

Speaking to Your City Council

Contact your local city council. Skip bins cannot simply be deposited on the street (or on a nature strip) without permission. The council can check the details of the permit and contact the hirer or the bin company to request a resolution. Such a resolution will be minor in any case, and it only involves a slight repositioning of the bin. It might also be the case that the bin was put there by the council themselves, in preparation for upcoming local civil works. If this is the case, repositioning of the bin to a safer spot becomes the council's responsibility.

If a skip bin is deposited outside your home in a position that is in fact a safety issue, it's important to know what to do.