Good fences make good neighbours – and the right fence can really make your yard. These ideas can help you find a style that works for your space. Choose your style:
- Private. A solid-board fence blocks an unattractive view completely, but it also cuts out light and breezes and can make you feel boxed in.
- Semi-private. This style, which can have subtle spacing, louvers or lattice to let in light, is friendly, comfortable, and makes your yard feel bigger.
- Open. Great if you want to enclose your property but don’t want to block it off visually.
Chain-link. Definitely the most cost-effective choice, but not necessarily the most aesthetically pleasing. It’s good for defining boundaries, keeping kids and pets in, and maintaining a sense of openness. If you’ve got a big yard and a small budget, this is the way to go.
Wood. Styles range from split rail and picket fences to board-on-board styles that look great on both sides and offer privacy, yet let in air and light. The downside to wood? It needs regular maintenance to look good over time.
PVC/vinyl. Vinyl fencing looks just like painted wood, but you’ll never need to paint it – all you have to do is clean it once a year.
Iron, aluminum or steel. Use it if you want an open, formal look. Aluminum, which looks like wrought iron but is less expensive, is the most budget-friendly choice. If cost isn’t an issue, custom ironwork is an excellent way to incorporate a fence or gate that’s completely unique.
Natural “fencing.” Hedges and shrubs reduce noise and dust better than a fence, are less expensive, and look lush and beautiful. You’ll just have to be patient while your “fence” grows in.
Be nice to your neighbours. Talk to them before you do anything. Choose a design that looks good from both sides, and make sure you know exactly where your property lines are.
Think outside the box. You may not need to surround your whole yard to get the privacy you want. Consider using a fence to screen in a sitting area or create an outdoor room.
A great-looking fence adds tremendous value to your home – whether it’s resale value or your own enjoyment of it. Think carefully about your needs and your personal style, then go ahead and build a fence you’ll love for years to come.