It’s said fences make good neighbors and there’s a certain merit to this old cliché. If you want to fence your yard, it’s probably for one or more reasons. You might want privacy, it could be to block a street view, keep pets and children from roaming, or simply to add a visual border. Regardless of the reason, a new fence will be a significant expense and since you want to make the right decision for function, style, and to save money, you’ll need to know how to choose the right fence for your home.
How to Choose the Right Residential Home Fence
As mentioned, new fencing can serve more than one purpose, and, it’s one great way to enhance your landscape with a low maintenance feature. Nearly regardless of its primary use, you’ll get more out of it than just a property line barrier. In addition, you are adding a feature which will require occasional care to keep it looking its best. If you don’t attend to it periodically, it will become an eyesore and if it’s damaged by the weather elements over time or is subjected to heavy inclement weather, it could become the source of a code violation.
The type of fence you choose will not only play a key role in your home’s exterior design, but also provide one of the most important benefits of all homes; security. Privacy and security are two of the most common reasons Americans look to buy homes. A professionally installed fence gives every homeowner that true sense of home we all desire. Fencing, whether it be wood, chain link or wrought iron, will greatly affect your sense of home. —Improvement.com
Fence design and installation isn’t necessarily complicated, but it will be laborious, no matter what type of material you choose. Some will require more upkeep than others and there might be at least one material which isn’t allowed in your neighborhood or community. Here in Sarasota, there are many homeowners association communities, so, you might be limited on your choices. Additionally, if you are replacing a fence, the same type might be prohibited. So, let’s consider the basic factors on how to choose the right fence for your home:
- Determine its function. While it may not seem to be high-minded insight, there are homeowners who put wants before needs when choosing a new fence. With so many choices (wood, picket, chain link, vinyl, aluminum, wrought iron, bamboo, and farm fencing), it’s easy to select one based more on aesthetics than function. But, its use should be the first consideration on your list. Is it for privacy, to enhance a landscape, or to corral kids and pets?
- Think about resale value. Right alongside function is its value to your home, when it comes to resale. Sure, you might love the idea of putting-up a wrought iron fence or a white picket fence along your front lawn, but will it be a minus when it comes time to sell your property? Generally, a fence won’t be a deal killer, but, if it looks out-of-place, you might have to remove it later-on in the future. This won’t be as applicable to your backyard, but it will definitely be a factor if you put-in a fence on your front yard.
- Learn what maintenance is needed. Regardless of what material you choose, there will be period maintenance involved. For instance, a wrought iron fence will need to be painted from time to time, as will a white picket fence. Even if you choose a vinyl fence or a wood fence, you’ll have to power wash it now and again. Look into what maintenance is involved before you make a decision so you aren’t saddled with buyer’s remorse.
- Find out if what’s allowed in your community. If your house is in a homeowners association community, there could be rules prohibiting certain types of fence materials. In addition, you might also be limited with height restrictions, color, and location. Get in the know before you start putting up panels or digging holes in your yard.
- Know if there are any building permits required. Even if you aren’t limited by HOA rules, there’s still a possibility you’ll need a building permit from the locality in which you live to erect a fence on your property. You should also be sure to know where the property lines are and if there are any utilities buried where you intend to put-up your new fence.