Category: Blog

Is a Vinyl Pool Fence a Good Idea?

Is a Vinyl Pool Fence a Good Idea

A backyard pool is a wonderful feature in any home or commercial property, providing a comfortable way to unwind and stay cool during a hot day. Despite this, a pool can present a safety threat, particularly for small children. To keep your guests and family safe, it is recommended that you invest in pool fencing. It helps regulate access to your swimming pool. This means that your children can enjoy it, but not without some level of supervision. Additionally, a pool fence is an effective way to ward off pets and animals from your swimming pool.

If you’re “on the fence” about installing a pool fence, let’s run down all the reasons you need one ASAP.

Reasons for Getting a Pool Fence

As you weigh the benefits of getting a pool fence against the installation cost, these are the best reasons you should get pool fencing done.

Safety

The primary reason why you should get a pool fence is safety. If you have children or pets at home, a pool fence is a necessity. Even if you don’t have children or pets of your own, you may have visitors. Accidental drownings are preventable, and you should take every precaution to avoid such a tragedy.

A pool fence will keep your loved ones protected and reduce any unsupervised access to the pool. Although pool fence guidelines vary from one state to another and sometimes even from city to city, it is still common sense to have one. Swimming pools are responsible for claiming the lives of hundreds of kids each year. According to recent data, 350 under the age of 5 will drown each year. Therefore, it is each pool owner’s responsibility to make safe choices and erect sturdy fencing.

Legal Requirements

Many cases of drowning are reported each year. Because of this, many neighborhoods have now made it a requirement to have a pool fence around backyard swimming pools. In some places, municipalities are very specific about pool fences. They have strict requirements for fence material and height. They charge penalties on homeowners who do not comply with this requirement. When you work with a professional installer like Bravo Fence Company, we will ensure that all local requirements are met.

Insurance Requirements

Many insurance companies also require homeowners to have a pool fence installed before providing liability coverage. Otherwise, they may charge much higher premiums. Homeowners may be required to confirm that safety requirements have been met if they are installing a new pool.

Privacy

If you live in a neighborhood where backyards are small and houses are close to each other, a pool fence can provide better privacy. And of course, more privacy means you can relax and enjoy your pool. A pool fence acts as an attractive enclosure that provides the freedom of the outdoors on your property.

Convenience

As a safety measure, some companies offer various pool nets and covers. However, putting up a pool cover or pool net every time you plan on swimming is very inconvenient. Pool covers can be heavy and they take up a lot of your time and energy. With pool fences, you won’t have to worry about this. It requires no effort from you. Once you get a pool fence installed, all you have to do is sit back, relax, and enjoy. And make sure you lock that gate after each use!

Why a Vinyl Pool Fence is Best

So now that you understand the reasons for getting a pool fence, what kind should you get?

There is no better way to enhance the safety and security of your swimming pool than by installing a pool fence. However, to reduce costs, consider installing a versatile vinyl pool fence. Vinyl is an excellent alternative to more traditional fencing materials such as wood. In fact, your vinyl pool fencing will be up to five times stronger than if it were built using wood!

As more and more states in the U.S. require some sort of fence or barrier around the pool, the best possible option is to go ahead and install a vinyl pool fence. Let’s run through all the reasons why!

Security

With other types of pool fencings, like ornamental wood or metal, a larger gap exists between the posts. A vinyl pool fence is a great way to add the extra cushion of privacy around a pool. It is also ideal for creating a private getaway right in your backyard since it provides enhanced privacy.

Low-Maintenance

Vinyl fencing is significantly lower maintenance than other forms of fencing. For instance, wood fencing requires sanding, painting, sealing, and replacements over the years. Vinyl fences require almost no maintenance, just a good hose down once in a while. And without much attention, they’ll still last decades. This makes them a great financial investment.

Aesthetics

If you are choosing vinyl fencing that you have an array of choices. There are numerous designs and you have the opportunity to choose from the many. If you adopt wood and metal fencing the choice is limited. Feel free to adopt vinyl and witness the difference of positivity all on your own. Another great benefit to choosing vinyl pool fencing is the wide array of designs. With wood and metal fencing, the type of fencing you can get is limited, but with a Weatherables pool fence, you can choose from picket to privacy fences in several designs. Another advantage of vinyl is that it keeps its appearance just as well as it keeps its strength. Vinyl fencing doesn’t fade in the sun, doesn’t stain from water or rust, and doesn’t need to be painted or otherwise protected. This makes it great for pool fencing – after all, you already have enough maintenance to worry about with taking care of the pool itself. Why would you want to add your fence to that list?

Durability

When it comes to durability, there is no better fencing choice than vinyl. Wood fences are prone to rot, and metal fences can rust and corrode. Vinyl fences on the other hand are nearly indestructible and impervious to the elements. A vinyl fence can withstand high-pressure situations and has the strength to keep your pool safe.

Pool fences need to be durable. Unlike privacy fences and decorative garden fences, pool fences withstand a lot of abuse. We hang our wet towels on them, splash them with pool water, and open and shut the gates dozens of times a day. Your pool fence needs to be able to stand up to both constant use by you and your family, and constant exposure to sun, rain, and other weather.

That’s why vinyl is the perfect material for a pool fence. Unlike wood and metal, vinyl doesn’t deteriorate over time from exposure to the sun, rain, or normal use. Wood fences swell and shrink when they get wet or dry, and metal fences like chain-link can rust over time. Vinyl is the only product that keeps 100 percent of its strength for its entire lifespan.

Takeaways on Installing a Vinyl Pool Fence

With the weather warming up, chances are you’re getting ready to enjoy your swimming pool. Or maybe you’re just starting to think about putting one in on your property. But whether you’ve had your pool for years or it’s still in your dreams, a vinyl pool fence is the perfect way to keep your pool safe and secure. That isn’t to say that all pool fences are created equal. In fact, the reality is far from it. Vinyl pool fences offer superior durability and a longer lifespan than other kinds of fences, and they look better too.

At Bravo Fence Company, we can install a great, high-quality vinyl pool fence in your yard at a great price. All of our pool fences include safety features including self-closing and self-locking doors and correct height and spacing requirements. Plus, our materials are strong and durable, meaning once you have a fence you’ll have it forever!

Should You Repair or Replace Your Fence?

interspersed wooden fence

A well-maintained wooden fence is an excellent addition to any home. It gives your yard the privacy and security to protect your property, and a traditional wood fence can also make your home more attractive. Other types of fences—for instance, vinyl and aluminum—also have looks that can make your home stand out for a unique style or fit in if you want your home to match your neighbors. A fence is not just practical; it is a reflection of your style and personality. But to keep it looking its best, you may eventually to to repair or replace your fence.

When a good fence starts to wear down, it can become an eyesore instead of an asset. Also, a worn-down fence may draw the attention of your homeowners association. Many HOAs require fences to stay in good condition since a rotting fence can make the whole neighborhood look run-down. So if your fence is beginning to show its age, you have two options: you can repair or replace your fence. Knowing which option to choose requires a close inspection of your fence, evaluation of the damage, and a decision on how much you want to invest in your fence’s future.

Should You Repair or Replace Your Fence [infographic]

Inspecting the Damage

The first step in deciding whether to repair or replace your fence is to make an honest and thorough assessment of the damage. Knowing the condition of your fence is the only way to get an accurate estimate of the labor and costs involved in repairing it. The type and extent of repairs you can make depend on the type of fence you have, so let’s take a look at some common fencing materials to see what sorts of repairs each one may require.

Wood Fences

Wood fences are the most common type of residential fence. They have become a hallmark of suburban living, and not without good reason. A wood fence is cost-effective, good-looking, and provides ample privacy and security. It can keep children and pets in, and unwanted guests and prying eyes out.

Unfortunately, wood fences are also the most prone to damage from regular wear and tear. Over time, the sun, wind, and rain age the wood, and your fence will start to deteriorate. How much and how fast a wood fence degrades depends a lot on the type of wood. An inexpensive spruce fence may last only 4 to 7 years. A pine fence lasts longer, about 5 to 12 years. Cedar is more expensive and more durable, lasting anywhere from 15 to 30 years, based on weather conditions and maintenance. A fence made of treated lumber can last 20 years or more, so it’s not surprising that treated lumber is also one of the most common wood fence materials.

How to Spot Damage to a Wood Fence

The first signs of damage you many notice to a wood fence are cracks and holes. These can usually be repaired with a little wood putty, but you’ll need to paint over the repairs if you want the whole fence to match. If you’ve left your wood its natural color, discoloration is another early warning sign of decay. If part of your fence is turning yellow or gray, the wood is deteriorating, and you may need to replace either the affected pickets or the whole panel. The most significant type of damage to a wood fence is rot at the base of the posts. The posts hold up your fence, but over time, even a well-maintained fence will start to show wear at the bottom of the posts.

Posts can wear out more quickly in humid or rainy climates and on properties without adequate drainage. Rot and shifting soil can cause wood posts to lean, warping the entire fence. Posts are usually installed in a cement footing, so replacing a damaged post requires digging out the entire footing. But if only a post or two is leaning, you may be able to repair the posts instead of replacing your entire fence.

To inspect your wood fence, start at the posts and inspect them from the base up. Look for signs of rot or insect damage close to the ground, and follow the post upward, looking for cracks or leaning. Next, inspect the pickets, looking for cracks, holes, and discoloration. Inspect the entire fence, and tally up how many posts and pickets are damaged.

Aluminum Fences

Aluminum fences can last a long time if they are appropriately maintained. But proper maintenance can be expensive. To keep an aluminum fence from prematurely aging, it needs to be inspected annually for bubbling paint or rust. Any rust or bubbling paint needs to be sanded down and repainted to protect the aluminum from further damage. An aluminum fence maintained this way can last for decades. However, there are other types of damage to aluminum fences that can’t be solved with responsible maintenance.

One of the most common problems we see with older aluminum fences has nothing to do with the fence itself. Instead, the problem is with the ground beneath the fence. Over years and decades, soil can settle and shift. As the ground below shifts, the posts can be pulled out of position, putting a strain on the rest of the fence. Aluminum has very little give, and a shift of just a couple of inches can warp railings or cause cracking at the joints. Since aluminum fences are often welded in place, repairing a warped fence can be a laborious process that requires a professional builder.

Aluminum fences are also susceptible to damage from accidents, such as falling trees or being hit by a vehicle. A strong impact can dent or bend an aluminum fence, and there is really no way to un-dent the metal. A section of fence that gets bent out of shape must be removed and replaced by a qualified professional.

Vinyl Fences

If you want to build your fence and then forget about it, vinyl is your best friend. A vinyl fence is basically plastic. Its color is built-in, so there is no paint to crack, peel, or fade, and it is impervious to water and insects. The only maintenance it requires is an occasional wash with a garden hose or power washer to remove built-up dirt and grime.

Rot and water damage are not issues for vinyl. Instead, the most common problems with vinyl fences are degradation from the UV rays in sunlight, and warping due to shifting soil. Vinyl has some amount of give and flexibility, but sunlight can make a fence more brittle and prone to cracking over time. A vinyl fence doesn’t rot, so the most common damage you’ll find is cracking panels. Vinyl fencing almost always comes as complete panels, so repairing cracks usually means removing and replacing the damaged panel. Luckily, vinyl is relatively inexpensive, and replacing a vinyl panel is much less expensive than replacing a section of aluminum fence.

How to Decide If It’s Time to Repair or Replace Your Fence

The main factors that help determine if you should repair or replace your fence are cost and longevity. Obviously, if it is more expensive to repair than replace your fence, you should opt for replacement. But even if the repairs may be less costly in the short-term, there are times when replacement is still a better option. If a fence is nearing the end of its expected lifetime, repairing it a little at a time may not be worth it. You can make a small repair today, but you are likely to need more repairs soon, and the repairs will only continue to add up. So if your fence is nearing the top end of its expected lifespan, it may be worth replacing it before you get caught in an endless cycle of minor repairs.

The 20% Rule

Most fencing professionals agree that a good rule of thumb is to replace a fence when more than 20% of the fence requires repairs. The fence material and style will determine how much of the fencing needs to be repaired. For instance, a wood fence may only need repairs to a few pickets at a time, whereas a vinyl fence requires replacing entire panels. Take a look at what needs repair and add up the damage. If more than 20% of your fence needs work, you’re probably due for a new fence.

This rule may be a little different for some materials. For instance, an aluminum fence can be expensive to repair, but it is also expensive to install a new fence. The 20% rule should be applied in combination with a cost comparison. If a replacement is significantly more expensive than repairs, even if 20% of your fence is damaged, you may want to try to keep your current fence. Ultimately, the best way to determine if you should repair or replace your fence is to get an estimate from a professional. If you think it might be time to replace your fence, contact Bravo Fence for an estimate. We’ll let you know the cost of a new fence and whether we recommend that you repair or replace your fence.

What You Need to Know When You’re Planning a New Fence

man holding a piece of wood

Are you planning a new fence? Congratulations! A new fence is a great way to improve the look and value of your home. Whether you are replacing an old fence or starting from scratch, a new fence is always an improvement. We know that you have lots of options when it comes to planning a new fence, and it can seem overwhelming. You have choices about materials, design, fence height, colors, and even the exact location of the new fence. If you feel like you’re in a bit over your head, you have no need to worry. A Bravo Fence Company consultant is happy to work with you to plan the fence of your dreams. Contact Bravo Fence Company today to start planning your new fence.

What You Need to Know When You’re Planning a New Fence [infographic]

Where Will Your New Fence Be Located

Before you can start planning anything else, you need to know exactly where your fence will be located. We know this isn’t the fun part. That will come later, when you get to start choosing colors and designs. But it may be the most significant decision you make.

If you are planning to replace an existing fence, you may just put the new fence in the exact same spot. If you are planning a new fence, you have more options, but you need to work carefully. Many homeowners want to install a fence to close in the perimeter of their property. It’s a popular option and a great way to use your fence, but be careful. Before you mark the edge of your property, you need to know exactly where that edge is. If you overstep the boundaries of your property by even a few inches, you may end up having to take the whole thing down. We would never want to install a fence only to have it torn down, so we always make sure to follow the guidelines precisely.

To locate the boundaries of your property, you will need plans from a surveyor. If you are lucky, you have the original documents that came with the deed to your home, which should include a survey. If you’ve been in your home for a long time and aren’t sure where your survey is, you can usually get one from the city. If all else fails, you can have a surveyor from your city or county come to your home and prepare new plans.

What Material Should Your New Fence Be

The first step in the design process is selecting the material for your new fence. At Bravo Fence, we specialize in wood, aluminum, steel, chain link, and vinyl fences. The material you choose will have a lot to do with the function of your new fence. Other factors include the styles of the houses around you.

While it is not a requirement (unless your HOA has regulations about it), planning a new fence to fit in with your neighbors is always a good idea. If you’re neighborhood is mostly wood and vinyl fences, you should probably avoid chain link that’s visible from the street. But if chain link is standard for your neighborhood, it may be a great, cost-effective solution for your home. The same is true for steel and aluminum fences. Steel and aluminum can both mimic the look of classic wrought iron. If you live in a neighborhood where wrought iron is the norm—common in more urban settings—a wood or vinyl fence may look out of place.

Considerations When Selecting a Material

Matching your setting is just one consideration in planning a new fence. You should also consider your budget, your desired design, and the function of your fence.

Wood is a classic material for privacy fences. It is strong, solid—no peeping toms— and it ages well. At Bravo Fence, we offer pressure treated pine, cedar, and composite wood fences.

If you want a vintage or high-end look, we recommend aluminum or steel. A steel fence is extremely secure, and aluminum is not far behind. There are many design options for these metal fences, and the options are completely different than the options for wood.

If you like the look of wood, but want something less expensive and with less maintenance, you should consider vinyl. Vinyl fences have come a long way. They can look like wood, but without the same aging and maintenance concerns.

Chain link is strong and cost-effective. It is also easy to repair if it gets damaged. Chain link is a great solution for keeping pets contained. With added slats, it can provide a lot of privacy, too.

Choosing a Color, Design, and Height

This is where planning a new fence really gets fun. Once you’ve finalized your fence’s location and material, you can start picking out colors and designs. The options can seem a bit overwhelming, but think of it like picking paint colors for a new home. It should be fun, but also well thought out and carefully considered.

Wood Fence Designs

If you are building a wood fence, you have several options to choose from. First, determine how transparent you want your fence to be. If you are building a privacy fence, you probably want a solid fence. You can also choose semi-solid fences that have small gaps. There is also a wide selection of tops for your wood fence. The simplest top is just a straight cut. But you can also choose a variety of curved and mitered tops. Some fences include specialized tops the include lattice and other designs about the solid part of the fence. Posts can also be fitted with a variety of finials and other decorative caps.

If you are building a more decorative fence, or just marking a boundary, you can go more transparent. Picket and split rail fences are two popular styles of transparent fences. Picket fences are very popular in the front yard of cottage-style homes. They are also popular on many classic ranch-style suburban homes. Picket fences are typically ornamental, and rarely more the four feet tall. 36” and 48” picket fences are standard.

If your home is a little more rural, or even just has a rural style, split rail can complement your home. Split rail is common on farms or around corrals. There are quite a few types of split rail fence, ranging from sleek and modern to unfinished and rustic. Split rail fences are typically lower than privacy fences, at three to four feet tall. A two-rail fence usually measures 36” to the top of the rail, while a three-rail fence is usually 48” tall. In some cases, a four-rail fence can be five feet tall, but four-rail fences are not common.

Aluminum and Steel Fences

Aluminum and steel fence designs range from the sleek and modern to the classical and ornate. One of the most popular uses of metal fences is to mimic the look of traditional wrought iron. A wrought iron look-alike fence can be as ornate as you like, with curves, designs, and decorative caps. Metal fences are most often painted black, but you can select white of other colors depending on your personal style. Many traditional designs include finials that are painted gold.

For a more modern look, aluminum and steel fences can have straight, clean lines and minimal or no ornamentation. A typical modernist metal fence will include sleek black posts and matching rails. However, many colors and specific styles are available.

Chain Link Fences

Residential chain link is not limited to the plain gray fencing you see in many commercial applications. There are two primary methods for dressing up a chain link fence. The first is to cover the chain link in vinyl coating. The coatings come in many colors, and they can also soften the chain link so it is less industrial looking. Another option is to place vertical or diagonal slats in the chain link. The slats come in many colors, and they add both color and privacy to your fence. Chain link can also be painting, which expands your color option to almost any color you can imagine.

Chain link comes in rolls that range from three feet to twelve feet tall. Three or four feet is common for a front or side yard. If you plan to add slats and use your chain link fence as a privacy fence, consider a six-foot fence. Taller fences than six feet are uncommon in residential settings.

Answering Your Questions About Planning a New Fence

Planning a new fence can seem overwhelming. There are endless choices to make, and sometimes the differences aren’t clear. When you work with Bravo Fence Company, we will help you navigate these choices to design the perfect fence for you. Contact us today to get started!

5 Good Reasons to Build a Fence in the Winter

metal fence

Building a new fence is the sort of home improvement project that often takes time to get around to. Many homeowners realize they need a new fence, but don’t act right away. Instead, they bide their time, trying to decide what sort of fence to get, how much to spend, and when to get started. It’s not uncommon for homeowners to decide it’s time to build a new fence when the weather warms up and spring is in the air. After all, spring is a time for new endeavors and new projects. It would seem like the ideal time to build a fence. But if that’s what you think, you may be wrong. Here are five good reasons to build a fence in the winter. It seems counterintuitive, but we’ll lay out exactly why winter is an excellent time for fence building.

5 Good Reasons to Build a Fence in the Winter [infographic]

1. Avoid the Rush

Spring and summer are peak construction times for most fence installers. During these warmer months, jobs are often scheduled out months in advance. So when you contact a fence installation company, don’t be surprised if they tell you their next availability is weeks or even months away. Fence installation teams are busy from spring to early fall. Everyone is outdoors, and people begin to look around at their yards and discover the need for a new fence.

Building a fence in spring or summer means waiting in line with everyone else. But if you build a fence in the winter, you can skip ahead and get your project rolling relatively quickly. And construction team availability is not the only issue to consider. If your fence requires a permit, a variance, or any other input from a local government, winter is ideal. Late fall and winter are the slow months for almost every type of construction. That means faster turnaround on government permits and inspections. Everyone, from the business owners to the installation teams to the government employees, is less busy in the winter. They can dedicate more time to your project and have a much more manageable workload. If you do have to wait, you can be pretty sure the backlog is much more manageable than it would be during the busy season.

2. You Aren’t Outside as Much

Fence construction should be a relatively quick process. But it can still disrupt your backyard or any other area where you are installing the fence. During the summer, that can mean sacrificing valuable outdoor time. It’s no fun to hang out in a construction zone, and the noise alone can make your yard unlivable. So why not build a fence when you aren’t going outside?

Even in Atlanta, low winter temperatures make most backyards vacant in the winter months. That also makes it a great idea to build a fence in the winter. Instead of wasting precious summer days, you can get the job done while most people are spending their time indoors.

3. Building a Fence in the Winter is Better for Your Fence

Wooden fences are the most common privacy fences we install. But wood is a natural material and takes time to season properly. Any wood is susceptible to damage from shifting temperatures, UV rays, and rough weather. If you install a fence in the summer, summer storms and heat can warp wooden pickets. The best way to avoid warping is to install your fence when the weather is still reliably cool.

In most cases, wooden fences are built from pressure-treated wood. That means that chemicals have been forced into the timber under very high pressure. The chemicals help preserve the wood and protect it from damage caused by weather and pests. But that leaves the wood slightly moist. It can take weeks or months for the wood to dry completely and reach its maximum durability. Building a fence in the winter gives the wood a chance to season and become hardy before it is exposed to the summer heat. That can help prevent warping and splitting due to expansion and contraction with changing temperatures.

4. Save Your Landscaping

At Bravo Fence Company, we do everything we can to reduce our impact on your yard and all of your property. But no matter how careful we are, any construction on your property is bound to leave a bit of a mark. We need to dig up the area around your fence. And as materials and workers’ feet move around your yard, there may be some damage to your grass or landscaping. That’s why it makes so much sense to build a fence in the winter.

During winter, your grass and other landscaping are mostly dormant. While too much damage can be hard to recover from in the spring, it is less damaging when the plants are dormant. As long as the weather remains cold, most of the action is going on beneath the surface. Your plants’ roots are just waiting to spring to life when the weather warms. So you are less likely to damage your plants during construction.

5. Save Time and Money

Everyone loves to save time and money. When you build a fence during the winter, you can save both!

Building your fence during the winter is a great way to save time. When you try to book your fence installation during peak season—spring and summer—you may find yourself on a long waiting list. But winter tends to be slower. It is quite possible that you can get your fence installation started within just a few days or weeks. And the job can sometimes go even faster because there are more team members available to work on your fence. When a fencing company is stretched thin, building multiple jobs, you may get fewer workers to build your fence. But if you choose to build a fence in the winter, your installation company may dedicate more workers to your job, getting it done more quickly.

The winter is also a great time to save money. Some fencing companies may offer discounts when work is slower. Another significant factor in the price of your fence is the cost of materials. But did you know that prices for materials can fluctuate from season to season? It’s a matter of supply and demand. In the summer, when everyone is trying to purchase materials for their fences, prices go up. In the winter, many suppliers offer discounts, which can translate into savings for homeowners.

Contact Bravo Fence Company to Build Your Fence Before the Rush

Now that you know the benefits of building a fence in the winter, you may be jumping to get your job started as soon as possible. Luckily, Bravo Fence Company is ready and waiting for your call. Our staff is trained to be hyper-responsive. In many cases, we are the company to provide an estimate for a job, beating out the competition. And we stay with you throughout the building process. We are in touch the whole time, and our goal isn’t just to build a great fence but also to provide top-notch customer service. So if you want to find out how you can get a new fence before the rush, contact Bravo Fence Company today!

Three Good Questions to Ask Before Building a Privacy Fence

woman with question marks

Wooden privacy fences are some of the most common fences around. With the explosion of suburbs in the 1950s, America saw a new type of residential layout. Houses were lined up next to each other, street after street, with very little to differentiate one from the next. Backyards became a standard feature of these suburban homes, and along with backyards came wooden privacy fences to mark off property boundaries and keep out prying eyes. But before building a privacy fence on your property, there are some questions you need to ask.

Three Good Questions to Ask Before Building a Privacy Fence

1. What Laws Govern Building a Privacy Fence?

Depending on where you live, you may have several layers of laws and ordinances that regulate your wooden privacy fence. Many states have laws that govern the maximum height of a privacy fence. Laws may also address how far a fence has to be from a road or sidewalk and other details of fence placement and construction.

In Georgia, there are very few state-wide laws that govern fences. But that doesn’t mean anything goes. On the contrary, the lack of uniform state laws means that fences are governed by a patchwork of overlapping jurisdictions. Depending on where you live, your fence may be subject to regulations from your county, city, or homeowners association.

Before you can start planning your privacy fence, make sure that you are aware of any rules or ordinances that apply to it. If you build a fence that doesn’t follow the law, you may be required to take it down at your own expense. You could also be subject to fines or a lien on your home from an HOA.

In addition to researching the pertinent laws and regulations, you need to obtain the right permit. Many cities and counties require a building permit to erect a fence. Some have specific permits just for fences. Your local fence company should be able to help you with the permitting process.

Boundary Fences

If you are building a boundary fence around the perimeter of your property, you may run into additional legal considerations.

Before you can build a boundary fence, your county or city may require approval from a surveyor. At the very least, you should check your deed, assessor’s office, or the surveyor’s paper that you received when you bought your home. Any of those should tell you where your property boundary is. Although Georgia has no state laws specifically governing fences, it does have laws about property boundaries and encroachment.

A fence that is located precisely on the border of your property is considered the joint property of both neighbors. Both neighbors are equally responsible for maintenance, and neither may make changes to the fence without mutual agreement. So if you plan to take down, modify, or replace a boundary fence, your very first step should be talking to your neighbor.

Finally, if you really hate your neighbor and you want to erect a ten-foot fence between you and them, you may need to think again. While Georgia law doesn’t regulate fence height, there is legal precedent— see Hornsby v. Smith (1941)—regarding spite fences. If your neighbor can show that the fence doesn’t serve any purpose other than annoying them, you may be ordered to take it down.

2. How High Will Your Fence Be?

We’ve already established that many features of a privacy fence are determined by various governing bodies. Your county or municipality likely has some rules about fence height. If you like in a community with a homeowners association, there may be very specific rules about fences in order to maintain a uniform appearance throughout the neighborhood. HOA regulations may regulate height, material, and color, among other features.

One of the primary goals of a homeowners association is to keep up housing prices and the value of homes within their jurisdiction. If a house sticks out too much, or if it looks unattractive, it could negatively affect the value of the houses around it. So HOAs maintain strict rules about the appearance of homes and property, including fences.

Applying for a Variance

If you have a good reason to make your fence higher than what is allowed, there are a few options. If you are only bound by a county or municipality, you could apply for a variance. A variance is a request for an exemption based on a demonstrated need. For instance, if your home backs up onto a wooded area and deer are eating your plants, you might request an eight-foot deer fence. Or, if your property is overlooked by other property at a higher elevation, you may need more height to maintain your privacy. These are all legitimate reasons to request a variance. However, requesting a variance takes more time than just applying for a permit, even if the variance is granted. So be prepared to wait longer before you can begin work.

If you live in an area governed by an HOA, you may have more trouble getting an exception. Unlike cities, HOAs are often concerned with uniformity, so the extent of your exemption could be very limited. However, it is critical to know your HOA codes and stick to them. HOAs may be frustrating at times, but most are set up with strong enforcement capabilities. An HOA can typically fine you or even put a lien on your home if you fail to comply.

3. What Is the Plan for Getting In and Out of the Fenced Area?

This may seem obvious once you hear it, but many homeowners don’t give it much thought until we point it out. When planning your fence, you need to take into account how you will get in and out of your fenced area. In some rare cases, a privacy fence will surround a backyard with no gates whatsoever. Access to the fenced-in area is exclusively through the home. But setting up a backyard privacy fence that way can be very inconvenient, and we suggest that most fences have at least one gate that allows you to exit the yard without going through the house.

When you plan the location of your gates, make sure to consider how you will be using your space. If you are using the gates for access on foot, a standard three-foot-wide gate should suffice. Three feet is adequate for most people to get in and out, as well as small to medium-sized items like trash bins, push mowers, etc. If you have larger items that need access in and out—for example, a ride-on mower, a vehicle, etc.—consider a wider gate. Double gates are useful when you need a wider opening.

If you may occasionally need to bring extra-large items or equipment into your fenced-in area, consider making part of your fence semi-removable. Ask your builder about ways to attach a section of fencing so that it can be removed and then put back up when necessary. Obviously, this is not something you would want to do every day. But this might be relevant if you plan on building a swimming pool or doing extensive landscaping work that requires heavy machinery.

Ask Us Your Questions About Building a Privacy Fence

These are a few questions you might want to ask before you begin building a privacy fence. But we know that homeowners have other questions, too. We love questions, and we’re happy to help homeowners learn more about their options and requirements when building a privacy fence. If you are considering putting up a fence and you have questions, don’t hesitate to contact Bravo Fence Company. We’re here to help!

How to Select a Fence Height

girl with a hat

When it comes time to select a fence, there are plenty of options. Some of the big choices include deciding on the style and material fence. But one significant decision that people often don’t think of is how high to build a fence. If you are replacing a fence, most people just assume they will replace it with one that is very similar. But you don’t have to stick with what you have. And if you are building a brand new fence, you have to decide from the outset what fence height you want to install.

How to Select a Fence Height [infographic]

Considerations in Picking a Fence Height

When deciding how high to build your fence, there are some questions you will need to ask yourself. The height you finally pick for your fence will depend on the answer to those questions.

  • What is the function of this fence?
  • Where is the fence located?
  • Am I concerned about resale value?
  • Are there local rules about fence height, such as municipal codes or HOA rules?

A fence could, in theory, be any height you choose. In reality, however, there are some standard sizes that most fences conform to. Using a standard size is cheaper and easier than building a completely custom fence. If you build to a standard size, you should be able to find posts, pickets, boards, and even complete sections to match any style of fence. There are many excellent style and material options for standard-sized fences. Standard sizes are typically 3’, 3.5’, 4’, 6’, and 8’.

If you choose to go with a custom size, you will likely pay a lot more. The pieces of your fence will need to be cut to size or even custom fabricated. Since there is a pretty wide range of fence sizes available, there is rarely any reason to select a custom size.

Privacy Fence

A wooden privacy fence is one of the most common residential fences most installers see. A solid wooden privacy fence is a great way to block off a backyard. It can keep neighbors and other from seeing into your private space. It can also help block the view looking out from your yard. If you live along a busy street or your yard backs up onto an unpleasant site—like the back of a building or some trash bins—a privacy fence can block the view.

A typical privacy fence is built six feet tall. At that height, you should have no trouble finding dozens of different styles in all different materials. At Bravo Fence, we specialize in pressure treated pine, cedar, and composite wood fences. You can take a look at some of the styles of our wooden fences here.

Pressure treated pine is an excellent value that stands up well to all sorts of weather. The natural wood has a classic look and is available in a wide range of styles, both for the boards and the posts. Cedar is a beautiful wood that many choose for its high-end look at a great price. Cedar is especially suited to outdoor use, as it is insect and rot resistant. Composite is a great choice for homeowners looking for a low-maintenance, long-lasting fence. Wood composite is a manufactured material made from wood fibers and recycled plastic. It is impervious to much of the damage that normally affects a wooden fence.

A six foot fence is also ideal for keeping young children and pets contained and safe in your backyard. Six feet is tall enough to keep most dog breeds in your yard. However, if you have a large breed, like a retriever, or a dog that has exceptional laping skills, you many want to consider an extended privacy fence.

Extended Privacy or Deer Fence

In some cases, six feet isn’t sufficient for a privacy fence. In those cases, the tallest standard height available is eight feet. This height is often referred to as a deer fence, because it is tall enough to keep out leaping deer. If your home backs up onto wood or an open space with a local deer population, this may be ideal. It keeps deer from entering your yard and eating your plants or terrorizing your pets. An eight foot fence is also recommended for large or athletic dogs that might be able to get over a six foot fence.

In some situations, an eight foot fence is actually necessary for full privacy. If there are other properties uphill from your home, you may need a higher fence to block their view into your yard. Or, if your property abuts a loud or busy street, the extra height can help keep out noise. However, before installing an eight foot fence, check your local codes and municipal rules. Many municipalities have rules that limit fences to six feet tall.

If you live in an area with a homeowners association, check their rules, as well. Many HOAs have even stricter rules that govern the height, material, color, and style of fences and partitions.

If your municipality has a rule against fences over six feet, you can request a variance when you apply for your building permit. Applying for a variance may mean your permit takes longer to process. But if it is granted, you can legally build a higher fence than what is normally allowed under local zoning regulations.

Shorter Fences

In some situations, a shorter fence is preferable. Many cities and homeowners associations limit the height of fences and partitions in the front of a property. For example, backyard fences may be permitted up to six feet, while front yard fences are limited to four or even three feet. In most cases, that’s just fine, because front yard fences are rarely privacy fences. Front yard fences are often decorative or serve as a visual marker to separate your property from a neighbor or from the street. The classic American white picket fence is a good example of a shorter fence.

Most front yard picket fences are built at three feet. They are beautiful to look at and can keep people off your lawn, without blocking the view in and out of your home. In some situations, tall fences may be prohibited in front of homes because they make it harder for drivers to see around corners at intersections. In those cases, you may be able to build a taller fence if it doesn’t block the line of sight, such as an aluminum fence.

Pool Fences

Pool fences are a very specific type of fence. While the fence itself can be of any material or style, the details are mandated by law. In most places, a pool fence must be four feet tall. The pickets cannot be more than a certain distance apart, and the same is true for the rails. The primary function of a pool fence is to keep out anyone who shouldn’t be using the pool unsupervised, such as children or pets. So pool fences need to be designed with no space large enough for a child to get through and no way to climb over the top. If you are building a pool, most jurisdictions require a pool fence or some sort of barrier. Check with your pool builder or contractor and make sure you know the regulations for a pool fence. An inadequate fence is both unsafe and illegal.

How to Choose the Correct Height for Your Fence

If you’re considering installing a new fence or replacing an old one, contact Bravo Fence Company. We will come to your home to look at your property and help you determine the best type of fence for your needs. We provide fences or every height and style, so we’re happy to give you lots of options.

 

What is the Best Wood for Fencing?

wooden fence

There are many materials to choose from for a new fence. But many homeowners are determined to stick with wood for its classic, natural look. We agree that wood is an excellent choice for a residential or commercial fence. However, once you’ve decided to go with wood, you still have more choices to make. The two most important decisions you need to make with a wood fence are what type of wood you want and how you will finish it. You may be wondering which is the best wood for fencing. Like most things in life, there is no single best. To find the right wood for your fence, you need to look at the features of each material and finish and decide what works best for you.

Why Choose a Wood Fence

There are many options when it comes to choosing a fence. Some people love the historic look of wrought iron. Others love the sleek modernism of steel fencing. Others like the simplicity and low cost of PVC. But there is something to be said for the classic simplicity of a wooden fence.

Wood is probably the oldest material for fences, and it has continued to be a favorite. Wood also offers many, many options. You can choose practically any shape and style. Wood is easy to work with and, when appropriately treated, holds up to the elements pretty well.

If you’re looking for a traditional style for your backyard, wood is ideal. Wooden fences remind people of the fences they had as kids. A tall wooden privacy fence is one of the hallmarks of suburban living. If you want something more rural, a split rail fence is an excellent choice. Or, if the American dream is what you’re going for, there’s nothing more perfect than a traditional wood picket fence.

Wood is exceptionally versatile. It can be painted, stained, or treated with a clear finish to bring out its natural beauty. If you like, you could even leave your fence untreated to get that faded gray look of wood exposed to the elements.

But with all these choices, what is the best wood for fencing? Let’s take a look at some common (and less common) choices to see how they stack up.

What is the Best Wood for Fencing [infographic]

Pine Fencing

Pine is a popular choice for wood fencing. It is soft and easy to work with, and it is also one of the cheapest options. Pine has some natural resistance to insects. But in almost every case, pine for outdoor fencing needs to be pressure treated. When wood is pressure treated, chemical gases are forced into the wood under high pressure. The chemicals help the wood withstand insects, moisture, and other weather-related dangers.

Treated pine does well in the ground and can resist rot. For this reason, many builders suggest using pine posts even if you choose another material for the pickets.

Cedar Fencing

Cedar is a good mid-price-range choice for a wooden fence. It has naturally-occurring oils that repel many insects, making it a sturdy choice for outdoor use. Cedar also has an appealing natural look. Many homeowners choose to stain their cedar fences instead of painting them. Staining protects the wood but also lets its natural beauty show through. Cedar fencing is more expensive than low-range pine. Cedar fences are often made up of cedar pickets with treated pine posts. Decay-resistant pine posts are better in the ground, while cedar is most resistant to sun and rain. However, some more expensive types of cedar, notably Western Red Cedar, may also be used for posts.

Cypress Fencing

Cypress is native to the southern United States. That makes it cheaper in the South and more expensive in other parts of the country, due to shipping costs. In areas where it is native, cypress can cost similar to cedar. In areas where it needs to be imported, it can cost significantly more.

Cypress is a great choice for fencing because it contains cypretine, a natural bug repellent. Its resistance to insects means less damage over time. Like cedar, many homeowners choose cypress for the look of the wood. To preserve its natural beauty, builders often stain instead of paint cypress fences. After staining, a clear sealer is added to protect the wood from the elements.

Redwood Fencing

Redwood is a popular choice for wooden fencing. It is often considered the best wood for fencing, and certainly one of the most common, although that designation is dependent on many factors. What makes it so appealing is that redwood is exceptionally durable. It is insect-resistant and weathers well. It also has a unique look that many homeowners love. Redwood is one of the more expensive options for wood fencing.

Redwood has a very narrow natural range. In the U.S., it is native only to the western slope of the Sierra Nevada mountain range and the coastal areas of Northern California. Outside of the U.S., redwoods are only native in a small region of China. As a species, redwoods are the largest trees in the world. Due to the size of the trees and the quality of the wood, redwood has long been favored as a source of lumber. Because of its popularity and narrow range, old-growth redwood is severely endangered. Homeowners choosing redwood for their fences should inquire about the source of the wood, and try to avoid using wood from endangered trees.

Tropical Hardwood Fencing

A variety of tropical hardwoods are available for fencing. Some of these woods are extremely dense, heavy, and durable. Homeowners choose them for those qualities, as well as their unique and beautiful appearance. But these woods are not cheap. They are actually the most expensive option for a wooden fence. Similar to redwood, some tropical hardwoods are subject to over-logging or may be taken from endangered forests. Be sure to check where your tropical hardwoods are coming from.

Composite Fencing

Composite fencing is one of the most eco-friendly choices for wood fencing. It is made of wood fibers mixed with recycled plastic, and it’s a great way to use both recycled plastic and bits of wood that are often treated as waste. It is not the absolute cheapest option, but it is definitely one of the most sturdy. Due to its plastic content, composite or manufactured wood is not subject to much of the regular aging that affects natural wood. Many composite and manufactured wood fences even come with warranties. Because it is manufactured, composite wood fences can mimic the look of many other types of wood.

Choosing the Best Wood for Fencing

Which type of wood you select for your fence is a personal choice. The best wood for your situation must take into account your budget, what look you want, and the local climate.

In mild climates, with relatively small shifts in temperature and little severe weather, durability is less of an issue. In regions with significant temperature swings, freezing winters, blazing hot sun, or severe storms and wind, durability is a much bigger concern.

If you are trying to save money in the short-term, pine is a good choice. But if you want to spend more now to avoid maintenance and replacement costs down the line, redwood may be more desirable. If you plan to move in the near future, it may not be necessary to install a fence that will last for decades. But if you plan to stay in your home for a long time, a fence that will stand the test of time is a good investment.

The local cost of materials can also differ from region to region, so what makes sense in one part of the country may be too expensive in another. Other local considerations include the types of fencing in your neighborhood and even local HOA regulations.

If you’re considering a new fence and want to learn more about your options, contact Bravo Fence Company for a consultation. They can help you narrow down your choices and guide you to the best wood for your fence.

Should I Get a Wrought Iron or Aluminum Fence?

wrought iron fence

If you’ve ever walked through a historic neighborhood, you’ve probably seen some beautiful wrought iron fences. Perhaps you are considering building your own. But do you really need wrought iron to get that look? Aluminum is a modern alternative with many benefits. We’ll walk you through a comparison of wrought iron and aluminum to help you figure out whether wrought iron or aluminum is for you.

Wrought Iron Fence

Wrought iron is iron that has been worked (wrought is an archaic form of the past participle for work). That means that is has been hammered or rolled while hot. Today, real wrought iron is no longer commercially produced. Mild steel, which is very similar to wrought iron, is often used in its place, and may even be referred to as wrought iron by some. In many cases, wrought iron is used to designate the style, including all forms of decorative metal fence.

Aluminum Fence

Aluminum is a popular stand-in for wrought iron. It has many of the same benefits as wrought iron and avoids some of its problems. Aluminum fences are not new, but they have become much more popular over the last decade. Some homeowner associations require aluminum for all new fences to preserve a uniform style for the neighborhood.

Should I Get a Wrought Iron or Aluminum Fence [infographic]

Strength and Durability

Wrought iron is one of the most difficult fences to penetrate, which makes it ideal for high-security situations. A wrought iron fence is difficult to damage, much less cut through.

Aluminum, on the other hand, is less sturdy than wrought iron. Residential aluminum fencing can be dented or bent if enough force is applied. In most situations, aluminum is an effective barrier, and residential aluminum fencing is mainly decorative. If you need more strength, you can turn to commercial aluminum fencing, which is slightly thicker-gauge and much stronger. For high-traffic, high-security areas, industrial aluminum fencing provides maximum strength and security.

Maintenance

A wrought iron fence requires significant maintenance to keep it from falling into disrepair. The biggest problem with wrought iron is that it rusts. To prevent rusting, the entire fence should be carefully inspected for corrosion at least once a year. Any rust spots should be sanded and repainted to avoid further damage. Once every few years, the entire fence should be sanded and repainted. This can make wrought iron fences expensive to maintain.

Aluminum fences need almost no maintenance. They can be cleaned occasionally with a garden hose, just to keep them looking fresh. Otherwise, an aluminum fence will not rust, peel, or chip.

Installation

Installing a wrought iron fence is a labor-intensive job. A section of wrought iron fence can weigh as much as 50 pounds. And the wrought iron needs to be hand-welded together. Wrought iron is typically not built to be installed on a grade. If a wrought iron fence will be installed on a grade, the fence needs to be stepped up, section by section.

Aluminum fence is relatively easy to install. Its sections are easy to work with, mostly weighing less than twenty pounds. Aluminum fences usually don’t require welding and can be put together with screws.

Cost

Wrought iron fencing is some of the most expensive fencing you can get. Authentic wrought iron has to be produced by a skilled blacksmith and can run in the hundreds or even thousands of dollars per section. Mild steel is commercially available, so it can be cheaper, but it is still an expensive option. The heavy weight of wrought iron or mild steel fencing makes it labor-intensive to install. The added labor means added cost. The hand welding necessary for wrought iron also increases costs significantly. Finally, wrought iron needs regular maintenance and even repainting. To repaint a wrought iron fence, the existing paint needs to be sanded off, which can be a large job. Caring for a wrought iron fence can be quite expensive. Due to the nature of wrought iron and its tendency to rust, many wrought iron fences have warranties as short as ten years.

Aluminum fencing is much less expensive than wrought iron. It is easier to produce, and therefore the fence sections are cheaper. At less than twenty pounds a section, installation is much simpler. Aluminum fencing can also be easily installed on a grade, saving labor on uneven ground. It is also relatively easy to install since it usually does not require welding. Because the installation is easier and faster, installation costs are much lower than wrought iron. There are also hardly any maintenance costs. Warranties are often for the lifetime of the fence.

The Final Decision

Deciding between wrought iron and aluminum comes down to a choice between an expensive, labor-intensive luxury item and a durable, cost-effective, authentic-looking alternative.

Wrought Iron Pros:

  • Classic Look
  • Extremely Durable with Proper Care
  • Sturdy material provides high security.

Wrought Iron Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Hard to Work With
  • Requires Hand Welding
  • Regular, Expensive Maintenance

Aluminum Pros:

  • Mimics Classic Look of Wrought Iron
  • Light and Easy to Work With
  • Installed With Screws
  • Much Cheaper Than Wrought Iron
  • Very Low Maintenance
  • Available in Residential, Commercial, and Industrial Grades to Match Your Strength and Durability Needs

Aluminum Cons:

  • Not 100% Authentic
  • Residential Grade Fencing Not as Sturdy as Wrought Iron

At this point, it should be pretty clear that aluminum is almost always a better option. Bravo Fence installs all types of aluminum fencing, from classic to modern styles and all grades. If you’re ready to find out more about aluminum fencing, contact Bravo Fence Company for more details and a free quote.

5 Common Fence Installation Mistakes to Avoid

5 Common Fence Installation Mistakes to Avoid

Adding a fence to your home is a great way to upgrade your property. Whether you are adding a new fence or rebuilding an old one, a new fence will make your property more livable and add value. But before you go ahead with your fence building project, you should look out for these five common fence installation mistakes to avoid. If you keep these mistakes in mind now, you can save yourself a lot of trouble in the future.

5 Common Fence Installation Mistakes to Avoid [infographic]

You Don’t Know Your Property Line

Many homeowners choose to build a fence along their property lines. It gives them the largest enclosed space possible and helps identify the edge of their property. But building on property lines can be risky. If you build just a few inches over the edge of your property, you may find yourself in legal trouble. It is illegal to build a fence on someone else’s property without their express permission.

At Bravo Fence Company, we recommend two safety procedures to avoid a misplaced fence. First, get your plat or property map. It can help you identify the limits of your property. Second, build a few inches or a full foot inside your property line. You won’t be giving up much space, and it could save you from inadvertently crossing the line. If you do cross the line, you could face steep fines or even be forced to take down the fence. That would be a terrible waste, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.

You Don’t Know Where Utilities are Buried

Just as you need to find official documents to determine your property line, you need to contact your utility company to determine the official location of any utility lines. The last thing you need when during your fence installation is to dig a fence post and run into a utility wire or pipe. Hitting wires could be dangerous, and breaking a pipe can cause serious problems. It’s best to avoid these problems from the outset by confirming the location of any local utility lines with your local utilities.

You Don’t Know Local Regulations

Local regulations imposed by counties, cities, and homeowners associations can seem onerous and unnecessary. But regardless of your feelings about them, they are the law, and you could pay dearly for ignoring them. Many local governments and HOAs regulate aspects of your fence like its height, placement relative to the public right-of-way, materials, and styles. Failing to note and adhere to these regulation is one of the most common fence installation mistakes we see, and it can have dire consequences.

Typically, local governments are more concerned with safety and right of way. For instance, many local governments prohibit fences that block the view of oncoming cars on a corner property. They also may require building several feet back from the local right of way. Even if your property extends to the edge of a sidewalk, you may have to build the fence a few inches or feet from the sidewalk.

One of the primary duties of an HOA is to maintain and improve property values. To that end, many HOAs regulate the appearance of new fences. They can limit fence materials, heights, and even styles. So before you plan your perfect fence, it makes sense to see what choices are available on your property.

If you fail to adhere to county or city regulations, you may be fined or even ordered to remove the offending fence. HOAs may be able to fine you by the day for an “illegal” fence. If you refuse to pay up, they could put a lien on your property, and that’s no fun!

The Wrong Materials

Choosing the proper material is among the most critical choices you need to make to prepare for your new fence installation. Different materials have different characteristics. Some materials may lend themselves to your needs and concerns, while others may require not. Choosing the wrong material for your needs nad lifestyle is a common mistake.

Wood is one of the most common and traditional fence materials available. It is nearly ubiquitous for privacy fences. However, it also requires more maintenance than most other materials. Wood needs to be restrained or painted every few years, and it is susceptible to rot and infestation. You also need to regularly check the bottom fence posts for rot. But if you want a good-looking, sturdy fence, wood is still a great choice.

If low-maintenance is important to you, vinyl fences take the cake. There is very little maintenance beyond a simple wash with a hose when needed. Colors and styles are slightly more limited than with wood because vinyl comes in complete fence panels. But there are still plenty of good choices.

For price, nothing beats chain link. If you have a large area to enclose, chain link can help control costs. There are also plenty of ways to dress up residential chain link so that it doesn’t look too industrial.

For a classic, sophisticated look, try ornamental metal fencing. Steel and aluminum offer lower maintenance than wrought iron and are much cheaper. In some cases, you can even install complete metal fence panels to speed up installation and reduce costs.

The Wrong Fence Company

DIY fence installation sounds like a good way to save money, but common fence installation mistakes can be costly. ON the other hand, installing a fence can be a straightforward job for the right professionals. Unfortunately, not every business that calls itself fence installers is the right fit. Prices can fluctuate, and so can quality. The last thing you want is to get stuck with a fencing company that isn’t reliable. We’ve heard horror stories about no-shows, shoddy work, poor customer service, and even jobs left unfinished. Luckily, you don’t have to put up with unreliable installers because you have already found Bravo Fence Company. We have experienced builders committed to high-quality work and excellent customer service. We work with customers to build the fence of their dreams at prices they can afford. Contact Bravo Fence Company today for your free estimate.

Adding a Fence to Your Home

Adding a Fence to Your Home

There are plenty of benefits of adding a fence to your home. But one question we often get is whether adding a fence to your home will increase its value. To answer that, we need to start with the caveat that there are very, very few home improvement projects that have a 100% or higher ROI when you sell. Some people make a living flipping houses, but that’s generally because they start with cheap, run-down homes and focus on getting the maximum sheen for the minimum investment. If your home isn’t dilapidated, there is a limit to how much value you can add to it. So don’t think of a fence, or any home improvement project, only as a way to make money. Instead, think of the benefits you will enjoy while you live in your home. If you enjoy your fence, so will your eventual buyers.

Curb Appeal

There are other reasons a fence can help sell a house that have less to do with the direct value of your home. A major factor in any home sale is curb appeal. As the name implies, curb appeal is the impression someone has of your home while standing on the curb. The idea is that this is their very first impression, before ever stepping foot on your property, much less inside your home. And while you may think that the true value of your home will shine through once a buyer gets inside, the human psyche is not on your side.

We all know that first impressions are hard to shake. So if a potential buyer gets a good impression from the curb appeal of your home, they are likely to view the interior of your house more favorably. But if your home looks run-down on the outside, buyers will likely spend their time inside your home trying to confirm or debunk the idea that the house is in poor shape. And that is definitely not the mindset you want from a potential buyer.

Adding a Fence to Your Home [infographic]

How Curb Appeal Affects Home Values

Curb appeal doesn’t directly raise or lower your home’s value. But it can have a more indirect effect on your final sale price. Homes with low curb appeal sell more slowly, and a slow sale can equal a lower selling price.

As a home sits on the market, two things happen. First, sellers get anxious, especially if they have already bought a new home. With pressure to sell, the price can drop. Second, potential buyers look at the amount of time the house has been on the market and wonder why it hasn’t sold. In fact, if a home isn’t selling, some real estate agents will actually take it off the market for a while to restart the clock, so to speak. Taking it off the market and then putting it back on makes it look like the home has only been for sale since its second introduction to the real estate market. And in some cases, before that second introduction to the market, homeowners are advised to improve the house’s curb appeal.

Adding a Fence to Your Home Improves Its Appearance

Curb appeal is where your new fence meets your home value. The fence itself is a nice feature, and a new fence does have some value. But the real gains come from the way your new fence enhances the overall appearance of your home.

To get the most visual appeal from your fence, you need to think about the perfect type of fence to enhance your home. You should consider the design and architectural style of your home as well as neighborhood standards. Few buyers want to be the stand-out house on the block that looks wildly different than everyone else. So if wooden picket fences are the norm on your block, you may want to think twice before installing a rustic split rail or classic ornamental metal fence.

But if you add the right type of fence for your home and your neighborhood, you could substantially improve its appearance by adding a fence to your home. The key is to understand what the different types of fences say and use that to decide which to install.

Picking the Right Fence to Add to Your Home

Selecting your fence and getting it right is the most significant factor in how much value you get from adding a fence to your home. Different fences accentuate different types of homes. Here’s a little rundown to help you pick the best for your home.

White Picket Fence

The white picket fence is the epitome of classic Americana. It is nearly synonymous with the American dream. As such, it works well with many traditional architectural styles. From brick ranches to classic colonial styles, a white picket fence works best with homes that are not too modern. A craftsman home, ranch, bungalow, colonial-style, Tudor, Victorian, or cottage all look great with a wood picket fence. However, some house styles do not lend themselves to traditional picket fences. If your house is a Mediterranean or contemporary style, wooden pickets may clash.

Ornamental Metal Fence

Ornamental metal fences can take on many shapes and styles to match a variety of homes. Metal fencing can be classic or contemporary, ranging from delicate decorative embellishments to stark modernism. Traditional wrought-iron look fences are perfect for old-style homes like colonial-style or traditional styles like cottages and even craftsman homes. For modern and contemporary homes, metal fencing with sleek, clean lines can accentuate the modernist architecture.

Classic Wood Privacy Fence

While they may not work in most front lawns, the classic wooden privacy fence is a staple of the suburban backyard. It is the most common type of fence we install, and you’ll find them in millions of homes. In many neighborhoods, property lines are marked by wooden privacy fences, including nearly every single house. There are numerous style choices, such as the type of wood, paint or stain color, and the pickets’ shape and style. Wooden fences can have flat tops, or they can be designed with curves or ridges. You can upgrade the posts with finials or other decorative features. Wood privacy fences are extremely practical and go with almost any type of home.

If you like the idea of a wood privacy fence but don’t like the idea of maintaining it, try vinyl. Vinyl privacy fences can look just like wood but with much less maintenance. Vinyl fences need little more than occasional cleaning with a hose or power washer to stay in tip-top condition.

Chain Link Fence

While most homeowners wouldn’t think of chain link fencing as a way to boost home values, you can’t rule it out. Chain link fencing has the distinction of being almost maintenance-free. If other houses in the area have chain link fencing, it may not stand out as unusual. And there are lots of ways to beautify a chain link fence. If you have hedges around your property and want a fence that can add security without blocking your plants, chain link is a great choice. Chain link can blend into plants and hedges for a natural look.

Add a Fence to Your Home for Your Enjoyment

While fences can increase curb appeal and home values, we recommend installing a fence you will love to live with. Think about your needs and use them as your guide. If you build a fence that works well for your family and your home, there is a good chance any potential buyers will feel the same. If you are interested in adding the perfect fence to your home, contact Bravo Fence Company for your free estimate.