A privacy fence is the perfect addition if you want to make your backyard a bit more secluded. If you have pets or children, privacy fences are great since they let your kids or pets run freely in the backyard, adding security and privacy. That said, if you want to know how to estimate the cost of a privacy fence, whether you hire a professional or do it yourself, here are a few factors to consider.
Check the County and/or Homeowner’s Association Guidelines
Make sure you have any building permits required to install the fence you want and check your homeowner’s association guidelines before purchasing the raw materials. Do a survey if you have doubts regarding the property lines. Also, check the local zoning laws and be sure about the boundary requirements and height limitations which may vary depending where you live. This will ensure that you know about the guidelines regarding size, color and materials to be used.
Mark Off Utility Lines
If you already do not have a fence, get the utility lines marked before building one. This will avoid accidental surprises like hitting underground wires or pipes while installing the fence. Also, make sure that you are not installing the fence directly above the utility lines. If the county needs to do some repair work in the future, your privacy fence could have to be taken up where the work needs to be done. To avoid such complications, it is better to get guidance from your local utility companies.
Determine Property Line and Placement of Fence
After marking off utility lines, it’s time to decide where exactly on your property the fence is going to be installed and start calculating the amount of fencing materials that you need. If your property is in a subdivision, you probably already have or have access to a blueprint that shows the division of your property. If you do not have one, you might want to think about purchasing a measuring wheel.
Before measuring, keep in mind that a fence post should be installed every six to eight feet. This distance may vary depending on the panel size and style of your fence. DIY fence builders often forget to calculate the posts, which may be the most expensive part of your privacy fence. The posts must be buried at least a yard into the ground with the base set in concrete, adding more to the cost.
If your property boundary is on a slope, the cost can be more since you must install the fence at an angle. You must also dig more, plant the post and add more concrete to balance the fence. This can prove to be a challenging and time-consuming task if you plan to do it yourself. Hiring a professional company will make the job much easier but also, add more to the cost.
Choose the Right Fencing Material
Now, it’s time to choose the materials. Pre-built panels are available for privacy fences that are about six feet high. Vinyl and wooden panels are popular choices among most homeowners. Depending on your preference, styling can easily be done on wooden fences with customizable paint and stains. But you will need to paint them annually to preserve their fresh look.
Vinyl fencing on the other hand requires very little maintenance. They are a bit more costly than wooden ones, but they last longer and therefore, will save you money in the long run on maintenance. Going with the cheapest option in either wood or vinyl, may not always be the best idea. Low quality wood means sooner replacement. Cheaper vinyl means less thickness and often requires more support. Whether you are planning on living there for several years to come or want to increase the resale value of your home, it’s better to invest more initially to ensure the longevity of your privacy fence and it’s wise to keep in mind the maintenance cost in the future.
Deciding to Go DIY or Seek Professional Help
If you are going to do it yourself, you can save the cost of labor. But you must take your time and research a lot before taking the job on yourself. Get help from a friend to reduce the chance of mistakes. Certain important tasks will need to be done which you can never do alone. For example, attaching the panels before the cement around the post gets hardened. It’s better to consider professional help if you want to get the fence installed without any hassle. Cost of labor will add on to your expense, but you can avoid the risk of a DIY job that’s gone wrong.
Most fence installation companies will give you a free estimate. I would advise utilizing this valuable resource if serious about building a privacy fence for you house. If you are in or around the Baton Rouge area, contact A-American Fence Company today; they will come to your property and give you a free estimate.