Do I need a survey before installing a fence?
January 9, 2018

Step into your backyard, and take a look around. The first thing you’ll notice is the expanse of your lawn, and if you’re lucky, the accessories you’ve installed like a pool or your barbecue. Something else you might notice is just how many windows are looking down on your yard. How many of your neighbors can see you, and how vulnerable you are to people driving by. There’s nothing to keep your little kingdom safe from prying eyes. After some consideration, you decide the best course of action is to put up a privacy fence.

Before you do that, though, there are a few questions you need to answer.

Question #1: What Will the Privacy Fence Screen?

A privacy fence is a bulwark against invasion. It provides cover, and blocks line of sight. Privacy fences are built solid, meaning no prying eyes can see through. This being said, you need to ask what kind of privacy fence you’re looking for. The 2 most popular varieties that we install are made of vinyl (pvc), in a plethora of different¬†color options, and wood. Our vinyl fences are made from 100% pure virgin vinyl and our wood fences are built with western red cedar pickets of the highest quality. We’ll talk about this more later. For most residential fences, your fence will be 6 feet tall, but other height options are certainly available. Which bring us to our next question…

Question #2: Are There Any Rules You Have To Follow?

We tend to think of our homes as our private little parts of the world, but homeowners are not exempt from following rules regarding fences, even if it’s something as simple as a privacy fence.

The first place you need to check is with your local property owners’ association if you have one. Often there are specific rules you have to follow regarding your property, and what kind of fence you are (or are not) allowed to have will be laid out in the rules and bylaws. If you aren’t part of a POA, though, you should contact your local government to see if there are any ordinances regarding privacy fences. Because the last thing you want to do is go through the rigmarole of measuring, buying, and building, just to be told that you need to take your fence down. Then, to add insult to injury, you have to pay a fine on top of everything. The most common restriction regarding privacy fences is height. While most ordinances will allow fences up to 6 feet tall, there are always exceptions. But don’t worry, we will work with you and your local government or POA to help ensure that no bylaws will be broken as a result of your fence installation.

Question #3: What is Your Budget?

Home improvements don’t grow on trees; you need to know what you’re willing to spend, and what options that gives you. If you have a small lot, or a big budget, or both, then you might find the sky is the limit. Having a little cushion in your budget is always a good idea as well. While things can go wrong, we take every step to ensure that they don’t. Every job will be marked for electric, gas, and water lines before the job starts, and our installers will go over any other underground lines (irrigation) with you as well to avoid any potential problems. That being said, the price given on your estimate is the price you will pay at the end of the job. We aren’t going to surprise you with any hidden costs.

Question #4: What Material Do You Want Your Privacy Fence Made From?

The most common privacy fences we install are 6 foot wood and vinyl. Our vinyl fences are made from 100% pure virgin vinyl, meaning it wont discolor or fade over time. The privacy panels come with a wide variety of decorative tops and are available in almost every color imaginable including several wood grain finishes. Our vinyl privacy fences are manufactured with a metal reinforcement channel in the bottom rail to create a stronger and longer lasting fence. We even offer a wind kit which can sustain winds of up to 75mph for high velocity wind areas. Although we don’t need to worry too much about hurricanes in eastern Pennsylvania, the option is available if needed.

Wood privacy fences are also very common. What separates our wood fences from our competitors is we “stick build” our wood fences 1 picket at a time, we do not use prefabricated sections This means that we can take the extra steps to meet your specific needs while still keeping your fence looking as aesthetically pleasing as possible . Maybe you have a tiny dog who likes to dig. Not a problem, we can keep the pickets tight to the ground even over the most turbulent terrain. With prefabricated sections, this is not possible. We also use the highest quality wood to build our fences. The pickets themselves are made from western red cedar, which does not need to be stained or treated. The pickets are 1 inch thick and come in different width options. It also smells great and helps keeps the bugs away!

Question #5: What Challenges Does Your Yard Offer?

Your privacy fence doesn’t exist in a vacuum; it has to accommodate your yard. So if you have a lot of trees, that could be a problem. Even if they’re saplings now, your fence is going to be standing when they start stretching out their branches. You’ll need to be able to cut your grass, as well, and a privacy fence could be an extra obstacle for that task. Is your yard flat, or is it built on a hill? What kind of weather-related challenges will you have to deal with? Whether it’s snow, sleet, monsoons, or hot, dry summers, you need to ask how all of those things are going to impact your fence choice.

These are, of course, just a handful of the issues homeowners have to consider before they install a privacy fence on their property. If you aren’t sure whether a privacy fence is right for you, all you need to do is contact us today. Our fencing experts are here to answer your questions, and to help you find the ideal fence for your needs.

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