Because of the amount of information to discuss regarding fences, we are going to divide Fences into 3 articles:
- Selecting the Right Type of Fence
- Selecting the Materials for Your Fence
- Things to Consider Before Starting Your Fence
When choosing the type of fence that is right for you, it is a good idea to, firstly, consider the primary reason, or reasons, you want a fence; and secondly, consider some of the secondary functions you want the fence to provide.
Carefully evaluating the location, function and expectations of your fence will better insure you are satisfied with your decisions for years to come.
Primary Functions of Fences:
- Privacy – designed to create and audio or visual barrier between you and the properties around you.
- Safety or security – designed to keep your home and family safe by keeping intruders (people or animals) from entering your yard. This would include safety barriers like pool fences.
- Enclosure or Containment – designed to keep children or pets from leaving your yard.
- Ornamental or Decoration – designed to add some style, elegance or visual appeal to your home and property. (Picket fences, ornamental iron fences and some vinyl fences).
- To mark boundary Lines – designed to communicate boundaries to neighbors that may not respect them.
SECONDARY FUNCTIONS OF FENCES:
- To block noise – whether a neighbor that likes to entertain, road traffic, mechanical equipment like air conditioners or pool pumps, or near by factory.
- To block wind / snow -
- To hide stuff – boats, recreational or utility trailers, pool equipment, A/C units
- To create areas for sports
- Landscaping Features.
- To separate areas within your yard – garden, pool, outdoor kitchen, areas for pets.
While selecting one type and style of fence for your entire yard will certainly make your fence project less complicated, it may not provide the ideal results for your property. In fact, it is possible that the right fence for your property might consist of numerous types and styles of fences. For ideal results, consider each side or section of your yard individually.
For example, if you have a pool in your backyard, then you will need a fence designed to keep people out which conforms to the local pool enclosure by-laws. However, you may also want the fence on each side of to provide some privacy from the neighbors while maintaining a clear view of the forest behind your property. You may also want to separate the pool area from the rest of your yard without making it feel separate from your yard. You may not be looking at one type of fence…you may be looking at two or three types of fences.
Having different types of fences does not mean the fences will not match or complement each other. You can select different types of fences with similar styles. Effective planning will ensure your fence is both functional and looks great.
If you are planning your entire backyard, try to compliment the design of your fence to the design of your deck and railing. After all a railing is just another type of fence.
Neighbors can add a whole new twist to planning your fence project, especially if you are sharing costs. Effective communication prior to starting your fence project could result in neighbor friendly designs which avoid potential feuds. Many wars have been started over boundary lines.
Whatever its purpose, a fence can function in many ways, but the first step is deciding what you’re looking for to choose one that works for you.
Remember to look for our article next week on selecting the right material for your fence.