Friday, July 15, 2011

Building a Backyard Fence

Before building a fence near or on the boundary separating your property from your neighbor's, you need to know exactly where the boundary lines are. Here are a few options, if you're uncertain.

  • The deed to your house should contain a description of the boundary lines.
  • Check with the fencing company to see if they can locate the metal pins in the ground.
  • Review the survey and see if you can contact the company that surveyed your home to come out and stake your property. This is usually less expensive that a new survey.
  • Contact a surveyor and have your property surveyed and staked.

Be sure to also check with your local planning department to see what or if there is a requirement for setback.

Once you know where to build your fence, you have to know what type of fence to build. Be sure you check with your HOA to see if there is a restriction on they type of fencing you are allowed. This has been a costly mistake for many homeowners in the past.

In many areas, fences that are six feet or less in height can be constructed without a building permit. Taller fences might require both a permit and the approval of the local planning department.

A final consideration is what type of building material to use. Wood is by far the most common choice but, vinyl is gaining popularity. Vinyl is more expensive in terms of upfront costs. However, because of vinyl's superior durability and minimal maintenance costs, your investment may be cheaper in the long run.

Some good online resources for building fences include and For a selection of photos of different types of fencing, go to Elyria Fence Inc. To ensure there are no electric, gas or water lines below ground where you to plan to dig the fence post holes, visit Call-Before-You-Dig.


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