Should you Fence your Yard?

22 May 2024

Any changes in your property means you are putting out some cash and you will hope to reap the benefits from that outlay in your own comfort or convenience and then again when you decide to sell.  Not all changes may be worth the time and cost and you should carefully consider your own needs and wants.  This includes putting a fence in your landscaping.

As these things go, there are pros and cons to this addition.


  • Safety – For small children and many pets, having an enclosed area prevents them from running into the street or scampering through a neighbor’s property. It is also often a deterrent to strangers or animals coming onto your property.  Most municipalities have regulations about fencing in pool areas.  If you also have ponds or water features, you should check into any rules about safety for those areas as well.
  • Privacy – Depending upon the lay of the land, type of fencing material, and height of the enclosure, you can affect a degree of privacy from nosy neighbors or from a clear view from the street. It can go a long way to ensuring quality time for you, your family, and friends.
  • Noise – If you live on a busy street or near a highway, adding a high, solid fence will considerably reduce the noise pollution. Some statistics show that you can decrease the sound by 60% to even 85%.
  • Boundary – Just like a fence can keep your pooch in your own backyard, the same can be said for keeping your neighbors’ pups from enjoying your lawn. It also clearly defines your property and responsibility from others.
  • Landscaping – A fence can certainly be a design element from both sides. From the exterior, it can be attractive and possibly add to the value of your home, depending on the style and neighborhood.  From the interior, you have many choices like painting, including murals, storage, and vertical gardening.

should you fence your yard?


  • Expense – Adding a fence to your landscaping is not cheap. The actual cost will depend on many elements, including
    • Materials
    • Labor
    • Style
    • Height
    • Length
    • Gates

You may want to consider a survey of the property to be sure you are within your own lines and not encroaching on a neighbor.

  • Maintenance – Although there are now manufactured products that keep maintenance to a minimum, most will require staining or painting, cleaning, sealing, or damage repair.
  • Conflict – So, your neighbor already has a fence, but you want a different kind. How will it look to have your six-foot privacy fence next to a chain link?  Or, vice versa?  Does your subdivision have convenants that regulate the kind or size of fencing?  Will you need approval from the Home Owners’ Association?  If you live in a wooded or rural area, you should check with local Fish and Game people to be sure you will not be in violation of some regulation that allows wildlife free access or that would cause them to become entrapped or injured.
  • Inconvenience – Mowing and trimming along a fence line can be tricky. It is easy for a mower to get caught along the wooden slats or bang into the chain link.  Hand trimming is even more time consuming.


“Good fences make good neighbors” according to Robert Frost.  While that may be so in farming communities, and from a metaphorical sense it is a good idea to have boundaries between each other, actually constructing a fence on your property may or may not be right for you.  This is not an easy decision, so give it some real thought.


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