Best Type of Fence for Your Yard

If you’re looking to fence in your yard, there are tons of options to choose between, ranging from wood and vinyl privacy fences to metal panels and bamboo. The best fence type for your home is one that complements your home’s style and meets the needs of your family.

If you choose correctly, fences can achieve several objectives at once, keeping kids and pets inside and unwanted guests out, while adding to your home’s aesthetic appeal. We’re looking at some of the most common types of fencing to help you build one that’s right for your family.

What Type of Fence is Best for Your Yard?

Some of the top reasons for building fences are maintaining privacy and protecting your property, but there are numerous reasons to build one. Since there are so many options for fencing, it’s important to understand what you’re trying to accomplish with a fence before you choose the best one for your yard.

Here are some common reasons for getting a fence:

  • Create privacy
  • Provide safety and security
  • Enhance landscaping features
  • Establish property boundaries
  • Contain pets and livestock
  • Create a sound barrier
  • Create shade
  • Block dust and wind

Security fencing, privacy fencing, and specialty fencing are all popular choices. For best results, be sure to explore the following fence materials before you decide on a style and type of fence that best suits your needs.

Security Fences

Security fences are an easy solution to protect your home and property from intruders or unwanted visitors. If your main reason for fencing is security, metal security fences are your best option. You can choose from chain-link, steel, aluminum, and wrought iron fences.

Chain-Link Fences

chain link fence

Chain-link fencing is the most common type of security fence. These fences are budget-friendly, durable, and relatively easy to install. They also come in a variety of heights and configurations and require very little maintenance.

However, there are some disadvantages to chain-link fencing. For starters, they lack the aesthetic appeal of other fence types, and they’re also not private unless you add wire mesh, bamboo screens, or privacy slats. You can also plant confederate jasmine, which will eventually grow and transform into a hedge along your fence.

For commercial properties, correctional facilities, and industrial buildings, chain-link fences are a great option. Since they’re less attractive than other fence types, you may be less inclined to use this type of fence for a residential property. Although, their low cost, easy installation, and durability make them a popular choice among homeowners.

Aluminum Fences

aluminum fence

Aluminum fences are another type of metal security fence. This type is one of the best options for homeowners looking for a combination of aesthetic appeal, durability, and affordability. It’s lightweight and durable, and provides security without sacrificing your view.

Steel Fences

Steel fences provide medium-level security while resisting rust, corrosion, and chipping. If you’re looking for a long-lasting fence that requires very little maintenance and looks great for years, consider a steel fence.

Wrought Iron Fences

wrought iron fence

Wrought iron fences add a ton of value to your home thanks to their excellent security and unmatched elegance. They’re one of the most attractive metal security fences, often being the focal point of an entire property.

Wrought iron fencing dons elaborate finials and ornate features, making it highly customizable. However, it’s expensive and requires more maintenance than other metal fences. If it’s in your budget, the timeless appeal of wrought iron will more than offset the cost and maintenance requirements.

Privacy Fences

Privacy fencing is essential for homeowners who would like to maintain their personal space and create a private oasis. Privacy fences mean you don’t have to worry about nosy neighbors, unsightly views, or loud noises. They also establish property boundaries and contain children and pets, making your family safer.

Standard Wooden Fencing

wooden privacy fence

When privacy is a primary concern, standard wooden fences have a lot to offer. They are one of the most common types of fencing for backyard privacy. They’re affordable, durable, and attractive, as well as customizable with a coat of paint or natural stain to complement your home’s exterior.

While lumber costs can vary, there’s a wood fence to fit almost every budget. Combining different wood types can help you reduce your overall cost. For instance, you can use pressure-treated lumber for posts and fir rails to support cedar or redwood pickets.

While wood may require more maintenance than other types of fencing, it’s not as difficult to paint or fix them. If you have any DIY experience, wood fence repairs are much easier than other types of yard fences.

Composite Fences

composite fence

Composite fencing is a good alternative to standard wooden fencing. Compared to wood, this material is durable and looks good for years, and you can also choose from a variety of colors and styles.

It’s also environmentally friendly, being made from recycled materials. Also, unlike treated wood, composite fencing has no toxic additives. Once it reaches the end of its lifespan, you can recycle this material again.

Ornate Wooden Fences

ornate wood fence

Decorative features like wood finials and lattice paneling can add a pop of style to ordinary wooden fences. Wood’s versatility leads to a number of options, leading to extraordinary results when you pair high-quality wood with interesting design features.

Swapping out the standard vertical orientation of panels to horizontal or diagonal is one way to give your wooden fence some unique character. You can also use chevron patterns and combinations of wood and metal to give your fence a customized style.

Semi-Privacy Fences

semi-privacy fence

Semi-privacy fences provide a sense of privacy and style to your outdoor space. There are tons of fencing options in this category, giving you the option between different fence styles and privacy levels.

Semi-privacy fences offer an airy feel, creating a boundary that doesn’t feel like you’re shutting out your surroundings. These fences offer a level of privacy, but the pickets or slats are far enough part to allow air through.

There are several affordable and attractive semi-privacy fence types in a variety of materials, including wood, vinyl, and metal. When privacy and security aren’t your main focuses when building a fence, you have more options. For a more unique fence, you can use a combination of fencing materials and styles.

Vinyl Fencing

vinyl fence

Vinyl fencing is one of the top choices for homeowners because it is low-maintenance, long-lasting, and customizable. Even though this type of fencing is more expensive than wood, people often choose vinyl fencing because it doesn’t splinter, rot, or invite insects.

You also don’t have to paint or stain vinyl, which is hard to beat when you factor in the cost of maintenance and repairs.

Lattice Fences

lattice fence

Lattice fencing is made from wood, vinyl, or metal. These highly decorative panels pair well with many types of designs. It’s often used to create a border or complement landscaping features. While it isn’t a great choice for privacy, it can still enhance your exterior by acting as a trellis for vines.

Louvered Fences

louvered fence

Louvered fence panels can either be purchased, or built by setting fence pickets at an angle. Louvered fencing allows air to flow freely into your property while blocking out heavy winds. This style of fence also offers privacy for your family when viewed at most angles.

Metal Panels

metal panel fence

You can use metal in a number of ways to create a semi-private fence. It pairs well with concrete, brick, stone, wood, and many other materials to create beautiful and modern designs. You can find metal fence panels in a variety of designs, ranging from linear planks to laser-cut panels.

Wooden Picket Fences

wooden picket fence

Wooden picket fences, especially white ones, are an iconic fence type that still holds sway over homeowners. These fences evoke thoughts of a peaceful and joyful life for many Americans.

While classic wooden picket fences don’t offer very much in the privacy department, people are drawn to its aesthetic appeal. Plus, it’s fairly cost-effective while still keeping unwanted guests from walking through your property. It also complements beautifully with shrubs and flowers.

Vinyl Picket Fences

vinyl picket fence

If you crave a similar aesthetic to wooden picket fences, vinyl picket fences are an excellent alternative. They’re nice-looking, adding to your home’s curb appeal, while also establishing property lines. In most instances, they achieve the same cottage-garden feel as their wood counterparts.

While vinyl does cost slightly more than wood, many people choose it because it’s low-maintenance and long-lasting.

Specialty Fences

If you need a fence designed for a specific application or purpose, you may need a specialty fence. Common examples include bamboo, wire, and masonry.

Bamboo Fences

bamboo fence

Bamboo, combined with wood, can create a natural, tropical look to complete your outdoor space. You can shape bamboo in a variety of styles ranging from simple to ornate. It’s a strong material that is both easy to install and maintain.

As a fast-growing plant, bamboo is one of the least expensive options for fencing. However, it’s not as durable as wood, so it’s a good idea to reseal it every 2-3 years for a longer lifespan.

Masonry Fences

masonry fence

Masonry fences are versatile, giving you the option to use brick, concrete, stucco, or natural stone. You will often find it in residential settings, and its durable design makes it extremely long-lasting.

If your yard is on the smaller side, masonry fencing might not be the best for you, however, it’s durable, attractive, and helps reduce outside sound. Because of the versatility of masonry, you have many design options and it pairs well with tons of different aesthetics.

Wire Fences

wire fence

Wire fencing comes in four common types: welded, woven, barbed, and electric. Wire is often used on farms to contain livestock and keep out deer and other pests.

These fences are low-cost and make great perimeter fences for large properties. People sometimes use a combination of wire fencing types to create a multi-purpose fence.

If you’re thinking about a wire fence for your yard, make sure to consider the quality of the construction. Some box wire fencing made with welded metal panels and wooden posts can be pretty stylish without breaking the bank. Even a simple wire fence can go the extra mile in attractiveness when properly built and maintained.

FAQs About Types of Fences

What is the cheapest type of fencing?

Wire mesh fencing is the cheapest type of fencing. Several wire fences like chain-link are among the least expensive fences for your yard. This type of fence is also easy to install, making it popular with homeowners.

What type of fence lasts the longest?

Wrought iron fences, when properly maintained, can last for centuries. Masonry fences can also exceed 100 years. The fences that last the longest are usually the ones that cost the most to install.

However, if you’re looking for something more budget-friendly that still has a pretty long lifespan, chain-link fencing is one of the cheapest types available and can last 25 to 30 years, and sometimes more.

Can I build an 8-foot fence?

Before building an 8-foot fence, check local building regulations or HOA rules. Most privacy fences range from 6 to 8 feet tall, so installing an 8-foot vinyl fence with panels is relatively easy.

What type of fence is low maintenance?

Vinyl fences are essentially no-maintenance fences, making them very popular. Other than cleaning and minor repairs, you don’t need to exert any extra effort to take care of vinyl fencing.

Aluminum fences are another type of low-maintenance fencing.

What is the best fencing to keep dogs in?

If your dog is a digger, climber, chewer, or some other type of escape artist, they can find a way out of almost any fence. The best type of fencing to keep your dog in depends on your dog. For jumpers and climbers, consider a tall privacy fence. For chewers and diggers, a metal fence dug into the ground might deter escaping.

What is the easiest fencing to install?

Chain-link fencing is one of the easiest fence types to install, with a simple process and minimal tools required. You can use an auger to dig the post holes, fill them with concrete, and string the chain-link fencing between the posts.

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