Choosing the Right Fencing for your Home

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Fencing is one of those projects that gets put on the back burner, delayed indefinitely until it’s finally forgotten. This usually happens because we want to make sure we place the fence correctly. This can lead to delays in researching property lines or hesitancy due to concerns that you may later wish you had placed the fence somewhere else.

For some people, though, the delay is due to uncertainty about what type of fence to use. It seems there are new materials and methods on the market every day, so the more you research fencing, the more difficult it may become to make a decision.

Despite the endless variety of exact fence types, there are only a few basic materials involved. Let’s look at those, and then you may be able to narrow down the exact specifications from there.

Steel & Wrought Iron

When it comes to strength, these materials top the list. They also provide a classic beauty that evokes the architecture of New Orleans or Paris. Steel and wrought iron are secure, making them difficult materials for intruders to get past.

The big criticism of steel has always been that it can rust, but that is changing. New alloys, assembled using new techniques like Friction Stir Welding for strength and durability, are now available to give you all the benefits of steel without the corrosion that leads to streaky runoff paths and weaker fences.

Wood

The most common alternative to steel is wood. The most widely-used material in most aspects of residential construction, wood is a very popular choice for fencing. Wood provides a warmer, more inviting look and can also provide greater privacy than wrought iron.

Like steel, wood has faced issues with its durability. Even a well-painted wooden fence would eventually fall victim to the elements, or even to termites. However, pressure-treated lumber can greatly extend that usable life, giving you more years of worry-free service from a wooden fence than had previously been possible.

Masonry

This category encompasses a broad range of materials. Everything from poured concrete to brick and manufactured block can be used for fencing. Any concerns about corrosion, rot, or insects are not an issue with masonry. It can also provide full privacy without so much as a knothole for intruding eyes. It can handle the impacts of string trimmers and persistent pets without a moment’s trouble.

The major problem with masonry is cost, with its weight running close behind. Masonry fences are typically labor-intensive, running up installation expense. Their weight can also cause them to settle over the years, creating cracks and possibly causing the fence to lean or even fall.

A good fence can provide a lot of benefits to your home. It can keep pets and kids safely where they can go. It will enhance privacy at your swimming pool or party. It will also establish a more secure perimeter around your home, going a long way toward keeping thieves from not only accessing your property but also from even knowing what you have on the premises.

Choosing to build a fence is a decision you may have delayed for a long time. Once you pull the trigger and start planning it, don’t let yourself be overwhelmed by the options. Instead, narrow it down to your chosen material first, and then consider the designs that are possible with those materials. You’ll do a better job of selecting the right fence and staying on budget, all while accomplishing what you’ve set out to do.

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