Spring is here, and before the days get too hot here in Atlanta, I wanted to get my fence built. Although tempted to DIY this myself, it is simply way too much work for one person. I have 380 linear feet of fencing required to go around the back of my yard to the sides of my home.
Although I liked the open space in my yard, there are a few reasons I wanted to get a fence.
- Kids are getting to that age where they want to play outside all the time, so I wanted them to have a safe place to kick the ball around without having to worry about them running onto the road.
- We get a lot of deer, so a fence would allow me to have a garden with the flowers I want without worrying about the deer eating them.
- Eventually we want to have an outdoor living area, and really a fence is the first step in that plan.
Backyard Privacy Fence Quotes
Once you have decided to get a fence, you should definitely shop around. I had a few recommendations from neighbors who had built their fences a couple of years ago. I called about 7 different fence builders to get quotes. What I learned is the price varies fairly significantly between them, and also depending on the time of year the cost of the wood also swings a lot.
I was seeing prices now were about 25% - 30% more than what some of my neighbors payed (per ft) only 2 years ago. Also, between builders, the price for 380 l.ft would vary between $9,000 - $12,000.
Somehow, the last builder I got a quote from came out the cheapest, at $7,900. I knew of 3 other homes in my neighborhood who had used them, and they were very happy with their fence so I knew this would be a good choice. I went with them.
Now, when getting your backyard privacy fence quotes, make sure you are aware of any HOA rules, or county permits you have to abide by. In my case, our fence had to be a privacy fence, 6ft high, with 6x6 dado posts. I was also required to be at least 18ft from the back of the curb since I own a corner lot. This narrows down what options I have for the fence, but nevertheless this fence is gorgeous. If you have more options, then decide what type of fence you want so that you can compare the quotes more accurately. It’s unfair trying to compare apples to oranges.
Backyard Privacy Fence Gates
Consider how many gates you want in your privacy fence. Typically, most homeowners will add a gate on the fence near their garage for easy access. I decided to also add a gate on the other side of my home so I have easy access to the HVAC units that are there, as well as being able to pull my hose from around the back of the house on that side. Lastly, I added a wider gate near the street at the back of my yard.
That gave my two benefits:
- It is a wider gate allowing my to haul larger items.
- The yard is flatter there compared to by my garage, which makes it easier when hauling heavy items.
- Gives me easy access to the community pool and mailboxes, etc.
Getting Privacy Fence Approval
Once you have selected the builder to go with, they should draw up a rough sketch of the fence with dimensions, and where it sits relative to your house, along with wood/style selection and pricing.
You will need to submit that to your HOA. If you don’t have an HOA, then check with your city and county as they may have rules restricting where you can build a fence and what it can look like from the street.
Submit your documents to your board, and wait for approval before work starts. You can try to message your board directly to see if they can fast track your approval if time is of the essence.
Privacy Fence Construction
Once you have approval, the builder will schedule when they can come out and get started. For my 380 ft fence, it took them two days to complete. You will also want to get a land survey done if you are not 100% certain of your property line. These surveys can range from $200 for a simple land marking, to $600 for a full land survey with paperwork. I recommend getting this done to avoid building a fence over your neighbor’s property line which might create easement issues in the future.
The first day was mounting each post in cement in the ground. After digging each hole to the required depth, the post was put in the whole. The corner posts were the first to be cemented. Pour the cement into the hole, then place the post into the cement, ensuring the required post height above the ground is visible. Once each corner post is in, tie a string between the two posts so that you can align the rest of the posts in a straight line between the two points.
The second day was putting up the pickets. Basically the guys align the pickets on the rails and using their air pressure nail gun, rapidly nailed each picket into place. Making sure each picket was vertical and lined up against each other. They left the last picket on each section for the end as they needed to be trimmed to size depending on how much space was left between the second to last picket and the post. They trimmed it with an electric hand saw, and attached it.
I created a cool timelapse of my privacy fence construction below, using my outdoor nest cam.
Next with this backyard privacy fence will be staining it the same color as our deck (Sherwin Williams - Hawthorne). We do need to let the new wood dry out first before staining, which means waiting at minimum 8 weeks, ideal 1 - 2 seasons. So that step will probably happen in the fall when the temperatures cool down a bit.
I’ll also be starting construction on the backyard garden and patio, so stay tuned and I will for sure post about that DIY project when I get to it.
But for now, I am heading outside to play catch with my son!
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