|Vinyl fences are some of the most durable, long lasting, and best looking fences available to homeowners today.
It's easy to see why vinyl fences are quickly becoming a favorite fencing material for homeowners across the country.
A fence is more than just a barrier. Used in imaginative ways, it can become an architectural feature that blends well with the style of your house, a landscape element that enhances the appearance of your property, or an accent piece that helps define a part of your yard or garden.In The Fence Bible hands-on home improvement expert Jeff Beneke provides an in-depth, comprehensive how-to encyclopedia that enables homeowners to choose and build the fences and gates that are best for their landscape—both for appearance and function.Beneke suggests the appropriate types of fence to keep the swimming pool secure, confine the livestock, keep deer away from the garden, or create outdoor living spaces. He then discusses the essentials of proper fence design and provides step-by-step illustrated instructions for planning, building, maintaining, and repairing any style of fence.
Privacy, security, curb appeal, noise reduction: The benefits of residential fences are numerous.There also are plenty of practical reasons for a fence. "The place I always suggest starting with (is) function," says Jeff Beneke, author of "The Fence Bible."
Here's a look at what fences can do and how you can build or select the right one for your budget. AVAILABLE on Amazon, Ebay, Barnes & Noble, and Google Books
Security Fence: Even a fence only 3 feet tall can help deter prowlers, says Chris McGoey, a security expert in Los Angeles. "It is psychological," he says. "A fence denotes a property.
It says, 'This is my house, my property.' People are going to be reluctant to step over that fence. Even a small boundary fence will discourage people from cutting across your yard.
Privacy Fencing: Living your life shielded from the prying eyes of others is a luxury of private property. A high privacy fence, tastefully built, can give you room to let down your hair, no matter how small your deck or yard.
Decoration: A well-designed, professionally installed fence will frame your home and add tremendous curb appeal. It may also enhance your property value, depending on your neighborhood and the fence's design and quality.
Boundary: It's a good idea to define your boundaries, especially if you own a small lot. A fence prevents neighbors from encroaching on your property.
Safety: A fence offers peace of mind. They keep small children and pets safe from strangers, traffic and hazards such as swimming pools, high bluffs and ravines.
Weather protection: Snow fences keep drifts from growing too large. A protective fence lets you enjoy a garden or deck in a windy area; Beneke says he likes a louvered fence for taming a windy patio.
Noise: A privacy fence can buffer some noise. Wood blocks noise better than most fence materials. Planting a hedge or other tall vegetation in front of the fence helps buffer noise even further. For serious noise protection, professional fence specialists offer noise-buffering blankets that can be pulled tightly over any fence. Costs for these products start at about $12 per linear foot for a 6-foot-tall fence.
The most effective fence for dulling sound is a tall, custom-built fence of foam-filled aluminum or composite, says Chris Policastro, vice president of operations at Production Fenceworks in Atlanta. This kind of fence costs $60 to $300 per linear foot for a 6-foot fence.
Cosmetics: Trash cans? Propane gas tanks? The neighbor's trampoline? A large or small fence may hide it. It's like putting makeup on a pimple, Beneke says. Planting a vine or shrub in front of it makes it even prettier.
Once you have a list of your fencing needs, take your specs to a professional fence contracting company and talk it over with experts. Even if you build your fence yourself, it helps to bounce ideas around and ensure you have the right expectations for your fence materials, design law and specifications in your individual rural, suburban or urban location.
Here's a scenario: Farmers who've built 6' high enclosures soon learn that deer can jump 8 feet. To remedy that issue take into account that an overhanging extension or one of the deer-fence ideas from Leonard Perry, extension professor at the University of Vermont, may be a viable solution.
In another scenario, Homeowners have installed chain-link and vinyl fences only to finding out that their homeowners association (HOA) bans them. So make sure you arm yourself with knowledge going into your fence project.
Fence costs can sometimes be steep. A lot of material and labor is involved. But costs always vary depending on your preffered materials and style. You can cut fence costs by and by choosing local species of wood. Get a couple estimates, look at thheir websites and credential when selecting a contractor.
Beneke, a proponent of doing it yourself, nevertheless says he warns against getting into a job that's too big for your skills or your time. Building a fence is a big job, and you deserve to have a fence that fits you and your needs.
(TO BE CONTINUED NEXT WEEK'S FENCE POST: PART 2: A FENCE THAT FITS: BUILDING THE RIGHT FENCE FOR YOU AND YOUR BUDGET.)
*Safety covers for spas and hot tubs meeting ASTM F1346 may be substituted for barriers*
Virginia, Maryland, and North Carolina all have relatively similar pool fence codes and adhere to three basic guidelines regarding proper installation and layout of pool fences:
1) All pool fences are to be at least 4’ in height
2) Fence gates must be self-closing and self-latching
3) Pool fences can be no higher than 2” from off the ground, making for a minimal gap between the bottom of the gate and the ground
Fence codes vary depending on the city and state where one a fence is to be erected. It is important to understand the specific fence building requirements for a localized area. The local building ordinances can range from very strict to rather loose depending on the area authority. They can cover specific aspects of fence plan including height, style, color and location. Again, these codes can vary from city to city as well as neighborhood to neighborhood. Therefore, before proceeding with any plans for a new fence it is very important to check with the areas Homeowners Association (HOA), as well as the city and state governments. The city or county building code office is where you would actually begin. YES, erecting a fence does require a building permit.
For most people the goal of installing a pool fence is protecting their privacy and to create a safety barrier around their backyard oasis. More than a savvy idea, having a fence around a pool is required by pool fence codes in most places. The liability of an unsupervised child accidently gaining access to your pool, could spell personal and financial disaster. Adequately securing your swimming area is vital for everyone’s safety and is your responsibility as a pool owner. Having an obvious barrier to the open water of a pool is imperative to the safety and security of all involved. Be SMART; do not let your pool become a hazard.
With over 16 years of professional fence experience we are very excited to be involved in this years Virgnia Beach Home & Flower show! At the start of this 2001 spring season, we looking forward to developing ongoing relationships within the local community. We are proudly showing off our great line of ActiveYards residential fences. Our professional sales team will be ready to answer any and all of your residential fence questions at booth number 328 at the show. Talk to us and get your FREE ESTIMATE for your very own backyard fence design.
As you begin your search you will notice there are many different styles to consider. Not all of these styles will meet pool codes at 4 feet high. The first rule to consider is that the distance between the bottom rail and the next rail (if you are looking at a 3 or 4 rail fence) or top rail needs to be a minimum of 45 inches. Naturally if you are looking at a 3 or 4 rail style of fence you will need to choose a fence taller than 4 feet tall. There are several styles of 3 rail fences that will meet pool code regulations at 54 inches tall. Again, at this height make sure of the distance between the bottom rail and the next rail at the top. Naturally speaking, if you have your mind set on a fence that is as short as possible, your choices of styles are going to be a little limited.