Marking your borders
Perimeter fences show others where the border of your property ends. This type of fence is popular in neighborhoods where the houses are close together and space is at a premium. Perimeter fences are also a smart choice if you've got small children or pets and want to keep them in a contained area when they're outside.
Types of Perimeter Fences
When you're looking for a perimeter fence, take into consideration its function and how it will blend with the exterior of your house. Some of the more common perimeter fences include:
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- Privacy fences - Meant to block outsiders' view into your yard, privacy fences are constructed with the slats set in a slightly overlapping pattern or with slats flush against one another. The overlapping pattern is usually preferred over flush slats as the flush slats can make a yard look smaller and the rigid line doesn't blend well with a natural environment.
- Ornamental fences - If you just want to mark the border of your property and keep neighborhood kids from running across your front lawn, an ornamental fence is a smart idea. These smaller, less expensive designs are easy to install as they can usually just be pushed into the ground. If you're looking for a fence with a regal look, some homeowners build post-and-column fences that use impressive brick or concrete columns in place of standard fence posts. Between the columns, homeowners will often use mortar with rocks or bricks to build a low, boundary-marking wall.
- Aluminum fences - Used to denote a boundary or to keep people out of a certain area, aluminum fences are attractive but provide no privacy. Thin aluminum rods are spaced fairly close together and are supported by aluminum cross-beams. You'll often find these fences around pools or blocking off unsafe areas without obstructing the view.
- Chain-link fences - An inexpensive way to keep intruders out or children and pets in, chain link fences provide a barrier without blocking the view. However, chain link fences are easy to climb and can snag pet collars. Plant shrubs along the fence to help disguise it, and to make it harder to climb and safer for pets.
- Deer fences - A fairly unobtrusive barrier, a deer fence easily blends in with vegetation but keeps deer out of flowerbeds and vegetable gardens. Deer fences are made of a wire mesh that's easy to install and needs little more than a few stakes and zip ties to assemble. A deer fence should be tall enough that deer can't leap over it and into your garden. For the first few weeks your fence is in place, tie white cloths to the mesh so deer can see it and don't become entangled in it. Once the deer know where the fence is, you can take the cloths down.
Perimeter fences are an easy way to mark the boundary of your property and keep others out. Look for materials that blend well with your yard and use shrubs or flower beds to soften the look of any hard angles.