7 Residential Fencing Mistakes to Avoid for New Homeowners

March 31, 2024

Thinking about putting up a fence in your yard? Want to make sure you avoid the most common residential fencing mistakes? Adding a fence to a home can often be a great decision that will improve home value and provide enhanced safety and privacy. Unfortunately, however, homeowners sometimes make mistakes when installing fences and they experience a lot of frustration as a result.

If you're thinking about installing a fence in your yard you need to do it right. Here are the top 7 residential fencing mistakes you'll want to avoid making.

1. Not Being Aware of Legal Restrictions

One of the major mistakes that homeowners make when installing a fence is failing to ensure they have met all of the necessary legal requirements for doing so. You should make sure they know exactly where your property lines are so you can avoid making the mistake of installing a fence on your neighbors' property. You should also make sure that you know about all of the local zoning laws and get permission for building and digging as needed.

Additionally, you should also call utility companies and find out where utility lines are in your yard. Make sure that you won't disturb an electricity or plumbing line when digging and installing your fence.

2. Not Measuring a Fence Accurately

When planning a fence build, make sure that you take all of the necessary measurements beforehand. You'll want to take the size of the area into account when installing a fence, but you'll also need to think about fence height as well.

When placing a fence around your yard, you should take care to ensure that fence posts are the right length. Post holes should be accounted for to ensure the fence ends up the right size. If the fence posts aren't long enough, your fence may not serve its purpose very well. Additionally, you'll also want to prepare for any custom cuts that you need to make. This will help you ensure that the fence can fit perfectly within the area that you're covering.

3. Forgetting to Set Posts Correctly

When installing a fence, you also need to make sure that you set the posts correctly. Your fence can experience problems due to inclement weather and seasonal changes, so there should be more than just dirt holding the fence posts in place. 

Fence posts should be aligned properly and set in place either with concrete or with gravel to ensure that the fence is sturdy and held in place securely. If posts are left unsecured, your fence could collapse or could become crooked over time.

To ensure that your fence is sturdy and that it lasts over time, make sure that you have a clear plan for setting your posts. Otherwise, you may regret it later on as your fence starts to collapse and show other signs of damage.

4. Using Poor-Quality Fence Materials

While fences can be made with a variety of materials, you'll need to make sure that whatever material you use is high-quality and will let stand the test of weather and time.

Whether you're installing your fence out of wood, chain, vinyl, or another material, you need to make sure that you're buying your materials from a quality source. Poor quality materials may degrade quickly and experience damage due to weather and the elements. Be sure that you consider material options very carefully and buy from a quality supplier. Avoid using used materials that or scraps to build your fence.

5. Not Treating a Wooden Fence Properly

If you're installing a wooden fence, then it's very important that you don't forget to treat the wood properly. Any wood you use on a fence should be pressure-treated properly to protect it from harm that may occur due to weather conditions and pests such as termites. Without proper treatment, a wooden fence may dry out or experience cracking and splintering.

While wood can make a good option for a fence, you need to make sure that you take the proper care. Never use wood that hasn't been treated and that isn't prepared for being in your yard.

6. Choosing the Wrong Fence For the Job

Another simple mistake that new homeowners make when installing a fence is simply choosing the wrong one for the job.

A tall wooden fence may be a good choice for privacy concerns, for example, but may not be the best option for other needs. A garden, on the other hand, may only need a picket fence. Similarly, chain-link fences can be great for functionality but often don't have the aesthetic appeal that many people prefer for their homes.

It's important that you think about all aspects of your fence installation before building one. Remember that functionality, convenience, and aesthetics all play a part in choosing the right fence for your needs.

7. Not Hiring Professional Contractors

One of the biggest mistakes that new homeowners make when installing a fence is that they try to do everything themselves or they hire the wrong team for the job.

If your home fence has been installed improperly, it can be difficult and costly to repair later on. Because of this, you should make sure that you get your fence installation right during the very first attempt. Ensure that any contractors you hire know what they're doing and have years of proven experience in your area.

Additionally, while building a fence can be done DIY, it's easy to make mistakes.  It's typically best to choose qualified professionals to help with a fence installation to ensure that measurements are correct, the fence posts are set properly, and that everything is as it should be.

Avoiding These Residential Fencing Mistakes

While installing a home fence can be a great idea and can serve a variety of purposes, there are some mistakes that you'll definitely want to avoid making. Be sure that you avoid the residential fencing mistakes above if you want to have an easy and straightforward time installing a home fence.

Looking for reliable contractors who can help with your fencing needs? Click here to learn more about our residential fencing services and what we can offer you.