Fence Installation Professionals

A resource for finding the best residential and commercial fence contractors

Common Questions When Choosing a Fence Contractor

So you are thinking about getting a fence installed and before you find a fence contractor, you’ve got questions. We are going to do our best to answer some of the most common questions we get. Any large home improvement project can be stressful, especially when there is a financial commitment.

We understand and it’s important to know that installing a fence on your property provides a tremendous amount of value. Your home will be more secure, you’ll gain a new level of privacy, and you will likely increase the value of your property. Security, privacy and investment tend to be the three main reasons homeowners and businesses consider fencing in their properties. What’s yours?

Fence Styles

There are three popular choices for residential fencing, wood, vinyl and aluminum. Wood fencing appeals to people because of its relatively low cost per linear foot but it’s important to consider that wood, when subjected to weather conditions can deteriorate over time. Careful planning and care will extend the life of the wood and keep the fence looking great. Vinyl fencing provides both a great look and offers long lasting appearance.

Unlike wood, vinyl does not deteriorate when subject to weather conditions, so you can expect a vinyl fence to look great for a long time. Aluminum fence, like vinyl, will also look great for a long time because it is manufactured to withstand the elements.

Aluminum fence doesn’t provide the same level of privacy as wood or vinyl but looks incredibly beautiful on a property border.

Let’s get to the questions that many people have before having a fence contractor do an installation on their property.

Residential Fence Installation FAQ

What about my neighbors?
It’s very considerate of you to consider your neighbors. We recommend letting them know that you are planning on having a fence installed on your property. More than likely the will be perfectly fine with your project. In the rare instance were they have an issue with it, remember that the fence installation is on your property and as long as you follow local or community guidelines, it is your business. If your property shares a border with your neighbor, you might be lucky enough to have them split the cost with you.

Should my neighbor and I split the cost of the fence on a shared border?
That’s a tricky question and here’s why…many city and towns require the fence to be installed with a “setback”, meaning not exactly on a property line. This means that if you are splitting the cost, you and your neighbor have to decide which property the fence will go on. You can use logic and reasoning or simply toss a coin…but in many cases, the fence will require the setback. So if you are going to split the cost, be prepared to make the property placement decision.

How long does a fence installation take?
Different properties have different requirements and could make the installation go faster or slower. In general terms, for average properties, plan on a week for the project to be complete. Your installation team will give you a better idea of a timeframe during the quote process.

Do I need a permit for a fence installation?
Fence installation is a home improvement project that will likely require a permit from your city or town. We strongly recommend following the rules and guidelines set by your city or county when having a fence installed on your property. Talk with your contractor and see who is responsible for getting the permit. Many times the contractor will handle it as part of the project.

Working with an HOA
In addition to getting a permit from your town, if you live in a community governed by a homeowners association, you will probably need to work with your HOA’s Architectural Committee and get permission before installing the fence. They will likely need to know what type of fence, the color and an installation diagram for their approval.

Do I need to be worried about underground utilities?
The short answer is yes. Verify with your installation contractor that they will call to have will call to have someone mark cable, telephone, electrical, and gas lines. During the installation, monitor all of your utilities just in case a line is inadvertently cut.

Should the installation company be insured?
Absolutely. Always verify with your installation contractor that the company is licensed and insured to work in your area. Never work with a contractor who isn’t.

Will the fence come with a warranty?
Almost all of the time a fence will come with a warranty that protects against damage. We recommend getting a written warranty from your installation team

What about my property lines?
Your installation team is going to need to know where your property lines are. If you have a property plan, they should be marked on the plan. If you do not have a plan, you can get one from your town assessor’s office.

What kind of care and maintenance does vinyl require?
Vinyl fencing requires very little maintenance, it should never need to be painted or stained. Simply washing the fence with mild detergent and rinsing with water will keep the fence looking fresh and new.

What are some things I should check out when considering a fence installation contractor?
Here are the top things we recommend:
a. Does the contractor have an official place of business? They should.
b. Does the contractor use their own employees to do the installation? They should.
c. Will the contractor provide a written estimate and/or contract? They should.
d. Is the contractor bonded and insured? We covered this before, and yes, they should.
e. Will the contractor provide you with references? They should!
f. Always be careful of prices that seem unbelievably low, always watch out for suspicious business practices.
g. For more information, and lists of fence professionals in your area, visit the American Fence Association at http://www.americanfenceassociation.com

We’ve tried to cover the most common questions and concerns when it comes to residential fence installation, overall keep lines of communication open with your contractor and make sure you feel comfortable with all aspects of the project, from the quote to the final installation.

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