With the U.S department of justice reporting number of burglaries in the millions over the past few years and counting, as a homeowner you are left with little choice but to think about how to burglar-proof your home with a security fence.
While most homeowners scratch their heads over what means they can use to protect and secure their homes, not many give much thought to putting up a fence.
But one thing you should know is that fences can be just as effective as any other home security option, if not more.
So if you haven’t installed one, then it’s about time you think about it. And that’s probably why you are here, right?
Well, thankfully enough, you’ve come to the right page, as I will be taking you through just about everything there is to know before picking up your hammer and nailing those boards in place.
How can I secure my home from burglars with a fence?
But even when you have all these in place, you can’t sit back and say you have everything concerning your home security catered to. Adding a fence could make a world of difference, and this could be your very first line of defense against burglars and thieves.
However, one thing you have to keep in mind is that you can’t just grab your tools, walk out and start erecting a fence around your property. You need to think about several things.
So before getting into the bits about the different types of fences and what to choose, let’s set clear a few things that you need to know beforehand.
So, does a fence deter burglars?
Well, let’s start from the one thing that matters the most, the question of whether a fence would really do the job of keeping burglars away, which could also mean whether it’s worth the cost and the hustle.
Now, here’s the thing;
A fence needs to be just right to stop burglars on their trucks; otherwise, it will just draw them to your property. We’ll get into more details about that in a moment.
Do I need permission from my neighbor when putting up a fence?
When it comes to putting up a fence along the border, you don’t necessarily have to get your neighbor’s permission to build a fence, and this is a general rule in most states. However, if the land you intend to build on crosses over to your neighbor’s land, then you have to talk to them.
Also, make sure to keep your fence within the bounds of your property, unless you have agreed to jointly put up the fence and maintain it as neighbors. This is where the next question that bothers most people comes in.
So, who owns a fence on the property line? Well, as we’ve mentioned, you shouldn’t build your fence on the property line unless you are on a joint project with your adjacent neighbor to build and maintain it. And in that case, you will be co-owners.
Then there’s another question; does my neighbor have to pay for half the cost of the fence? And the answer is a resounding yes! If you agree to work together to put up the fence and co-own it, then you can cost-share the project.
And what happens if one of us damages our co-owned fence? In that case, the neighbor who makes the damage should shoulder the entire cost of repairing and restoring the fence. But again, it all comes down to your consensus or the terms of your agreement if you have one.
So, how high should my security fence be?
In most instances, a residential security fence doesn’t need to be too tall.
And in most jurisdictions, this can be restricted, with the backyard fences allowed to reach a maximum of only 6 feet and about 3 to 4 feet for the front fences.
So do some homework about the restrictions (if any) in your state so you can abide by them.
Also, make sure to talk to your homeowner’s insurance provider.
How much should a security fence cost?
There are many factors at play when it comes to considering how much the cost of your fence should be. These include the material you use, the area that you have to secure, as well as whether you are going the DIY way or you’ll be calling in someone to do the job.
To make it easier for you to assess just how much this might cost, here’s a breakdown of the cost of different fencing materials.
Barbed wire is by far one of the cheapest kinds of fences out there, costing only $1 to $6 for a linear foot installed.
Electric, also known as an invisible fence, costs a similar amount at $1 to $6 for each foot installed.
The metal chain link is a bit costly at between $5 and $40 for each linear foot.
Wood & privacy fence cost even more at $10 to $20 for every foot.
And then there are other expensive fences, which include Vinyl, aluminum, wrought iron and composite & Trex in that order.
Keep in mind that, this is just the cost of installation; the issue of maintenance also plays a significant role, as the costlier fences are also expensive to maintain.
What type of fence is most durable?
Some types of fences cost a lot more, and the high price tag comes from such factors as how strong and durable it really is, let’s take a sneak peek at three of the most durable materials out there.
Also known as PVC, vinyl fence comes across as one of the most expensive options out there, and for a good reason.
The thing is, this material can resist the elements, so it doesn’t rust, crack, or rot like most other materials do upon exposure to constant pounding by heat, cold and moisture.
Galvanized chain link is the other type of fence that you can really count on for a lasting solution, as it comes sealed with a special coating that makes it very durable. And when it comes to performance, it’s every bit as tough.
Then there’s wrought iron, which is incredibly strong and virtually impossible to break without heavy-duty tools. Besides, this one doesn’t crack or splinter even when it receives a good deal of beating from the elements or burglars, which makes it a great choice for a long-term fencing solution.
Does a fence add any value to my property?
With the cost of setting up a fence ranging in the thousands of dollars for a new one, you would think that it should make a significant difference in the value of your property, right?
Well, this will depend on several factors. For instance, the length of the fence and the material used might count in your favor, as well as other factors as your neighborhood, the condition of the fence itself as well as what prospective buyers want.
Besides, having a tall fence in the backyard could attract potential buyers who have pets, and if it’s decorative enough in the front yard, then it makes the home look great.
Do I need a permit for a fence?
In most cases, you don’t need a permit to put up a fence, but, there are some cases where it becomes necessary to get one.
First, if the fence exceeds 6 feet in height, or if you are building a masonry fence, then you will need a permit.
Another instance where you’ll need a permit is if your fence turns out to be in a public right of way, in which case an encroachment permit from your local department of public works will be necessary.
What characters should a good fence have?
Now that all is said and done, it’s about time you set out to start working on your fence.
But even before that, when planning for the type of fence that you want, keep in mind that any good fence should accomplish these three things.
It should be difficult to climb over, hard to bypass, and doesn’t create any hiding place.
To begin with, the difficulty to climb comes down to a few things, and one of them is the height of the fence itself.
A fence that is about 8 feet high is sure to make things as difficult as possible for a burglar to climb all the way up and even risky to jump off from the top.
You could also get one with spiked or pointed projections at the top, which means even if someone manages to climb to the top, it will still be virtually impossible to make their way to the other side, and into your property.
Keep any horizontal rails at a minimum. The problem with horizontal rails is that they could make climbing a fence way too easy for a thief no matter how tall the fence is.
So keep those at a minimum where possible.
Make it difficult to bypass by doing a few things like securing it to the ground using concrete along the entire length of the fence for maximum stability. But if that sounds too costly, then you can always ensure you secure the post solidly to the ground.
Also, you need to make sure that one can’t cut through your fence with ease. And on the same note, make sure the gate is also strong and have similarly strong gate security locks and a reliable gate opener as well. After all, having a strong fence but with a flimsy gate doesn’t make much of a difference, or does it?
When it comes to hiding places, it all boils down to the ability to see anyone who is near the gate. A gate that doesn’t allow passersby to see through, for instance, makes it impossible for potential intruders to peep into your property.
What are some of the best fencing types for your home?
Now that all those issues are over and done with, here are some of the best types of fences that you should consider installing in your property.
The list is a long one, but such options as the ones we’ve discussed above, as well as razor ripper coil, clear view fences, wooden fences as well as dense shrubbery (preferably thorny) fences, are also options you can go for.
Others include palisade fences, brick wall fence, and electric fence. It all comes down to deciding which one best fits your budget or does the job depending on the security level that you want for your property.
How to fortify your fence
Building a simple fence will get the job done, but it might not be enough to deter burglars from targeting your property. To make it even more burglar-proof, you can add a few things such as the following.
- Barbed wire & razor tape
- Broke the glass on top of brick wall fences
- An anti-climb paint or non-drying paint
- Spinning fence toppings
- Fence spikes
Commercial fence spikes
you might have seen this type of fence design in your neighborhood, as it is one of the most common types out there. It’s simple to set up and usually affordable.
The other great thing about these spikes is that they are super tough and difficult to remove, making them an additional barrier for burglars trying to climb over and past your fence.
If you have a brick-walled fence, then this one will make a good top for your fence. It’s rugged, ugly, and every bit as deadly if any criminal decides to take chances with it.
But what makes this option even more exciting is that broken glass is very cheap and easy to find, you could actually make it yourself from those old wine bottles, just be sure you are doing it in a safe way.
Also, make sure the glass is well secured into the motor, as it could hurt passersby or anyone within the compound if it breaks off the fence, so make sure you set your glass secure enough to avoid such accidents.
Besides, make sure to place a warning sign to warn people of the specific danger in the area close to the wall.
The only problem is that with such signs, the broken glass barrier won’t catch criminals by surprise as it should, but it’s better to be safe anyway since this could actually persuade them against trying their luck with your property.
Light timber trellis
Having some trellis in place, preferably with thorny climbers, acts as a deterrent as it’s easily likely to break if someone tried to climb it, making it risky.
The good thing about this option is that it’s easy when it comes to setting it up. But you need the materials to be precisely sized, with the trellis measuring at least 400 mm high, and the battens about 15 to 20 mm squared.
This is important since if these are too thick, the structure becomes strong enough for a burglar to climb over it, and if they are too thick, someone can easily cut through them.
Bringing on thorny plants makes the whole effort of breaching the fence even more difficult to compromise the fence. Just make sure the trellis is secured strongly enough to support the weight of the plant.
The problem with the plant is that it could make replacing or restoring the timber difficult if the existing one rots away over time. So your best bet is treating the wood to prevent damage by pests or rotting, and using stainless steel fixing to make it lasting.
Spinning fence toppings
With a rotating roller on the top of your fence, burglars will definitely have a hard time trying to get into your property or even have an easy escape if they managed to get in by other means.
The idea here is to make the top of your fence unstable, which makes this obstacle almost impossible to overcome, especially if the fence is tall enough.
These toppings come in different types, some are horizontal, others are vertical (which are ideal for short fences), but you’ll also find some with spikes, which are better for tall fences.
Usually used along with razor tape, this one could make your home look more like a prison, and it could actually be risky if you are in an area with many passersby.
As such, it’s best to go for planning permission especially for fences that are 7 feet or taller. Also, make sure to place warning signs so you can alert people against getting too close.
Also known as non-dry paint, this paint does not dry completely, which not only makes it slippery, but it also leaves a mark, like a shoe print as well as leaving some paint on the burglar.
Now, not many criminals would take their chances with such a fence, which is a good thing. On the downside, however, the paint could catch lots of dust and leaves, making it look less impressive.
Here’s A Tip!
If you want to build a fence around your property without breaking the bank, then a wooden one could be an easy and less costly DIY option.
As it turns out, fencing your property could make the difference between burglars targeting your home and moving on to the next block. And as you’ve seen, there are a whole lot of options at your disposal when it comes to types of fences.
So you can go for the one that best fits in with your property or the one that matches your budget. It’s all a matter of choice. However, make sure to consider the safety of the people within the compound as well as passersby.
As much as you need to keep burglars out, you definitely don’t want some innocent passerby to get hurt. It’s time to secure your home, and any of the fences we’ve discussed will get the job done, just go for it.