Installing or repairing residential fencing is often a large project many homeowners undertake when they try to make their home look unique. It is just one way a homeowner can showcase their home using their own creativity and means of expression. For the most part, do it yourselfers have few problems when it comes to installing a residential fence.
Those who do not want to attempt the feat on their own can hire professionals to install the fence. Others who choose to do it on their own will need to make sure that they avoid six of the most common mistakes homeowners often fall prey to.
Always Know Your Property
Many homeowners do not know their property like they should. When a property line is drawn up, stakes are normally placed to mark exactly where the boundaries are. Over the years, the stakes can be moved and the property lines may become vague or distorted. Before installing any type of fence, it is extremely important to have the land surveyed to determine exactly where the property lines are.
This will ensure the fence is placed where it should be. If a fence is installed without knowing where the property lines are, it may have to be removed and placed on the proper boundary. This will result in extra expense, and in some cases, a lengthy court battle if the neighbor chooses to pursue legal action.
Understand Community Zoning Laws
Homeowners Associations and zoning laws determine what type of fencing is allowed in different areas. Some have height restrictions, while others designate a specific type of material that must be used to make sure the fence is in compliance with the organization’s requirements.
Before installing any residential fencing, check with your local government or HOA to find out what types of fencing are allowed in your area. This will prevent you from wasting both time and money on building a fence that will later need to be brought into compliance with local regulations.
One of the biggest problems homeowners face is poor planning. This means not taking into consideration the amount of materials that will be needed to complete the project. It can also mean choosing the wrong materials or not accounting for the varying degrees of slope within the contours of the lawn.
Poor planning often means cutting corners when it comes to choosing quality materials or not budgeting enough money to complete the project in a timely manner.
Don’t Dig Blind
Don’t dig blind means never begin to dig a hole for a fence post before checking to find out where the utility lines are buried. Natural gas lines, fiber-optic lines, telephone lines and other types of utility lines run underground.
Each utility company is required to bury their conduit and line so many inches below the ground’s surface. Each utility line is different with some lines being buried deeper than others. Always call before you dig and reduce the risk of accidental injury.
Measurements Must Be Accurate
To prevent costly mistakes when it comes to the amount of materials needed for residential fencing, always make sure that your measurements are accurate. Before purchasing any material, exact measurements should be taken so that the right amount of each piece can be purchased.
Poor measurements can lead to a discrepancy in the amount of materials purchased. Too many materials can leave you with an excess that you have no use for, while not having enough materials can also cause you to exceed your budget.
Set Posts Properly
For the fence to be secure, the posts must be accurately set. If they are not, the fence will eventually lean or start to bow. One of the biggest mistakes in installing residential fencing is not digging the posts deep enough. Corner post holes must be deep enough so that the posts themselves do not lean in any direction once the cement has been poured and the posts are stabilized.
Properly set posts are a must if the fence is expected to remain sturdy and upright over the next several years.