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PRO FENCE DESIGN

5 Reasons Why You Should "Design" Your Fence 

Since most "off the shelf" sections don't meet a home's needs, only a fence design firm matches your fence and railing to the look, style, and unique needs for each home.

A Desiger Working on a Fence Design

SUBMITTED:       Pro Fence Design

POSTED:                October 2021

1. Designers See What Others Do Not

There are literally 100’s of fence types, models, and configurations. When combined with fence and railing's four core materials, the options are endless. While a traditional fence contractor may have access to their preferred models and materials, an outdoor designer casts a wider net across all suppliers. This allows designers more choices for their clientele and the ability to combine supply from several suppliers into one project.

 

A designer sees your home as a canvas around which a fence frames your property for aesthetic and/or security purposes. When a designer approaches your home, they are looking at;

  1. Your type of home - Colonial, Contemporary, Craftsman, Greek Revival, Farmhouse, French Country, Mediterranean, Mid-Century Modern, Ranch, Split Level, Tudor, Victorian, or Condominium

  2. Your neighborhood and the current types of fence or railing common to the area

  3. Your street location and backdrop as wooded or close to other homes 

  4. Your specific applications of fence or railing and the purpose of the fence or railing design
     

Designers tune a combination of fence and railing materials and models consistent with what data they collect from the list above, plus other considerations only a designer’s eye can see.
 

The result is an outdoor structure matched to your home, its surroundings and for the specific purposes you require.  

Consider the home type in your Fence Design
Consider the Neighborhood Look in your Fence Design
Conisder the location of the home in your fence desgin
Consider combinig materials in your fence design
2. Designers Consider All Material Options

A journey into a fence project begins with a review of the materials and models.  In the hands of a good designer, what starts as "I need a fence"  should quickly develop into "Now, I really want a fence" once all the material options and configurations are detailed.  

The four (4) core material choices are;

  1. Vinyl is popular choice in the northeast due to its resistance to climate

  2. Wood has a number of species and the most flexible for design cuts and customizations 

  3. Metal includes aluminum and steel chain link and have particular use cases and design considerations

  4. Custom is a category of design for material combinations, color options, exotic woods, and unique configurations
     

Designers will sketch, mock-up and create renditions of your fence as envisioned on your property. Clients should expect this level of professionalism considering the ticket price of fence in general. 
 

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3. Designers Account for Land Grade

This conversation should be a part of any interaction where there is land grade on site.  Below is a description of each installation method and corresponding images in order. 

  1. Following the grade is best when there is a steady grade up or down. So as long as the grade is constant, the space at the bottom of the fence will remain at 2”.  When there are slight changes in the grade, it is still best to keep bottom rail of the fence in a straight line which keeps the all-important top line straight as well.

  2. Maintaining a level top w/bottom grade fill helps keep a dead-level-straight top line by "bottom filling" the sections with custom sized fence pieces to close off gap caused by negative grade. This is more easily done with wood but it is also possible with vinyl. For minor bottom grade lines, some top soil fill can also do the trick. 

  3. Stepped designs allow the fence to climb up a grade while keeping each fence panel’s top line dead-level. For slight grades, the steps will be as short at 6” but steeper grades may require steps of up to 2’. Since one side of the fence’s bottom rail needs to be close to the ground, the other side will be raised that can be filled with additional fence or landscaping. 

  4. Stepped design w/bottom fill address a common concern to a home owner. While some gaps can be closed with landscaping, some are too high and need to be “filled” with additional fence material.

 

4. Designers Maintain Design Parity

This may be an abstract concept, but design parity matters. This design acumen accounts for matching materials and configurations on the site with others. For instance;

  1. Matching materials is advised to remain consistent in fence design. When there is a wood picket front, best to add a wood privacy back.  Same is true for vinyl - it is good to keep your front and back fence in the family.

  2. Matching designs is best and very noticeable.  If a house has a Victorian picket front, consider a Victorian picket toper for the back yard privacy fence. If a house has square lattice around its porch, make sure to get your fence lattice topper in square shapes too. 

  3. Matching colors is also achievable if your designer goes the extra step. Color matches should be made between house colors, decks, pavers and the fence. 

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5. Designers Deliver Options and Professional Content 

A fence is an investment in your home and it is not uncommon prices can run in the 10's of thousands of dollars. For that investment level, clients should expect a lot more than a simple email with an estimate or a cookie cutter quote. Renditions are the expected deliverable from any true design firm and some firms go the extra mile with carefully created content that demonstrates they fully understand the scope of work.  Below are some of the high-level deliverables and service you should expect.

  1. Engaging content on line and in print is a tell tale sign you are speaking to the right people. If a design firm is not taking care of this aspect of their business they are sure to be just as unprofessional on the product they install.

  2. Face to face collaboration is needed for each project as without a client's input a project will not deliver on its expectations.

  3. Proposals versus estimates is another signature of a design firm as the creation of a well though out plan, measurements, options, renditions and site photos are the foundation of a home improvement project that will exceed your expectations.

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Speaking with an experienced fence designer or installer can answer a number of questions ahead of any fence or railing project. Get input on material choices, fence types, models, regulations and project timelines from one of our pros.

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When you are ready to take the next step, we will be with you. Call or click to schedule a free, onsite proposal and estimate process with one of our design engineers.

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