8 Common Fence Installation Mistakes to Avoid for Homeowners

by March 4th, 2021

Installing a fence on your property comes with a lot of benefits. Fences provide privacy and security for your family. You can rest easy about your children playing outside in a fenced-in backyard.

Fences are also great additions for homeowners who have pets. You can allow your animals to roam free in the yard without being tethered. You won't have to worry about them wandering into traffic or bothering your neighbors. 

However, before installing a fence on your property, there are few things you need to know. Primarily, you need to know about common fence installation mistakes so you can learn how to avoid them. 

We're here to help make sure your project goes as smoothly as possible. Keep reading for a quick list of mistakes you should avoid when putting up a new fence.

1. Not Knowing Your Property Lines 

First, you need to be sure of your property lines. Building your fence on your neighbor's property could lead to big problems down the road. They could file a lawsuit, force you to undo all of your hard work, and more. 

Alternatively, if your land backs up to city or county land, you could be fined. Get information and plat maps on your exact property lines by contacting your county recorder's office. You also should have been given a survey of your property when you purchased your home. You might also be able to find the information you need online. 

Once you know where your property line lies, we recommend erring on the side of caution. Bring your fence perimeter in 4-6 inches from the property line to avoid accidental outliers. 

2. Not Consulting Your Budget

Next, you need to assess your budget before you get started on your project. It would be a shame to start a fence and be forced to leave it unfinished due to a lack of funds. Sadly, this is one of the more common fence installation mistakes. 

Talk to your local fencing providers and installers to get a estimate of how much your project will cost. If you're limited on funds, you may consider financing the fence with interest free financing

Fortunately, many fencing companies offer in-house financing options to help homeowners afford fence installation costs. Get pre-approved with their finance center to find out what you qualify for.

3. Measuring Incorrectly

Have you ever heard the expression "measure twice, cut once?" This is a lesson learned in the school of hard knocks. Time and time again, homeowners and contractors alike waste products and materials because they measured part of a project incorrectly. 

Don't make this mistake. If you're installing the fence yourself, you need to take your time and measure everything carefully multiple times.

A single off-set post can affect your entire fence line. Additionally, you don't want to buy too little or too much material. 

4. Not Choosing the Right Material 

There are several different types of fences. One of the most common fence installation mistakes is choosing the wrong material for your needs. For example, aluminum and vinyl fencing are the most common fence materials in Lee County, but they may not be right for the aesthetic of your home.

However, different fence designs aren't the only things you need to consider. You must also think about the pros and cons of each type of fencing. 

For example, wood fencing is beautiful and provides adequate privacy and security. However, it's also the hardest fencing material to maintain. 

Alternatively, chain link fencing is sturdy, secure, and long-lasting. Chain link fences require very little maintenance. However, they don't provide any privacy.

Think about what you want in terms of privacy, security, durability, pet containment, and aesthetics. 

5. Not Knowing Where Your Utilities Are Buried

Next, anytime you're digging holes or breaking ground on your property, you must identify where your utility lines are buried. These include water pipes, sewage pipes, electrical wires, cable lines, and more. 

Damaging any of these lines could have major consequences. It could set you back on your project and cost you hundreds of dollars in repairs. Contact your utility service providers and have a technician come out to mark where the lines are buried before you get started. If you are having your fence professionally installed you should verify that the fence company calls 811 before installing the fence.

6. Neglecting Coding Laws and HOA Rules

Not all fence installation mistakes have to do with errors or accidents. Sometimes, homeowners fail to get the approval needed to build a fence on their property. For example, if you live under a homeowners association, there may be a whole host of rules governing your fence installation. 

Alternatively, you could violate city or county coding laws. This could include blocking street visibility, coming too close to sidewalks, building your fence too tall, etc. More than likely, you'll face fines and be forced to tear the fence down at your own cost. Make sure to obtain the proper HOA approval, and to apply for the necessary permits. If you hire a professional installation fence company, make sure they obtain the proper permits for you and your project.

7. Not Doing the Job Properly

Typical DIY fence installation mistakes also include poor workmanship issues. If you're going to install the fence yourself, you need to make sure you know how to do the job properly. Research fence installation methods, such as:

  • Anchoring posts
  • Using the right materials
  • Measuring correctly
  • Using the proper angles at corners
  • And more

Additionally, it might be beneficial to rope some of your friends and family into helping you. Fence installation projects are much easier if you have more than one set of hands. 

8. Getting in Over Your Head with DIY Work

Finally, consider hiring a fence installation company. Though it's quite possible to learn how to do the job yourself, hiring fencing contractors will save you time and frustration. 

It can even help you save money in the long-run. Yes, you'll be paying for their services, but it can help you avoid fines, damages, redoing the fence, and other issues.

Hiring a fence installation company means getting the job done right the first time. It will also provide you with peace of mind. You'll know the project will be completed efficiently and professionally. 

Looking for More Fence Installation Mistakes and Advice?


If you're planning on installing a fence on your property, make sure you avoid the fence installation mistakes listed above. Check out some of the other articles on our blog for more fencing advice and information. 

And if you're ready to get started on your project, contact us today to get a free quote on materials and/or installation. We will help you pick out the right materials and professionally install the fence for you.

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