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Fences have a wide variety of purposes. Whether you’re looking to keep your pets, add privacy or fiercely deter intruders, fences are an invaluable property asset. They also add visual appeal to your exterior, contrasting or matching your home’s architecture.
Construction materials and home styles have come a long way. So much so that your fencing options are seemingly endless, which result in wrong choices. The best type of fence for your home depends on many factors such as its purpose, style, the climate you live in, maintenance and more!
In this guide, we’ll go through the following:
- The best type of fences along with their pros and cons
- Factors to consider when choosing a fence
So without further ado, let’s get started on finding the best types of fencing for your home!
16 Fence Types for Your Home
Colorbond fences offer a clean, sleek look that is perfect for modern homes. Made from galvanised steel with a powder coated finish, Colorbond fences are incredibly durable and won’t warp, peel or crack in the sun. They’re also termite and rot-resistant, making them a great choice for homes that experience extreme weather conditions.
In addition to their overall strength, Colorbond fences are low maintenance and come in various colours. If you’re looking for a no-fuss fence that will last for years to come, Colorbond is a great option.
- Provide a sleek and symmetrical design
- A top choice in Australia
- Low maintenance
- Can be recycled, making them environmentally friendly
The only downside to Colorbond fences is their relatively high price. The material is generally more expensive than a timber fence or PVC fencing, but will last much longer. Overall, colorbond fencing is a worthwhile investment for your home.
White Picket Fence
There’s nothing cosier and more nostalgic than a picket fence. Picket fences were once seen as the quintessential American fence for their trademark look. Although they’ve been primarily made out of wood and painted white, picket fences can now be made from various materials such as PVC, Vinyl and metal.
Picket fences with their unique, evenly spaced slats and shaped tops provide a classic, elegant look that is extremely inviting. They’re also available in a range of heights, so you can choose one that best suits your front yard and house.
- Come in various colours and heights
- A classical design for residential homes
- Budget-friendly, depending on which material you choose
- Provide privacy without being too overbearing
- A high-maintenance option, especially if made out of wood
- Susceptible to mould, rotting and insect damage
- It tends to lean over time
- It can be broken in a storm or by strong winds
Wrought Iron Fence
If rustic, antiqued charm is what you’re looking for, wrought iron fencing is a great option. Wrought iron fence designs are highly versatile, coming in various shapes and featuring intricate patterns you can customise. If security is your primary concern, a wrought iron fence with spiked rail heads is ideal, as it will be difficult to climb over and provides a great visual deterrent.
In addition to its stylish design, wrought iron fences are also highly durable. They can last for decades with the proper care and treatment. However, they will require regular maintenance to ensure they don’t rust or chip.
- Available in various designs and patterns
- It can be customised to your liking
- Resembles classic, old-world charm
- Extremely durable
- Expensive upfront cost due to the customisation involved to build one
- May rust over time if not properly cared for
- Heavier than other types of fences
In Australia, it’s a legal requirement to install a pool fence if your pool’s depth is 300mm or more. This prevents young children or pets from accessing the pool area and drowning, as pools can pose a severe safety hazard.
The law aside, pool fences are also a great way to add privacy and style to your pool area. There are many pool fences to choose from, including glass, aluminium and steel – glass pool fences are categorised as frameless and semi-frameless.
Frameless glass pool fences provide an unobstructed view of your pool, making it ideal for parents to supervise their children. They have spigot floor supports which keep the glass panels in place and are weather-resistant. Semi-frameless glass pool fences, meanwhile, have metal posts holding the glass panels. Like frameless glass fences, it provides uninterrupted views and won’t rot or chip. For quality pool fence installation, contact us now.
- Keep children and pets safe
- Come in various materials, designs and heights
- Easy to maintain as glass will not rot or chip
- Requires regular cleaning to prevent build-up
- It’s typically an expensive option
- Prone to scratches and damage
- If the glass is broken, it will need to be replaced immediately
A retaining wall’s primary purpose is to support soil on one side of a wall while allowing space for water drainage on the other side. They are often used in sloped gardens to create level areas for planting or seating.
However, a concrete post and panel retaining wall is a great option if you’re looking for a cost-effective solution to brick or limestone walls.
Concrete posts are placed at regular intervals and connected with steel or timber panels, making them easier to install. Overall, they’re a stylish and robust choice that can blend in with your landscaping.
- Can be used for various purposes, such as level seating areas or gardens
- Easy to install
- Affordable compared to a brick or limestone wall
- Concrete retaining walls are solid
- A low-maintenance option that only requires an annual cleaning
- Not ideal for DIY installation as pouring and casting concrete should be left to the professionals
- Can only be constructed to a height of 4 feet
- Requires adequate support and drainage
Vinyl fencing provides a fantastic, low-maintenance alternative to wooden fences. This plastic-based material, unlike wood, won’t rot or splinter and is impervious to insect damage. It also comes in many colours and styles, from tall privacy fences that provide complete seclusion to picket fences that add charm.
Overall, Vinyl is a cost-effective option compared to wood, and with the right care, can last for years. It also doesn’t require repainting or staining every few years, giving homeowners significant long-term savings.
- Available in various styles and designs
- Low maintenance as it only needs washing occasionally
- Manufacturers often offer long-term warranties
- Unaffected by moisture and insect damage
- Vinyl fences can crack in extreme weather, and with age
- Only comes in white and beige shades
- Has a plastic-like appearance which some people dislike
Brick wall fence
A brick wall that’s been expertly built adds a touch of sophistication to your home. Whether it’s for privacy, security, or adding some extra curb appeal, you can’t go wrong with brick walls. They’re also firm and durable, making them ideal for high-traffic areas or properties in windy locations.
Besides privacy and its classical look, brick fencing acts as a noise barrier and can significantly reduce noise pollution from busy roads or construction sites. This can be highly beneficial if you’re located in a busy city like Sydney or Melbourne.
- Buffs up privacy and security
- Strong and durable
- Aesthetically pleasing, which potential buyers will love
- Installation is expensive and time-consuming as each brick must be laid individually
- Must be approved by your local council
- Rendered brick walls are reasonably expensive
- Not a DIY job and will require multiple bricklayers
Chain link Fences
A wire or chain link fence is often used in commercial properties, schools, government buildings or public parks. However, this type of fence is versatile and can be installed for residential properties, including your backyard or garden.
Chain Link fences are also heavily used in rural areas as they provide a cost-effective way to secure livestock. The mesh-like design is difficult for animals to push through or damage, making it ideal for farmers who want a reliable and affordable option. They mainly excel in their function, rather than design and aren’t the most visually appealing type of fence.
- Can be used for a variety of purposes, such as security or containing animals
- Is a durable and long-lasting option
- Installation and fabric replacement and repair is relatively simple
- A cheaper material which is ideal for covering large spaces
- Can be used as a temporary or permanent fencing solution – ideal for events and construction sites
- The metal design can be pretty cold and sterile looking
- Not ideal for security as most chain link fences are 4-5 feet tall
- Not private, as people can see through the gaps in the fence
- It can rust over time, but picking galvanised steel will help to prevent this
Barbed wire fence
Like chainlink, barbed wire fences are often used in rural areas for agricultural purposes. They provide a cheap and effective way to contain livestock and deter predators or pests. Barbed wire fences can also be used for security purposes, although they’re not as common as they once were.
While barbed wire fencing isn’t going to win any awards for its looks, it’s a practical solution that gets the job done. A barbed wire fence is worth considering if you’re looking for a cheap and cheerful fence that definitely deter intruders.
- Inexpensive and easy to install
- Effective in containing livestock
- It can be used for security purposes
- It can be used for temporary fencing
- It’s an eyesore and won’t do much for your curb appeal
- Can be dangerous, particularly if you have small children or pets
- Can rust over time
- May not be allowed in your neighbourhood or by your local council
Manual or Automatic Gates
If fences aren’t enough to keep your property secure, you may want to consider gates installation instead. These are typically placed at your driveway’s entrance (slide driveway gates) or single pedestrian gates and can be opened manually with a handle or key. Various designs and materials, such as wood, wrought iron or aluminium are available for your gate choice.
For extra security, you can also opt for an automatic gate which will open itself with the push of a button. Many come with an intercom system, so you can safely let visitors in without leaving your home. This is ideal for families with young children as it significantly reduces the chances of intruders or strangers gaining access to your property.
- Gates offer an extra layer of security for your home
- Come in manual or automatic options
- Can be made from different materials to complement your home’s aesthetic
- Gates, especially automatic options, can be expensive to install and maintain
- Not a DIY installation, as it’s various electrical components can be dangerous
- Require regular maintenance to ensure they’re functioning properly
Slat fences come in various materials and designs. These are often made from aluminium, steel, wood or PVC and have evenly spaced slats running along the fence. Slat fences are a popular choice as they’re aesthetically pleasing and can be easily customised to suit the style of your home.
They’re also available in a range of heights, depending on your personal preference or the size of your property. You can also purchase slat fences with inbuilt lighting, adding a touch of luxury to your home. This feature is ideal for those who have evening gatherings or parties as it will help to create a warm and inviting atmosphere.
- A stylish addition to any home
- Can be easily customised
- Neat looking
- It can be costly to purchase and install
- Minimal security as intruders can climb over them, using the slats as footholds
- Less privacy as people can see through the gaps in between the slats
Australia is the land of the bush and one popular fencing material is brushwood. This type of fence uses hardwood broomsticks or similar materials, which are then woven together to create a barrier. The result is an eco-friendly, unique fence that adds character and nature to your property.
Many Australians opt for brushwood fences as they’re an inexpensive way to create privacy and security. They’re also virtually maintenance-free, requiring the occasional roll cap repair to restore its strength.
- Unique and stylish
- Low maintenance
- Eco-friendly as it uses natural materials
- Offers a natural appearance that Australian homes are known for
- Not as strong as other fence materials such as steel
- Prone to rot and insect damage
- Attracts termites
- Brushwood fences are not as common, which may affect resale value
- Not advisable in bushfire zones as they can quickly spread flames
Bamboo fencing is popular in Australia as it’s an attractive and sustainable option. The material is lightweight yet strong, making it easy to install and requiring minimal maintenance. If you’re looking to add privacy, we recommend using bamboo sheets that cannot be seen through.
The type of fencing is also a sustainable resource as it proliferates, meaning it can be harvested without harming the environment. And as it’s a natural material, it perfectly complements a wide array of landscaping and gardens.
- A beautiful and natural addition to any home
- Strong and durable
- Sustainable and eco-friendly
- Can be stained in a colour of your choice
- Costs more than Vinyl or metal fence types
- The material may not be available in your local area
- Can crack and split after long periods of exposure to the elements
Metal is a quintessential fencing material that’s been used for centuries. It’s robust, durable and offers a high level of security, making it ideal for residential properties in high-crime areas. The most common metal fences are made from aluminium, wrought iron and chainlink.
Aluminium fencing doesn’t rust and is easy to maintain, however, can be more expensive than other materials. It’s also available in a wide range of colours and is relatively lightweight, making installation a breeze. Its most significant advantages are its durability and low maintenance requirements, as it’s highly resistant to corrosion, rust and fire.
- Metal fences are strong and offer a high level of security
- They’re durable and require minimal maintenance
- Metal designs can range from intricate and ornate to sleek and modern
- They offer a wide range of colours and finishes
- They can be expensive to purchase and install
- Can be heavy, depending on the material used
- Not as eco-friendly as other types of fences
A wooden fence is tried and tested, offering a classic look that will never go out of style. It’s also highly versatile in design and material choice and thus able to complement any house exterior and landscaping. The most popular types of wooden fencing include:
- Timber fencing
- Post and Rail Fencing
- Louvre Fencing
- Vertical Board Fencing and more
Wood fences are generally relatively easy to install, depending on your chosen style and design. As wood can be carved and shaped into almost any form, it gives you the freedom to create a unique look for your home.
- Offers a classic and timeless look
- Can be easily customised to suit your taste and needs
- Installation is relatively straightforward
- Material is widely available and relatively inexpensive
- Has a limited lifespan – generally between 5-10 years
- Prone to fungus and dry root
- Requires repainting and regular maintenance
- Drywood can contract, sag and warp
Composite fences are composed of plastic and wood fibres, making them a popular eco-friendly option. These fence types are low maintenance and only require occasional cleaning with soap, hot water and a soft-bristled brush. They also won’t crack or splinter, saving you time filling in gaps and repairing the damage.
A Composite fence is also available in a wide range of colours and styles and, just as importantly, is built at taller heights. This blocks prying eyes and adds a certain grandness to your property.
- Come in various textures and colours
- Resistant to rotting, splinters and cracks
- Has a wood-like appearance, but can be made to look like stone
- Colour made fade overtime
- Prone to mould growth
- Can stain
- Difficult and expensive to purchase and install
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Fence Type
From tall and impenetrable, to short and sweet there’s a fence type for everyone. But before you purchase and install a fence, you need to know your needs and wants. This includes your fence’s primary purpose, privacy needs and budget.
Let’s briefly go through each one:
Purpose – do you need a fence for security, privacy or aesthetic purposes? Maybe it’s a combination of all three. Suppose your fence’s purpose is particular i.e. you need a pool fence to comply with local regulations, then this may limit your choices.
Privacy – how much privacy do you need from your fence? If you live in a rural area with a smaller population, you may not require as much privacy as someone who lives in an urban area. A privacy fence should be taller than your average fence and not contain see-through spaces.
Budget – how much are you willing or able to spend on a fence? If you have budget constraints, choosing cost-effective materials like PVC or brushwood may be your best option.
Aesthetics – A picket fence adds a touch of elegance, while a chain link fence is more industrial. Your exterior space will heavily determine the visual appeal and what look you’re going for.
Security – this helps deter burglars, animals and vandals. Choosing a fence with little gaps or holes is crucial if you live in a high-crime area. This way, potential invaders will have a more difficult time getting through.
Maintenance – If you don’t have the time, energy or know-how to regularly maintain your fence then choosing a low-maintenance option is ideal. This way you can save time and money in the long run.
Material availability – Homeowners can save money by purchasing fencing materials that are readily available in their area. This cuts down on shipping costs and waiting time for materials to arrive.
Complementing Your Fence with a Perfectly Edged and Mowed Lawn
While fences play a pivotal role in defining the boundaries and enhancing the security of your property, the overall aesthetic of your outdoor space is a combination of various elements. One such crucial element is the lawn. Just as a well-chosen fence can elevate the look of your home, a perfectly edged and meticulously mowed lawn can significantly boost its curb appeal.
A manicured lawn with clean edges and evenly cut grass not only complements your chosen fence but also creates a harmonious and well-maintained look for your entire property. Lawn edging and mowing can be as simple or intricate as you desire, and there are various tools, techniques, and services to achieve the desired result. Whether you’re looking to create a sharp divide between your garden beds and grass or want a seamless transition between your walkways and turf, the combination of lawn edging and regular lawn mowing is the answer.
For those interested in achieving that perfectly manicured lawn to match their new fence, check out our Garden Edging. Learn how to create flawless borders and elevate the overall look of your outdoor space.
Get Your Fences Installed by the Professionals at Sidepost Fencing
No matter what fence type you choose, the fencing experts at Sidepost have your back. Our fencing contractors can install chain link, picket, brushwood, and composite fences – to name a few.
We also operate all across Australia, providing fence installation services in all major cities and suburbs. Some of these include Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Perth, Brisbane, Hobart, Gold Coast, Newcastle and Canberra! So what are you waiting for? Get in touch with us today and get your fence installed to the highest standard!