New Fence Costs
Looking at the cost of wooden fences, remember that a lot of this information can help with other kinds of fences too. You can break down the cost of a fence into parts like how tall it is and how long, the style of the fence, what kind of materials are used for the fence boards and rails, the posts, any trim at the top and bottom, and what kind of stain you use. The price you might pay for a fence can really vary, with each company figuring out prices in their own way.
The best way to figure out what a fence might cost you is to find some trustworthy fencing contractors and ask them to give you a quote. Once you've found a good company, you can relax knowing you'll get a well-made fence that should last a long time. If you're just looking for the cheapest price, be careful because sometimes you get what you pay for. It might not always be true, but we think it's not worth risking a poorly built fence.
When we're talking about the height and length of a fence, it's pretty straightforward. An eight-foot fence will generally cost around 30% more than a six-foot one because it needs more materials: longer fence boards, more posts, more concrete, more stain. When you think about length, we measure that in linear feet. The first thing to think about to save some money is whether you can reuse most or all of the fence posts. You might save a few dollars for every linear foot of fence if you can.
How much a fence style costs usually depends on how many fence boards are used and how much work it takes to build. Popular styles for wooden fences include board-on-board, side-by-side, shadow box, and horizontal. We don't see a lot of horizontal fences in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, so you might want to check with your Homeowner's Association if you're thinking about one. A board-on-board privacy fence needs more fence boards than other styles. Building a shadow box fence takes a little longer than a side-by-side fence. Adding a trim at the top can cost between $5 to $10 for each linear foot of fence, and a kickboard or rot board at the bottom is one of the cheapest upgrades you can get. A kickboard not only looks good, but it also lifts the fence boards off the ground to help keep them from rotting, and gives you something to run the weed whacker against instead of the fence boards.
Around North Texas or Dallas/Fort Worth, most people build fences using steel posts and cedar fence boards. You could save a little money by using treated pine for the rails. Treated pine fence boards are used in some parts of the country, but in Texas our summers get really hot, and you might not be happy with how a fence with treated pine boards looks after its first summer. You could choose to use treated pine for the rails because they don't move around as much as the fence boards since they're thicker and attached at multiple points to the fence boards and posts. If you're worried about treated pine boards but still want to save some money, you could use KDAT or Kiln Dried After Treatment rails, which are made of pine but have been dried in a kiln after they've been pressure treated. They cost more than standard treated pine 2x4s but less than cedar 2x4s. If you want a fence where all the wood matches, you should go with a fence made entirely of cedar.
Just like with pine fence boards, most people in the Dallas/Fort Worth area don't use treated pine for fence posts because they don't last as long as steel fence posts. Considering how much the price of materials has gone up since COVID, it doesn't seem worth it to risk the chance of having to rebuild a fence multiple times during the period you own your home. Steel fence posts are basically a given in our area. An eight-foot fence will cost a bit more for posts because eight-foot fences have posts every six feet apart versus a six-foot fence which has posts every eight feet apart. Eight-foot fences also need longer poles because the posts are generally dug three feet deep, needing more concrete as a result. If you want a stronger fence, it's perfectly fine to use a six-foot span for a six-foot fence and bury the posts three feet or more. Additionally, steel posts come in different thicknesses, including 16 gauge, 13 gauge, 10 gauge, and schedule 40. One of the strongest and most expensive posts you can use is a Postmaster post. These are also the easiest to hide because they're designed to be covered with a single fence board.
A nice-looking top trim can add a lot to the cost of a fence. Using a 2x6 or a 2x8 cedar board as a "top cap," whether you stain it or not, can be costly. You can add, say, a 1x4 face trim or even a triple trim by adding a 1x2 on top of the 1x4. As mentioned earlier, this can add another $10 for each linear foot of fence. You can also add decorative corbels and a fancy gate to the equation. Most fences are custom made and hand crafted, but when you start adding expensive wood and craftsmanship above and beyond what's standard, it can really add up. You can often get a gate with a steel frame for less than a few hundred extra dollars, as long as the Lewisville, TX fence company you choose is capable of doing it. If you don't want a decorative top trim, corbels, and other fancy add-ons, you can save some money by either using a single 1x4 face trim for a flat top fence or just going with the traditional dog ear fence board.
You can generally get your fence stained for less money if you buy wood that's already been stained. This is because pre-stained wood is completely dipped in the stain, covering the whole board. You can get custom staining done after the fence is built, but the stain might not cover the boards as well as pre-staining does. Either way you choose to stain your fence is a good choice. Staining your fence will make it last longer, but you'll need to reapply the stain in a few years. The cheapest way to stain a fence is to do it yourself if you can, but it's not as easy as it sounds. Staining a fence can be a messy job and the stain tends to get in the air. There are different types of stains and ways to apply them. You might have neighbors to consider when it comes to the color and style of your fence. If you have multiple neighbors, it's best to try to work with them when you decide on staining your fence.
The best way to save money on a fence is to try to share the cost with your neighbors. This can be difficult, but with some planning and communication, it can be done.