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5 ways to build a fence (and keep the peace)

As the old saying goes, good fences make good neighbors. Practice good fence-building etiquette by talking to your neighbors before erecting what could become a controversial fence.

Before you rush out to build that fence around your property or replace the one already there, you might want to slow down and first talk to your neighbors. If your fence abuts their property, they might have a right to add some input on the structure. Here are five tips on how to be neighborly about building and maintaining a fence:

Watch the boundaries

Before marking off a fence line, make sure it’s on your property. Take a good look at your plat or consider a new survey to ensure that when you build the fence, it’s on your property.

Talk to your neighbors

If you want to keep the neighborhood peaceful, at least talk to adjoining neighbors about your fencing plans. Let them know what it will look like, how big it will be and if you expect any help from them. Nobody wants to watch you build a fence and then see you at their front door asking for reimbursement after it’s all done.

Determine who maintains it

This is similar to the “talk to your neighbors” item. If you’re building a fence around your property and it’s on the shared property line, determine who is responsible for maintaining it and repairing it in the future. The probability is that if you build it without the financial support of your neighbors — though they might have agreed to your plans — the upkeep could fall squarely on your shoulders. That falls in the category of “you built it, you’re responsible for it.” If, however, a developer built the fence as part of a residential development, the responsibility might belong to the property owners who share the fence and property line.

Check zoning and POA/HOA rules and regulations

Believe it or not, some neighborhoods have rules against certain fences or even any fences on your property. Prevent receiving a “cease and desist” letter while in the middle of construction by checking first. The regulations also might spell out the physical requirements of your fence as far as height and materials. Property owner or homeowner association rules and requirements might also lay out exactly who is responsible for the fence upkeep if on a shared boundary.

Take care of the fence

Once you’ve installed the fence, take care of it. This doesn’t just mean the side facing your home and property. If you are responsible for the entire fence, take care of both sides.

Of course, the best way to prevent fence problems with your neighbors or local neighborhood associations is to hire a reputable and knowledgeable fencing company. The best in Corpus Christi can be found on this website. Use the red “My Favorite” button to save a list of companies you like, then call for bids. Your fencing project is now underway!

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