Trespassing deterrence. Not wanting to look at neighboring yards. Privacy. Whatever the reason, some homeowners choose to put up a fence. This can be especially important in places like DFW, and the surrounding areas, that have substantial plots of land available. There are plenty of people who own ranches or work with larger animals, and need something to keep the livestock fenced in. But what style of fence is the best for your yard? What decisions go into the fence building process? Can I put a fence on my property line? Most importantly, what are the laws regarding fence on a property line? Knowing your legal rights as a homeowner can keep the city or county from giving your fence project the ax before it’s completed.
Anyone wanting to build a fence on their property line should look into city or county property line fence laws. Most will have rules, regulations, and laws posted that determine what you can or cannot do. It’s important to follow these guidelines. Even if you have a neighbor or neighbors who say they don’t mind, they could potentially challenge your fence further down the road. They also might move, and the person who replaces them might care a great deal. If you belong to a homeowners’ association, they might decide to get involved in the fence building process. If you follow the listed guidelines and rules, there isn’t much anyone can do to keep you from building your dream fence.
What does property line mean?
A property line is the technical boundary between your property and surrounding properties, as listed by the county. If you’re unsure of where your property line is, there should be maps in the county assessor’s or county recorder’s office. You can ask for any maps that have listed boundary lines that are available for public viewing. If there is already a fence on your land, this can help determine if there is an existing issue with your property line vs fence that is already on the property.
How Close Can You Build a Fence To Your Property Line?
This should be one of the first things you decide after verifying the property line. Different building jurisdictions allow different things. Some cities or counties stipulate that a fence must be 2, 4, 6, or 8 inches away from the property line. Others will let homeowners build directly on the property line. Building directly on the property line can cause issues and disputes. There also may be issues with a tree on property line fence, like overhanging branches. Technically, you can only trim branches up to your property line, but not in to your neighbors property. If a tree damages a fence from neighboring property, that neighbor is liable for the damages to the fence. But what if there is a tree directly on the property line? You will have to reach an agreement with your neighbor, or risk litigation.
Do I Need My Neighbors Permission to Put Up a Fence?
Homeowners who follow the city and county laws and regulations should not need their neighbors permission to put up a fence. However, your neighbor could become involved if putting up a fence means replacing part of the boundary for their property. Or if they consider the style of fence you choose to be an eyesore. There is the potential for them to take you to court to have the fence changed, or even removed. If your neighbors think you’ve built the fence out of spite, they’re much more likely to take you to court.
If your neighbor already has a fence in place, then you can ask them to connect your fence to theirs for continuity. However, then you become half responsible for damages, repairs, and upkeep to the shared fence. This is also only possible if you’re allowed to build directly on the property line. Otherwise, you’ll need to build your own fence to correct distance away. If you’re building a fence on a property line outside of the suburbs, things can be simpler or more complicated depending on the neighbors. If you’re putting up a fence and you’re the only one using it for a boundary, then you have sole liability for it. If your neighbors use it as a boundary as well, then you share responsibility for it.
Property Line Fence Ideas
You’ve done the research. You know the rules. You’ve spoken with the neighbors, and they’re supporting your new fence completely. Now it’s time to pick your style, your materials, and contractor. But what type of fence on property line should you build?
- Wrought Iron It’s solid, it’s durable, and it presents a classic Gothic-era look. It’s not especially common, so it maybe hard to connect to neighboring barriers, but it is a good choice for front and back yards. These can have custom-made iron gates for a consistent and uniform look.
- Security Somewhat similar to wrought iron, but with more of a focus on keeping people out than looking fancy. These are usually concrete or iron, with spikes at the top to deter intruders from climbing them.
- Chain Link It’s cost effective and allows people to see through it. If you want to create a
boundary for a field or plot of land without a focus on security or privacy, this is the choice for you. If you want a shorter fence for your front yard, this is a cheaper and more durable alternative to the picket fence.
- Picket This is the fence of the classic “American Dream” home. Picket fences can be used to as a boundary to define property lines, as well as keep in small children and pets. However, the picket fence is more for style and decoration than anything else.
- Pine/Cedar The classic wooden fence for backyards. This option generates more privacy than the chain link or picket alternatives. If installed by professionals and treated correctly, it can last just as long and be just as durable as other options.
- Custom Maybe you want wrought iron on top of a small brick wall? You have a design in mind, or an idea that you can’t quite visualize, and you want to combine elements. There are professional contractors out there who will work with you to help you realize your dream fence.
You’re almost finished. You’ve answered the question “How close can I build to my property line?” You coordinated with neighbors and county guidelines to ensure that your dream fence isn’t upsetting or in an illegal place. You’ve designed your perfect boundary to your property that will keep intruders out, and your family, pets, or livestock safely inside. Now you just need to have it built. Just like you would only trust professionals with roof repair, you should trust professional specialists to help you build your dream fence. If you or someone you know is interested in building a custom fence on a property line in Plano, TX, contact DFW Fence Repair at 469-342-3003 to get started today!