Finding the dream homestead is an exciting time, but choosing the right fencing can be a daunting task. There are many different options between barbed wire, field fence, wood, vinyl, composite, chain link and more. Before investing thousands of dollars into a new barrier system, there are several questions to keep in mind prior to the final selection.
Purpose of the Fence
When fencing a large property, what should the new fence do? Is it keeping in pets, livestock or children? Perhaps more privacy is needed. Do hunters come around unannounced? Other questions will arise once the function of the fence is determined, such as, how much time should be spent on maintenance? More maintenance will be required for wooden fences than chain link fence. Are gates needed for the driveway or people? What is the total budget for the fence? Answering these questions will narrow the focus of the best-suited materials.
Before you Dig
Now that the fencing materials have been decided, there are other considerations to address before digging that first hole. Do you live in an area where building and construction permits are needed? Some rural communities do not require a city permit to build, but check with the local county courthouse to make sure. Another thing to be aware of is utility, gas, cable, internet, or fiber optic lines buried on the property. Any of these utility companies will come out and do a free survey to find buried lines and mark them for the proposed fence site. It is definitely worth getting this done to avoid digging through any of these while building the new fence line. A simple phone call will save you a huge headache later.
Finding a Contractor
It is almost time to start building the fence. Depending on the budget, hiring a contractor may be in order. Building the fence yourself will save a lot of money, but requires specific skill sets. Fence building is a huge job that can take months to complete depending on the size of the acreage. Here are a few ways to find a quality fence contracting company. Talk to friends and family for any referrals they used when having a fence installed. In many rural areas, a good resource is the neighboring farmer who just put in a new fence for their livestock. Most are happy to share information on big projects like this. Another option is to call your local Better Business Bureau to find a highly rated company.
Questions for the Contractor
Call at least three companies to get estimates for comparison before singing the contract. Ask the companies if estimates are free. The contract company should be licensed, bonded and insured in case of any accidents while on the property. Ask if they will obtain the necessary building permits. Also, how does the fencing company expect payment? What is the estimated time to complete the job? Many times, a fence contractor will also help clients choose the correct fencing material for their needs.
As you can see, there are many questions to ask before you decide on the perfect fencing solution for a large property, but once your fence is built, you can enjoy the peace of mind that your livestock, pets and children are safe.