Fence Material Choices

If you have a picture of your new fence in mind, then you probably have an idea of what material you'd like build it with. Fence materials vary in price, durability and maintenance needs.

Here is the quick and dirty breakdown of your fence options:

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Wood

Classic, easy to install, inexpensive. Some wood fences needs to be stained or painted every few years. Talk to your local wood supplier or contractor about what woods and grades are available in your area and how they compare on price.

Pros and cons of wood fences »

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PVC Vinyl Fencing

Laminate coated composite plastic which looks like a painted wood fence. People love vinyl fences because they do not need to be painted. A common complaint is that vinyl fences don't really look much like real wood, though they look good from far away.  Vinyl fences require relatively low maintenance, and simply need periodic cleaning to avoid build-up of dirt and algae.  The initial investment for a vinyl fence is typically higher than for a wood fence.

Pros and cons of vinyl fencing »

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Chain Link

A hardworking no-muss, no-fuss, utilitarian kind of fence. Inexpensive, low-maintenance and quick-to-install. Chain link does not need to be painted or stained and has a long life span.

Pros and cons of chain link »

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Aluminum or Steel Fencing (Ornamental Iron)

Styled to look like wrought iron. Usually more expensive than wood and vinyl and professionally installed. An aluminum fence is maintenance free and rust proof, but not necessarily as strong as sturdy as the name and look imply. Aluminum and steel fences can bend and dent.

Pros and cons of aluminum or steel fencing »

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Composite Wood

Made of molded plastic and wood fibers and looks the most like real wood compared to vinyl fencing. TREX, known for decking, is a common composite fence brand. These materials don't require paint or stain, but will need occasional deep cleaning.  Composite wood is not as structurally strong as real wood.

Pros and cons of composite wood »

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Masonry (Brick, Cement or Stone)

An exterior wall fence made of cement, brick, or stone. This expensive fence will add a "stately air" to your home. Heck, you might have just turned your home into an estate. Call in the pros to install.

Pros and cons of a masonry fence »

 

 Here is a general material comparison 

 

Residential Fence Materials

Material Cost

Install

Required Maintenance

Durability

Average Range Per Linear Foot Installed

Wood

medium

moderate

high

varies

$12-$24

Composite Wood

high

moderate

moderate

fair

 $20-$30

PVC Vinyl

high

easy

low

very good

 $20-$28

Chain Link

lowest

easy

low

very good

 $15-$21

Ornamental Iron/Aluminum

highest

pro

low

good

 $40+

Masonry

medium

pro

low

very good

Varies 
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