If you’re installing a new fence around your property, it’s a good idea to practice good fence etiquette. Following local zoning regulations, communicating with your neighbor before the installation, and following basic rules of politeness will go a long way towards keeping the peace (and avoiding litigation.) Here are some of the top tips to keep in mind when constructing a new fence in Wilmington.
If you build your fence even one inch over your property line, your local municipality can force you to tear it all down and start over. Since doing this will be quite expensive, it’s important to know exactly where your property starts and ends. Most fence companies will obtain the necessary permits and licensing themselves, but don’t leave it all up to them; obtaining your property’s line drawing or some other type of official documentation will help ensure you have done your due diligence. Note that most fence companies will install new fences within a foot of the property line, to be on the (literal) safe side.
It’s up to your fence company to obtain local permits, obey local zoning regulations, and ensure that your new fence meets all legal requirements. For example, fence height is usually limited to 6 feet for backyards, and 4 feet for front yards. More restrictive rules often apply to corner lots, where blind curves can limit driving visibility. Don’t just leave all this up to chance–make sure to vet your fence company carefully and verify that it is licensed, professional, and trustworthy.
While fence installers will usually handle state and city restrictions, they are not responsible for meeting your Homeowners’ Association requirements. If certain restrictions must be met, it’s up to you to learn them and share the information (in writing) with your contractor. Note that HOAs can dictate your fence’s style, height, and appearance right down to the color, so if you had a certain type of appearance in mind for your fence, you may have to reconsider.
Building a fence on your property line without having any discussion beforehand could make you seem unintentionally hostile or antisocial. It’s far better to mention to your neighbor that you will be building a fence, and ensure that you are both in agreement on where your property line lies. Again, settling this beforehand will save you from spending thousands of dollars on a fence rebuild.
Note that, unless you want to be really friendly, there’s no need to show your neighbors the planned design or structure of your fence. As long as everything meets state and HOA requirements, they cannot legally influence your decision.
Once the fence is built, you can avoid aggravating your neighbors by keeping your fence clean and well-maintained. Don’t allow it to sag into their yard, or become an unkempt eyesore. A good way to keep up with repairs is scheduling a yearly maintenance inspection with the same fence company that performed the installation. Fence inspections cost very little, and can fix small problems that might develop into expensive issues over time.
If you need a Wilmington NC fence installation, replacement, or repair, Cape Fear Fence is here to help. Just give us a call to schedule a free, no-commitment estimate from one of our experienced fence contractors! We look forward to helping you experience the privacy, peace of mind, and curb appeal of a brand new fence in Wilmington.