Updated: Dec 07, 2021
Reviewed by Adam Graham remodeling expert. Written by Fixr.com.
Fencing improves a home’s curb appeal, offers security for children and pets, and can provide privacy. Fences have been said to make good neighbors, and they may improve your property values as well. There are many types of fences, including various styles and materials. This results in a wide cost range for installation.
The national average cost to install a fence is $3,000 to $7,000, with most people paying around $4,500 to install 200 linear feet of 4’ tall cedar wood picket fencing with a gate. This project’s low cost is $2,000 for 200 linear feet of installed 3’ tall galvanized chain link fencing. The high cost is $9,000 to install 200 linear feet of 6’ tall black wrought iron decorative fencing with a gate.
Cost to Install Fence
|New Fence Cost|
|National average cost||$4,500|
No matter which type you choose, it will be sold and installed by the linear foot. This is true whether you want a decorative fence across the front of your yard or to completely enclose a half-acre surrounding your property. The average cost range for installing a new fence is $12 to $35 a linear foot, depending on the materials chosen.
The most common installation size is around 200 linear feet, which encompasses a ¼ acre. However, you may only want to install it in a portion of a yard or have more property to enclose, impacting your costs. Below are the average costs for installing fencing in different areas.
|Number of Linear Feet||Average Costs (Installed)|
|25 Linear Feet||$300 - $875|
|50 Linear Feet||$600 - $1,750|
|75 Linear Feet||$900 - $2,625|
|100 Linear Feet||$1,200 - $3,500|
|150 Linear Feet||$1,800 - $5,250|
|200 Linear Feet||$2,400 - $7,000|
|300 Linear Feet||$3,600 - $10,500|
|400 Linear Feet||$4,800 - $14,000|
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Fencing Cost per Acre
If you have a very large property, you may choose to fence it entirely. This may be necessary for security purposes or to contain animals or livestock. Not all materials make a good fit for this project. While barbed wire, split rail, and sometimes chain link may be used, other materials may be cost-prohibitive for large areas. One acre equals approximately 836 linear feet. The cost to install the most popular materials for this project is $836 to $12,540 per acre. Below is the average cost to install fencing on properties of different sizes.
|Number of Acres||Average Cost (Installed)|
|1 Acre||$836 - $12,540|
|2 Acres||$1,672 - $25,080|
|3 Acres||$2,508 - $37,620|
|4 Acres||$3,444 - $50,160|
|5 Acres||$4,180 - $62,700|
New Fence Cost by Material
They are available in a wide range of materials, with each material having its own cost, aesthetic, maintenance, and style. Some materials may be better suited to specific purposes, such as chain link being used for security, while others are used in different situations. For example, wood can be used for privacy, security, and boundary definition. Below are the average costs per linear foot for the various fencing materials and the costs per linear foot for each fully installed.
|Material||Average Cost per Linear Foot (Materials Only)||Average Cost per Linear Foot (Installed)|
|Barbed Wire||$0.08 - $3||$1 - $8|
|Chain Link||$2.25 - $20||$12.25 - $40|
|Wood||$5 - $15||$15 - $35|
|Composite||$9 - $25||$22 - $40|
|Aluminum||$10 - $30||$15 - $40|
|Vinyl||$10 - $30||$15 - $40|
|Steel||$10 - $50||$15 - $60|
|Wrought Iron||$13 - $30||$22 - $40|
|Glass||$62 - $110||$72 - $130|
Barbed Wire Fence
The cost of a barbed wire fence is $0.08 to $3 a linear foot for material and $1 to $8 a linear foot for installation. They are a good low-cost option for fencing in animals and adding security to your property. This makes them a good choice for property owners who have several acres to fence at once because the material can be installed fairly quickly and for much less than other types of fencing. Barbed wire can be found in several materials, impacting the cost and durability. The material may be influenced by the type of animals you keep on your property.
Chain Link Fence
The cost of chain link fencing averages $2.25 to $20 a linear foot for material and $12.25 to $40 a linear foot for installation. They are a good option for security purposes. They can also be used to make a yard or play area safer for pets and children. You can add additional material to a chain link fence to offer privacy. Chain link comes in several heights, gauges, and colors. Thicker, higher fences cost more than smaller, thinner ones.
The cost of wood fencing ranges from $5 to $15 a linear foot for material and $15 to $35 a linear foot for installation. Wood fencing is very popular for many reasons. It can create a privacy, security, or decorative boundary fence. They come in many styles, wood species, and sizes. They can be small split rail or picket fences to mark a border or large dog-eared ones for privacy. The exact cost of the project is influenced by the type of wood you choose.
The cost of composite fence materials is $9 to $25 a linear foot and $22 to $40 a linear foot for installation. There are many types of composite fencing. This material is very similar to the material that your composite deck may be made of, including materials like Trex. Composites often create the look of wood but with lower maintenance and better durability. Most of them can be found in a privacy style.
The cost of an aluminum fence averages $10 to $30 a linear foot for materials and $15 to $40 a linear foot for installation. They are a popular choice for metal options. They come in many decorative styles, including some that mimic the look of wrought iron. Aluminum is lighter and lower in maintenance than iron. It can dent more easily than steel or iron, however. This makes it a good choice for decorative purposes but not as good a choice for security fences.
The cost of a vinyl fence is $10 to $30 a linear foot for materials and $15 to $40 a linear foot for installation. They are also known as PVC fences because the material is made from polyvinyl chloride. This is a fairly low-maintenance option that has many styles. Like wood, it can be found in many types including split rail, picket, and larger privacy fences. Depending on your area, vinyl may not be the best choice because it can crack in very cold weather and soften and warp in very hot weather.
The cost of a steel fence ranges from $10 to $50 a linear foot for the materials and $15 to $60 a linear foot for installation. They come in many different types of steel and styles. Steel can be galvanized, stainless, corrugated, or palisade. Each type has its best uses, cost, and style. Some types like palisades are particularly durable, making them a good choice as a security fence. Other types are more decorative and make an alternative to wrought iron fencing.
Wrought Iron Fence
The cost of a wrought iron fence averages $13 to $30 a linear foot for the materials and $22 to $40 a linear foot for installation. They are often used for both decorative and security purposes. These are heavy fences that are usually painted or powder coated black. They may be simple and plain, or they may have a lot of finials, spikes, and decorative design elements. Like most metal fences, the thicker the material the wrought iron fence is made from, the higher its costs for material and installation.
The cost of a glass fence is $62 to $110 a linear foot for materials and $72 to $130 a linear foot for installation. They are most commonly used around pools, although they may be used on decks and patios. Their main purpose is to add security to an area without impeding the view. Most of the costs for this type are in the material. They are not difficult to install, and the panels connect with metal brackets, which can vary in size.
Fence Cost by Purpose
Many people install fencing for a reason that goes beyond enhancing the appearance of their yard and home. Sometimes, a fence is necessary, such as enclosing a pool area. In other cases, you may want to create privacy, make your property more secure, or better define the boundaries around your home and yard. Some can be made of temporary materials, such as garden fences, which are often put up by homeowners using wire made for the purpose. However, most of them are made to be permanent additions to your property. Many different materials and styles of fencing can be used.
Below are the average costs of different fences based on the average size of the area being enclosed and the most common materials for that purpose.
|Purpose||Average Costs (Material Only)||Average Costs (Installed)|
|Backyard||$225 - $5,000||$900 - $7,600|
|Boundary||$450 - $5,000||$1,800 - $7,600|
|Pool||$480 - $13,200||$1,440 - $15,600|
|Privacy||$1,000 - $5,000||$3,000 - $7,600|
|Security||$2,000 - $10,000||$5,000 - $12,000|
The cost of a backyard fence averages $225 to $5,000 for material and $900 to $7,600 in total, including installation. This assumes that the backyard fence is between 100 and 200 linear feet in total size. If your backyard is larger or smaller, your costs could be different. Backyards may be enclosed for several reasons. You can fence the area because there is a pool, you have children or pets you want to keep inside, or you want privacy in this area. For this reason, there are many different materials and styles of fence that you can install in this area.
The average cost of a boundary fence is $450 to $5,000 for the materials and $1,800 to $7,600 in total. This assumes you are installing the fence on all boundary lines for a ¼-acre property. If your property is larger or you are not installing boundary fencing on all edges, your costs could be different. They are sometimes called grudge or spite fences. They are put up solely to mark the edge of your property and separate it from your neighbor’s. They can be made of many materials and do not necessarily need to be fences. They can be made of rocks or shrubs.
The cost of a pool fence ranges from $480 to $13,200 for materials and $1,440 to $15,600 installed. These costs assume your pool is 12’x24’ in size, and you are surrounding only the pool and deck and not the entire area. If you have a larger or smaller pool, your costs could be different. You can use many different materials for a pool fence. Most people use a material that keeps children and pets out but allows some visibility. This can include metal, glass, and some types of vinyl and composite fences. They are commonly at least 5’ high to ensure security of the area.
The cost of the materials for a privacy fence averages $1,000 to $5,000 and $3,000 to $7,600 installed. This assumes a fence of between 100 and 200 linear feet. If yours is larger or smaller, your costs may be different.They can be made of many different materials. However, they are always solid in design, meaning you cannot see through them or easily over them. Therefore, anyone inside the enclosed area will have some privacy. They are most commonly made of wood, vinyl, and composites but can be made of other materials.
The cost of the materials for a security fence ranges from $2,000 to $10,000. The cost of a security fence installed is $5,000 to $12,000. This assumes a fence that is between 100 and 200 linear feet in length. If you need to install one that is larger or smaller, your costs could be different. They are designed to keep people out. They are usually taller than average and made of highly durable materials. They may include barbed wire in the design or be made in a style that makes them difficult to scale.
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Average Fence Cost by Type
Fences can be found in many different types and styles. Sometimes, a specific type or style creates a look or function that suits your needs better than another type. There can be many variations in style, and many styles can be broken down into subtypes, such as a picket fence becoming a gothic picket and a dog ear becoming a dog-ear-and-blank. The style can also impact your overall costs. Below are the average costs per linear foot for different fencing materials and their average installed costs.
|Type||Average Costs per Linear Foot (Material Only)||Average Costs per Linear Foot (Installed)|
|Electric||$1 - $3||$6 - $9|
|Split Rail||$3 - $6||$6 - $11|
|Post and Rail||$6 - $10||$9 - $15|
|Picket||$5 - $13||$15 - $33|
|Panel||$5 - $19||$15 - $39|
|Dog Ear||$8 - $15||$18 - $35|
|Lattice||$8 - $15||$18 - $35|
|Shadow Box||$9 - $19||$19 - $39|
|Palisade||$9 - $19||$19 - $40|
The cost of the materials for an electric fence is $1 to $3 a linear foot and $6 to $9 a linear foot installed. They help keep livestock and animals inside the enclosed area. You can add an electric fence onto any type by adding an electrified wire or turn any standard wire fence into an electrified one by adding current. Frequently, they have areas where you can safely unhook them to allow passage. They will also likely have a switch located nearby so that you can turn them off and on as needed.
Split Rail Fence
The cost of a split rail fence averages $3 to $6 a linear foot for the materials and $6 to $11 a linear foot installed. Split rails are one of the lowest-cost wood fences. They consist of posts that have holes or slots cut into them. The rails are long split pieces of wood rather than milled planks. The ends of each rail fit into the slots, usually overlapping one another on the edges. The rails themselves are not usually nailed into place, meaning installation is fast and easy once the posts are set.
Post and Rail Fence
The cost of post and rail fences ranges from $6 to $10 a linear foot for materials and $9 to $15 a linear foot installed. They are similar to split rail in style. However, the rails are milled boards. They attach to the inside or outside of the posts, meaning they are a little cleaner looking than split rails. They also take more labor to cut and install properly, raising costs. Post and rail is most commonly wood but can be found in vinyl.
The cost of a picket fence is $5 to $13 a linear foot for materials and $15 to $33 a linear foot installed. There are many different types of picket fences. Pickets are individual boards that install vertically beside one another. The shape and how far apart the boards are from one another give the style. For example, gothic picket fences have a keyhole shape at the top of each picket. They can have the pickets spaced so that you can see between them, or they can be created as privacy fences.
The cost of a panel fence averages $5 to $19 a linear foot for material and $15 to $39 a linear foot installed. They come in many materials and styles. Most picket, dog ear, lattice, and horizontal fences are panel fences. This simply means they go up one large panel or section at a time rather than using individual pieces like post and rail or split rail fences do. They are almost always sold by the panel, making installation faster than if they were built onsite.
Dog Ear Fence
The cost of a dog ear fence ranges from $8 to $15 a linear foot for materials and $18 to $35 a linear foot installed. They can be found in wood, vinyl, and composites. These panel fences are made out of boards with a distinct shape at the top. The edges of each board are clipped at an angle, while the top is horizontal. There are many different iterations of the dog ear fence. This includes variations that use three boards to form a single dog ear and alternating “blank” boards with the dog ear panels to give your fence a variety of looks.
The cost of a lattice fence is $8 to $15 a linear foot for materials and $18 to $35 a linear foot installed. They are a type of panel fence. They usually are made of solid planks on the bottom half, with a section of decorative lattice at the top. They are most commonly made of wood but can be found in composites. The lattice on the top of it is generally topped with a rail for added stability. They are usually in a privacy style, meaning they are frequently tall enough to offer privacy, despite the lattice section on top.
Shadow Box Fence
The cost of a shadow box fence averages $9 to $19 a linear foot for the materials. The cost of a shadow box fence installed is $19 to $39 a linear foot. They are most commonly made of wood and composites. They consist of panels that are offset from one another. One set of panels is closer to the viewer, while the second set is farther away. This creates a sense of depth and intricacy to the fence. They are usually in a privacy style. They are often tall and are solid so that they create privacy around a yard or area.
The cost of a palisade fence is $9 to $19 a linear foot for the material. This type installed averages $19 to $40 a linear foot. They are typically made of metal but can be made of wood. They are often considered security fences. They do not have a top rail. Instead, the planks or rods that make up the fence end in a sharp point or spear. It is generally tall, making it difficult to climb over.
Labor Cost to Install a Fence
The labor to install a fence varies by the material and style. Of these two, the material tends to be the larger cost consideration, helping you understand the cost of your structure. This is particularly true since they come in multiple materials. Looking at the labor cost by material provides a more accurate labor cost than only looking at the type or style.
The general labor costs for fence installation range from $5 to $20 for most types. Some types have higher labor costs than others. Those purchased as panels or made from individual pieces may have different labor costs, depending on the type you are creating.
Below are the average labor costs for each material and the total installed cost for each.
|Material||Average Labor Costs per Linear Foot||Total Costs per Linear Foot (Installed)|
|Barbed Wire||$0.92 - $5||$1 - $8|
|Vinyl||$5 - $10||$15 - $40|
|Aluminum||$5 - $10||$15 - $40|
|Steel||$5 - $10||$15 - $60|
|Chain Link||$6.75 - $15||$9 - $25|
|Wrought Iron||$9 - $10||$22 - $40|
|Wood||$10 - $20||$15 - $35|
|Glass||$10 - $20||$72 - $130|
|Composite||$13 - $15||$22 - $40|
Fence Replacement Cost
The average cost to replace a fence is $3,600 to $7,800. This assumes an average removal and disposal cost of $600 to $800 for most fences between 100 and 200 linear feet. Once the old one is removed and disposed of, your new fence costs are the same as any new installation.
Components of an old fence can sometimes be reused when installing a new one of the same kind. For example, a wooden panel one may have posts that are in usable condition. In this case, the posts could be left in place and only the panels replaced, dramatically reducing the cost of the new installation. If it must be removed entirely or you are changing materials, your costs will range from $3,600 to $7,800.
Fence Post Installation Cost
Fence posts are installed along with the rest of the structure, and their installation cost is included in the overall installation price. Sometimes, you may need to install a single new post to extend a fence or replace a post. In this case, you may be charged by the single post.
Fence posts come in the same materials as the rest of your fence. It may be possible to mix and match in some cases, such as using a metal post with a wooden fence. The installation costs do not vary tremendously by material or post shape. However, the post costs vary by material and shape. Some shapes are less than others, particularly for wood fences. The post shape does not tend to impact metal, composite, or vinyl fences in terms of cost the way wood posts do. The average labor to install a post is $40 to $150 per post.
Below are the total average costs to install fence posts by material.
|Post Material||Total Costs per Post (Installed)|
|Vinyl||$50 - $200|
|Wood||$50 - $200|
|Composite||$50 - $200|
|Metal||$50 - $210|
|Concrete||$70 - $250|
|Brick / Stone||$90 - $300|
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Gate Installation Cost
It is very common to install a gate in your fence. This is particularly true if you are completely fencing in an area because the gate allows you to enter and leave easily. In most cases, gates designed to sit inside a fence line have similar linear foot costs to the fence itself for the labor and installation. The cost of the gate ranges from $40 to $200 per gate, depending on the style, size, and material. With installation, total costs range from $50 to $400.
If you need a driveway gate, your costs average $1,000 to $6,000, fully installed for the gate and labor.
Fence Materials Comparison
When choosing your fencing material, compare the various attributes of each material so that you can find the best fit for your property. Some materials are higher in maintenance, while others may be a better fit aesthetically or have better sustainability. We compared the most popular materials below so that you can make the most informed choice for your project.
All fences require some maintenance. This material will be left outdoors and exposed to the elements. Maintenance includes regular repairs, cleaning and painting the material, and replacing panels or posts to maintain integrity. Some materials like vinyl seem low maintenance because they do not require painting the way some wood fences do. However, the vinyl planks and panels tend to pop out often, meaning that while you do not have to paint it, you must spend a lot of time putting it back together. Aluminum, steel, and wrought iron are all very durable and low maintenance, but the paint or powder coat used on them may fade or chip, exposing the metal.
The materials below are ranked from low to high based on the amount of work needed annually to keep them looking their best.
|Material||Difficulty of Maintenance|
Fences can also be ranked by durability, meaning how long they last when properly maintained. Some materials like vinyl are relatively inexpensive but do not last very long in harsh climates. Others like metal fences last for decades when properly cleaned and painted. Some wood fences can also last for a significant time, but because wood comes in many species, it does not rank as high as metal or composite because some woods like pine do not last as long.
Below are the average durability rankings for the various materials, from good to poor durability levels.
If you are concerned about the environment and want to use eco-friendly materials, consider the material’s sustainability. Some materials, such as those used in metal fences, can be recycled nearly endlessly and be made from recycled material. Other materials like wood can be made using sustainable practices, providing many options to choose from. Materials like vinyl and composites may contain recycled material, but they cannot often be recycled, lowering their overall score.
Below are the rankings for the various fencing materials for their sustainability, from highly sustainable to low sustainability.
When looking for a fence to enhance the appearance of your property, some materials do a better job than others. Some materials are highly functional like barbed wire and chain link fences. They are not designed to look nice, however. So while they can add security to your property, they will not enhance its appearance. Other materials like wrought iron are specifically chosen for their aesthetics. When installing a fence that is visible from the road, it will become part of your home’s curb appeal. Therefore, choosing a material like wood, composites, and some highly aesthetic metals can improve your overall curb appeal. The materials below are ranked from high to low based on how aesthetic or attractive they can be.
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Enhancement and Improvement Costs
When installing a boundary fence or putting up a one at the edge of your property, you may first need a land survey. Land surveys determine the borders of your property so that there is no dispute over the enclosed area. The cost of a land survey ranges from $400 to $1,000.
Many materials do not require painting. Others, such as some types of wood, need to weather first and then be painted later. If you choose to have your fence painted, expect to pay $1,000 to $2,500 on average.
If you have an older fence that needs to be cleaned or repainted, you may need to have it pressure washed first. Pressure washing helps remove old grime and loose paint. The average cost to pressure wash a fence is $125 to $235.
If you have a gate, you may decide for security to lock this. One method that allows access is to install a keypad lock. Keypad locks cost between $150 and $500 installed, depending on the model.
You may choose to install lighting on your fence. This can be part of your landscaping, or it can be used near gates and openings. The average cost to install lighting on a fence ranges from $120 to $500, depending on the lighting type.
Additional Considerations and Costs
- Repairs. Your fence may need repairs over time to keep it looking and functioning at its best. Expect to pay between $200 and $850 for most repairs.
- Permits. Permits are not often required for fencing, but this varies by location. Always check with your local municipality to be sure.
- Resale value. They can enhance the resale value of your home. Depending on the material, a fence can have a return on investment (ROI) ranging from 50% to 70%.
- Fence decor. Some of them can have decors like finials, decorative posts, post caps, and gates. This can increase the cost of your fence by $5 to $30 a linear foot, depending on the material and decor.
- Warranties. Some of them have warranties on either the material or labor, while others have warranties on both. Always check with your installer to find out which warranties may be available.
- Do I need a permit to build a fence?
This depends on where you live. In most areas, you do not need a permit, but some municipalities may require one. Always check with your town or city hall for more information.
- Does a fence increase property value?
In general, fences increase property values, but it depends on the fencing material. Expect an average ROI of between 50% and 70% for most fences.
- How much is a new backyard fence?
Backyard fences cost $900 to $7,600, depending on the yard size and chosen material.
- How long does it take to put a fence up?
This depends on the material. Wood and vinyl fences can go up in 1 to 2 days, while some metal fences take 3 to 4 days to install.
- Is a hedge considered a fence?
This depends on where the hedge is installed. If installed on the boundary line between your property and your neighbor’s, then yes, a hedge can be considered a fence.
- How much should it cost to replace a fence?
The average cost range to replace a fence is $3,600 to $7,800, depending on the size and material. This includes the cost to remove and dispose of the old fence.