Do Good Fences Make Good Neighbors? Privacy in an Era of Commonplace Surveillance


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We live in an age of surveillance: security cameras at work, satellite monitoring of public entertainment venues, and small aircraft equipped with video cameras can have even the least privacy-conscious Americans wondering how much it might cost to install a roof over their backyards. Thankfully, for most of us, privacy fence panels can go a long way towards making backyards secure, quite, and peaceful. Typically, fences have small gaps between vertical sections, but privacy fence designs eliminate any outside intrusion.

The fencing industry as a whole is worth more than $50 billion every year, and fence contractors should be able to work with homeowners to satisfy their needs for privacy. While some home and business owners look for fence styles that can accommodate climbing vines for decorative purposes, true privacy fence panels are available in a variety of building materials. PVC privacy fences, wooden fences, and even some metal fences are all typically available for local builds.

Although custom fencing options do enable homeowners to build around their entire properties, many people opt for the installation of smaller sections of fence. Having an outdoor entertainment area that is shielded from the view of people passing by on the sidewalk can be an attractive option for a smaller project. Custom pool fencing can allow homeowners increased privacy and security for their families in larger cities or in areas with occasional wildlife sightings.

Most current zoning permits for fences, local authorities report, include plans for “stockade” style privacy fences. Privacy fence panels can be an effective and attractive option and should deliver a satisfactory return on investment in the event the home or business is sold. Some businesses even install privacy fences around trash dumpsters or other areas that they want to shield from their customers; an attractive outdoor environment may work to generate repeat business.

Fences for homes and businesses can be coupled with garden gazebos, canopies, and other outdoor seating areas. Some homeowners may want to create an outdoor picnic area or may even, if the neighbors are willing, install a small door in their privacy fences in order to permanently connect their backyards.

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