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Panel Fencing Cost & Price Guide

Installing a new fence may be a priority for a homeowner. After moving into a new home, they may need to keep children and pets safely contained or just desire more privacy. Depending on where they live, they might even find that they must legally install a new fence after adding a swimming pool or hot tub. The fence keeps children and animals away from those water features, and it adds extra protection and security to the home. Panel fencing is an alternative to traditional fencing. Available in different colors, materials and designs, panel fencing lets homeowners install the perfect fencing to match their home.

The Costs

  • Average cost of wood fencing panels: $30 to $50

  • Average cost of vinyl fencing panels: $60 to $100

What is Panel Fencing?

When most people think of fencing, they think of traditional picket fences. Panel fencing is a better solution for those who want more privacy. Other forms of fencing feature large gaps that do little to block out neighbors and other homes. Panel fencing comes in large panels that span a greater distance, and the panels won't have any gaps between the pieces. Homeowners can add one or more gates or doors to the fence to give themselves more options on how to enter and leave the yard.

Fencing Materials

Panel fencing typically comes in two different types of materials: wood and vinyl. Vinyl fencing usually only comes in a few shades, including white and tan, but the fencing comes in a range of designs and styles. Some homeowners might like the look of a large privacy fence with lattice work along the top, while others enjoy the modern look of a fence with clean lines. Wood fencing comes in sealed and unsealed varieties, but homeowners should seal the wood before or immediately after installing it. Though wood often comes in fewer designs, some people prefer the look of natural wood.

Vinyl Fencing Pros

The installation of vinyl fencing is often cheaper and easier than the installation of a wood fence. The panels come ready to assemble and don't require any preparation. Vinyl can often last for years with little to no maintenance. Homeowners simply spray the fence with a garden hose to remove dirt and debris, and they can remove stains with a little soap and water. Many people like knowing that they don't need to worry about insect infestations or rotting in regards to vinyl fencing.

Vinyl Fencing Cons

Despite the benefits of using vinyl panels, this type of fencing does come with some disadvantages. Vinyl is susceptible to mildew and mold, which can spread from the fence to the interior posts. Some people don't realize that vinyl fencing still requires wood fence posts placed evenly around the lawn. The panels fit over the wood, which keeps the fence from tipping or falling. If the mold spreads into the wood, homeowners will need to replace those posts. Repairing any broken or damaged fencing is another potential problem. Homeowners will need to remove the entire panel and replace it with a new one.

Wood Fencing Pros

Wood is a versatile material. Though homeowners will have fewer design options, they will have more color options. They can paint or stain the wood to the color that they want, and if their tastes change, they can strip the wood and add a new coat of paint or stain. Wood is just as durable as vinyl when sealed before or right after installation, and many homeowners enjoy the look and style of a wood fence. Even with wood panels, making repairs is fairly easy. Homeowners can remove the broken section and replace it with a new piece of wood or picket without removing the entire panel.

Wood Fencing Cons

Even properly sealed wood can suffer some problems after installation. Many people dislike that the wood boards warp or bend, but this problem more commonly occurs in areas that experience sharp temperature changes. Ice, snow and rain seeps into the wood, which leads to swelling. When the wood dries out, the excess moisture changes the shape and look of the wood. Some people also complain that wood fencing requires more maintenance than vinyl fencing. They need to paint the wood every few years and clean the wood on a regular basis.

Another potential problem with wood panel fencing is insect infestations. Termites can burrow into the wood and reach the fence posts. When this occurs, the fence becomes unbalanced and unstable. Termite damage and damage caused by other types of insects can lead to cracking and holes in the wood and even cause the fence to fall down. Though sealing the wood often helps with this problem, not all contractors take the time to seal the wood.

Panel Fencing Costs

The total cost of a panel fence relates to the labor costs and the costs of the material used. Wood fence panels are available from most home improvement stores. An eight-foot wood panel measuring six-feet tall costs around $30, but that same panel can cost $50 if the manufacturer pressure treats and seals the wood first. The cost of the wood doesn't factor in the cost of staining or painting the wood either.

Vinyl fencing is typically a little more expensive than wood fencing. A six-foot section with a lattice edge around the top costs around $90, while a more basic vinyl panel might cost $60 for a smaller piece. Vinyl fence pieces can easily reach $100 or more per panel, depending on the design and color that the homeowners want.

Adding a new fence to a home also requires some other supplies, including fence posts and concrete. Installers will dig holes for the posts and use concrete or cement to secure those posts. Other costs include labor costs, with contractors charging an average of $30 to $50 per hour. The average costs for a fence come in at around $20 up to $50 per linear foot. The materials used and the cost of labor can increase or lower that price.

Last updated on Apr 28, 2014

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