Properly secure your home with the right fencing can be a minefield. Use our handy tips to get you on the right track.
When it comes to rear gardens, privacy is likely to be as much a concern as security. Choosing the right fencing means finding a solution that addresses both these concerns without having any negative impact on your enjoyment of the space.
Closeboard fencing is an ideal choice for suburban rear gardens. As the name suggests, it's constructed from wooden boards closely secured together. This type of fencing is both strong and effective at cutting out visibility, reducing would-be intruders' ability to scope out your garden or any rear access to your home. At the same time, the natural wood looks great, and doesn't detract from the relaxed ambience of your garden.
Another fantastic fencing option for securing your home is trellis. While its construction is lightweight, trellis panels are a great multi-tasker when attached to the top of your closeboard fence. Not only do they give your fence a little extra height, they're also ideal for growing prickly trailing plants - that's twice the deterrent.
Remember, a fence is only as secure as its weakest point. It's important to keep a wooden fence in good repair, replacing any broken boards and shoring up any sagging points. And don't forget to give some thought to your back garden gate.
While a heavy duty bolt might help keep intruders from coming in, it's just as important to think about getaway routes out - potential burglars will be, and a bolt can be easily slid open from the inside. Thieves are deterred by potential obstacles to escape, and fitting a lock to your rear garden gate - and keeping it properly locked - helps to make your home a less appealing prospect.
Of course, if your home is part of a terrace, chances are that at least one of the fences bordering your back garden will probably belong to a next door neighbour. While their choice of fence is out of your control, there are measures you can take to increase security along it.
For example, the Metropolitan Police advise that when selecting plants for your flower borders, you could consider dense, thorny species that will makes your garden a less appealing prospect to intruders than those with easier access.
To properly secure your home, it's just as important to choose the right fencing for the front of your property. Rules about boundary fences differ here, meaning that a six foot high closeboard fence is usually not an option. As a general rule, fences bordering a highway should be a maximum of one metre high.
And as it happens, closeboard fencing usually isn't the best choice here. You want your front door to be accessible - to visitors, to the postie - but you don't want it to invite would-be intruders. In the front garden, high closeboard fencing or solid brick walls provide convenient cover for those who don't want to be seen - so they're often best avoided.
When it comes to security at the front of your home, visibility is your ally. You want to make your home less appealing to thieves without losing any of the kerb appeal that drew you to it in the first place. With the right fencing, your home will be secure but still look welcoming when you return at the end of the day.
Metal fencing is an excellent choice for the front garden, as it's incredibly strong and durable while keeping visibility at a maximum. Available in a range of designs coming in at less than one metre tall, metal fencing for the home has an elegant appeal that adds to the charm of your property.
To potential thieves, however, it says something quite different: no hiding place. The open vertical metal construction means that intruders would be visible to neighbours or passers by, and that makes your home a less inviting prospect.
Other access points
And finally, don't forget about any side access to your home. Alley ways between properties appeal to thieves because they promise a degree of cover from which to scope out or break into homes.
Even if your home is mid-terrace and you've fitted a lock to your rear garden gate, it's worth thinking about securing access via alleys or side passages. The best way is to speak to the other neighbours whose homes can be accessed from the same route - if you all club together, it can be surprisingly cheap to fit a lockable metal gate to deter thieves.
Properly securing your home with the right fencing really can reduce the chances of a break in. Choosing the best fencing for the job means deterring thieves while also giving you and your family peace of mind.