Build your own privacy screen – tips for planning and designing in the garden

The garden is a sought-after place that most people also use as a private area, and if you want to build a privacy screen yourself, this is the place for you. This article can help you avoid major pitfalls and costly mistakes in planning and installation. In this way you will find a cheap solution for your privacy screen. We'll show you practical tricks and techniques that professionals can use to build a nice privacy fence themselves. You can of course adapt this to your needs and your landscape. So if you create such privacy garden ideas yourself, you will save a lot of time, headaches and money. This also ensures that you can correctly carry out your DIY project the first time.

Build optimal privacy protection yourself cheap

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First of all, make sure that you actually find the right area that gives you the privacy you want. Pay attention to the correct height and consider how high you want to build your privacy screen yourself. It can happen that after construction you find that your neighbors next door can still see you. However, if you build a privacy garden yourself, you must also ensure that the surroundings do not fall from the view. From an aesthetic point of view, you should also be careful not to waste material, money and time to build a fence that doesn't match your garden.

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To determine whether you are building a privacy screen terrace, for example, you should consider the proportions of your garden. How high your private area must be and other ideas for privacy fences are the first important factors. In this case it is also a good idea to find a helper with a high piece of wood or cardboard. Before doing this, you can cut the piece to the height of your proposed fence to let the perimeter run. Sitting and standing, follow the view over the box while it is moving. So you can determine how much privacy your fence actually offers, for example if you build wood yourself for your privacy.

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So you can quickly decide how high your fence must be or whether it is impractical to build one at all. However, this should be high enough to shield your garden. Then you can consider alternatives such as fast growing dense trees or bushes that are not subject to the same height restrictions as fences. If, for example, you are building a privacy screen from decking boards yourself or have a garden house that you would like to partition off, you can build directly around this area.

Place the posts at a distance

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Get the right distance and keep the fence posts at most 3 meters apart so that the privacy screen does not sag when planning the construction. Fewer posts save you digging, but in the long run you will be paid for by wind and gravity if you fence in your privacy. The more posts you have, the stronger your outdoor privacy fence becomes. The distance of 3 meters is a good rule of thumb. This also gives the fence enough strength to withstand the wind.

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For example, if you are building a metal privacy screen yourself, you can lay out the posts while determining how to build your fence. The trick is to separate it with piles to mark the hole positions exactly 3 meters apart. The thickness of the posts give you a few centimeters for more freedom. You need this if you consider several variations. This means that you can create a creative privacy screen yourself if you position the panels between the posts. Also plan for at least three horizontal supports to support the weight of each slab. If you save on horizontal material, you can come up with panels that sag. This can happen even if you span less than 3 meters between the posts.

Build your own privacy screen and observe the requirements

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If you already know how to build your privacy screen yourself, you must understand the local regulations, rules and building codes before installing it. Otherwise you may have to dismantle the fence. So there is more than one reason to get such a building permit. If you build the fence in the wrong place or too high, you may be forced to tear it down. Privacy screens are very popular, and if you build without a permit, you will likely still have to buy one without a permit and even pay a fine. However, if you apply for a permit, you will receive a copy of the rules that apply to fences in your area. This includes the required setbacks of property boundaries, sidewalks and streets as well as permissible heights that normally vary from front to back yard.

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If you live in a settlement that has its own private regulations, you can also contact the association or the planning committee. Its rules can be even stricter than the rules of the city or town. Some regulations even include a choice of colors or materials. You may need to provide a sketch for design approval if you want a back yard wooden fence. So identify the boundary of your property by determining the stakes before you build a DIY privacy screen. Start with a property plan that will help you build on the property. You should be able to mark the corners of your yard. You can usually request a photocopy of your property plan if you don't already have one. However, don't assume that your property is perfectly square or rectangular. Many can be wedge-shaped or have unusual shapes.

Add fence door

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If possible, plan at least two fence doors during construction and make them as wide as possible. Have you ever lived in a house where the gates were too small or in the wrong place? Then you know how tedious it is to walk around half of your property in order to get into the courtyard through doors that are too small or to shod wheelbarrows, for example. So also think about access to your garden. If you have a neighbor who you would like to visit, want to access your garden from both sides of your house, or want to facilitate access to the park behind the house, you should consider a plan.

Build your own privacy screen – design and construction

stylish garden table cozy with fence made of wooden slats and lights

Take a look at the different fence designs and change the design of the ideas for privacy fences according to your requirements. A solid, high fence can block curious glances, but it can also wall you in. Such a boring, monolithic, and material-intensive design may not be the best solution. Your privacy screen does not have to consist of design, height or material. For example, if your garden borders a wooded area, an inexpensive, low chain link fence will do the job. So you can keep the dog in the house and at the same time enjoy the view of the forest. Perhaps a nicely designed, pretty privacy screen with an inviting gate is required on both sides of the house facing the street. A higher fence then fits on the side of the courtyard facing the neighbor. A high, inexpensive and functional protective fence would be highly recommended in this case.

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Changing the style or configuration to adapt the privacy screen to different parts of your yard can be a successful strategy to keep material costs down and reduce the workload. It can even make the yard more interesting. Plan for higher fences to protect privacy and lower ones to keep the price down and improve the view. You don't need tools to plan the design of a fence, but you do for the installation. For this reason, avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all materials ready in time for the construction of such a project.

Material selection and own needs


With so many fence styles to choose from, there are several factors to consider. Pay attention to your own skills and available tools. Even a simple wooden plank fence can be functional and beautiful, but more complicated projects with intricate angle cuts or recycled architectural elements are possible if you have the know-how and the right equipment. You should also consider your climate and neighborhood.

build your own fence

In some areas, a wooden fence can deteriorate quickly, and a metal fence or block wall may be a better choice. Some county building codes may also determine what type of fence you can build. After all, your choice of project may depend on how many meters you need and what the material price is. If your budget is tight, free items like pallets can be recycled into an attractive wooden fence.

Homemade bamboo fence in the courtyard with garage and white table in summer

So if you have kids or pets you want to keep indoors or outdoors, or just want some privacy from your neighbors, DIY privacy screens are a great way to save money on your landscaping. Always call your local energy provider and have them mark your lines before digging. Nothing can stop a DIY project than hitting a utility line. Not to mention that they could bill you for the damage. Also make sure that you are ready to use consumables flexibly. Some building instructions, for example, suggest types of wood that are common in the country but can cost more in your country. It is best to ask for suggestions in your hardware store. A fence not only has to be functional, it also has to become an attractive part of your landscape. Also consider safety when using power tools.

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