18 Cheap Fence Ideas

These creative ideas for affordable fences will help you gain privacy, border definition and good looks at a fraction of the price.

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July 20, 2020

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Be Fence Smart

Whether you're building a fence to mark your property line, keep pets or children in or offer some privacy, there are a multitude of options. But some are cheaper than others. Our handy guide to saving money when planning your fence will help you make smart, budget-friendly choices.

Split Rail Fence

Split rail fencing is a handsome option especially for ranch-style homes, and a great way of demarcating large swaths of your property line. Because there is so much space between the rails, this type of fence requires less material, and therefore costs less.

Make the Right Material Choice

When it comes to fences, wood is less expensive than vinyl, but of course entails far more maintenance and upkeep. Treated pine tends to be the most affordable, and also durable wood option. Cedar tends to be a pricier wood for fencing, and redwood and teak at the top end. Vinyl, wrought iron, brick or stone fences are the most expensive.

Corrugated Metal Fence

Corrugated metal is a budget-friendly option that you might not have considered. Sheets of metal can be easily cut to size and paired with either horizontal or vertical wood posts (or both, as seen here). It’s a great choice for a more modern home.

A Pallet Fence

The ultimate cheap fence; this one's free, made from repurposed pallets. Pallets can be found from construction sites and other locations (check first to make sure you can take them) and can be installed horizontally or vertically.

Picket Fence

An American classic, the picket fence is a relatively affordable fence pick and comes in an array of decorative options.

Learn More : Turn a Picket Fence Panel Into a Gorgeous Garden Gate

Privet Hedge

Great for a formal hedge or shrub, privet has semi-evergreen, dense foliage that can reach up to 10 feet high and serves as a great "living fence." The downside, however, is that it grows very quickly and usually needs trimming about four times a year. The leaves and berries of the plant are considered poisonous and can affect humans and animals alike. Other options for green living fences include yew —a slow-growing hedge option — and spotted laurel.


You can grow clumping bamboo to serve as another type of living fence. But by all means avoid the extremely invasive "running" type of bamboo which can quickly overtake your yard.

Hog Wire Fence

The low-profile and very affordable hog-wire fence has traditionally been used by ranchers to keep lifestock in. But it can also be an attractive option if you prefer an open look to your yard or garden, as in a vegetable garden. A heavy-gauge wire is best to stand up to the elements. To save even more money you can use hog wire fencing without wooden frames like the ones shown here.

Wattle Fence

Thin branches woven into a lattice pattern make for a cost-effective but also incredibly aesthetic and sturdy fence with shades of the British countryside. Get creative with your raised bed style by weaving shrub and tree trimmings to make a wattle raised bed, as shown here.

Beachfront Horizontal Fence

Using thin cables in a horizontal design can maximize a special setting and keep costs low.

Put Your Money Where It Has the Biggest Payoff

When you use handsome wooden posts to anchor your fence entryway, inexpensive wire ends up looking much more finished and refined. And this option is great to deer- and animal-proof your vegetable garden at minimal cost. This fence proves if you put your money at the entry, you can skimp a bit more with the plain wire fence.

Unique DIY Privacy Fence

Need a little privacy from those nosy neighbors? Our unique take on the traditional privacy fence will have you relaxing in peace in no time. Use found objects including window frames, doors or shutters and a simple wooden frame to create privacy and separation between your yard and the neighbors.

Learn More : Amazing Outdoor Walls and Fences

Simple Wood Fence

Choose a simple wood fence design like this and you get a custom look without the expense of a stone, wrought iron or other more costly options.

Learn More : 20 Design Ideas for Wooden Fences

Wood + Wire

With a simple wood framework, you can cover a lot of acreage with a combo of wood supports and wire fill-in.

Think Vertical Versus Horizontal

Horizontal fences have a chic, modern look that works very well with contemporary and midcentury style homes, but just remember, the longer boards required for a horizontal fence tend to make them more expensive than a vertical fence.


Another great option is to use lattice as the predominant material for your fencing. While this won’t necessarily provide a lot of privacy, it’s a great option if you're looking for a more open and airy look.

Chain Link Fence

OK, it's not the most aesthetic option. But chainlink is affordable and a great way to keep pets or children safe. And you can enhance the look by choosing a black vinyl coated variety, painting the fence a shade of green that allows it to blend into its background, or allowing a vine or climbing plant to grow over the fence. Some options include wisteria, creeping fig, Boston ivy, honeysuckle and clematis. This rustic patio area features a black chain link fence that contains the dog run located just behind the space.

Learn More : 15 Perennial Vines

Simple Chicken Wire

Whether you choose a neater, more attractive wooden frame for your chicken wire, or just tall posts with chicken wire as shown here, a combination of wood and chicken wire can make for a very affordable fence. If protecting and containing chickens is what you are after, give your chickens a place to roost and run with a coop like the one shown. Wire mesh ensures that your backyard flock is safe from predators.

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