Continued from page 1

The wrought-iron fence is gaining in popularity in more upscale neighborhoods, according to Ms. Pulscak, who says, “It looks classy but is expensive.”

Minimal maintenance is needed on these ornamental fences, and they also provide an open and airy look while still keeping the yard enclosed.

Sustainability is a buzzword these days, and it’s no different when it comes to fences. Like elsewhere in housing, one of the biggest trends in fencing is that homeowners are looking for sustainable fencing solutions.

The American Fence Association (AFA) says contractors and manufacturers are working together to meet “green” demands without dramatically altering the material or construction costs, while at the same time retaining the aesthetics and longevity of fencing.

Contractors are turning to new materials, such as bamboo, that minimize the impact on the environment. The AFA says reclaimed lumber also can make for an attractive fence.

Although some homeowners would rather not fence in their yard and favor an open, no-boundary look, this does not appear to be a trend, according to industry experts, who say many homeowners still like the privacy and security of having a fenced-in yard.

Mr. Beauchump says he thinks that with people opting to travel less and stay home during the summer months, they are looking to create a private sanctuary in their backyard.

The smaller the lot, the greater the need for a privacy fence, according to Ms. Pulscak, who adds that it is especially true in summer with the popularity of outdoor cooking and entertaining.

“A fence is especially necessary when one has dogs; also, some families feel their younger children can play more safely with a fenced yard,” Ms. Pulscak says. She also says some gardeners prefer to have a fence to keep out the neighborhood pets.

Experts warn homeowners to check with their homeowners association before deciding what kind of fence to buy. The HOA often mandates what types of fences are allowed.

Having a fence can attract buyers to a home, especially an attractive fence that lends itself nicely to the backyard, helping create a parklike setting.

“A fence in good condition is a good selling feature,” Ms. Pulscak says.