Choosing A Fence For Your Home: Pros & Cons Of Wood, Vinyl, & Chain-Link

If you are having a fence built around your home, you may be overwhelmed with all of the options. Fences are a great way to have extra privacy, keep children safe, and allow pets to run free. If you're trying to decide which type of fence to build, here is a breakdown three popular options: wood, vinyl and chain-link, and the pros and cons of each one.


A wood fence is one of the most common choices. It's practical and allows for many different design options. With wood, you can build several types of fences such as:

  • picket fence
  • privacy fence
  • shadowbox
  • custom design

Wood is higher maintenance than many other types of fencing. It is susceptible to dry rot, especially if you live in an area with heavy rain and snow. However, wood fencing also pays a price in constant sunshine. The sun causes wood to warp and fade over time.

Although wood is one of the least expensive materials, it will need yearly maintenance such as replacing boards, sealants, and staining to keep it looking its best.

To allow your wood fence to last long, don't let the bottom rest on the ground. Building your fence so it sits a couple inches off the ground will keep the wet or snowy grass from rotting the wood more quickly. If you have pets, this may not be an issue unless you have a dog that's a digger. Digging under a wooden fence is easy, and you may want to opt for another material.


Vinyl is a low maintenance alternative to wood fencing. If you buy high-quality vinyl, most people won't notice a difference from afar. The vinyl will not dry rot, warp, or fade like wood. It also doesn't splinter, making it safer for children.

Although vinyl sounds like a no-brainer with all of its benefits, it has its drawbacks as well. The first drawback that makes many people pass it up is the initial price. While a wood fence will range from $10 to $25 per linear foot, a vinyl fence can range between $20 and $55. However, vinyl lasts about a decade without needing any maintenance, making it much less expensive in the long-run if you can flip the initial bill.

Since vinyl is sold in panels, you can't make fun, custom designs out of it. The panels come in a few different designs and colors so they don't all look the same, but if you want something completely unique, vinyl is not for you.


Although chain-link isn't ideal for vanity fencing, it definitely has its own set of benefits. The first benefit of chain-link is the price. It is the most economical fence that you can put around your home. You can install a chain-link fence around your home for about $400. Along with the low initial cost, it's maintenance free. Your fence can stand tall for decades without any worry.

Another great perk about this fence is security. It will keep your children and pets safely in your yard while deterring burglars. Burglars are much more comfortable braking into a home with a privacy fence because they can hide behind it, and chain-link leaves people completely exposed.

If you're interested in "green living" a chain-link fence is a great way to show your support. About 60% to 80% of a chain-link fence is comprised of scrapped metal so it's most previously recycled materials.

Wood, vinyl, and chain-link fences are three of the most popular to own. They all have their own advantages along with disadvantages. Whether you're looking for privacy, vanity, or security, there is a fence contractor that will suit your needs and budget.