How to Choose a Fence Contractor

How to Choose a Fence Contractor

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You need a fence. You’re wondering how to find a fence contractor, let alone how to choose a fence contractor that can deliver the results you need.

Even with the internet, where you can search for fence contractors near you, there are still some tips and tricks that can help you to choose the right fence contractor for the job. Here are our top tips.

Search Local

The first thing you need to do when you’re trying to choose a fence contractor is start your search close to home.

Fence contractors charge for travel time and accommodation if they need to stay overnight to complete your job. So, when you’re on the internet searching for “fence contractors near me” you’re very much on the right track.

It’s always cheaper to hire a local fence contractor than to bring someone in from out of town, so if you can find someone in your city or town, it will almost certainly make your fence more budget friendly.

Ask Them What They Specialize In

The next tip we have for those wondering how to choose a fence contractor is to ask fence companies what they specialize in before you take the conversation any further.

Some fence companies only do residential fences. Others specialise in commercial and industrial fences. Some only do wood fence, while others won’t do it at all.

When you contact fence companies about a quote, find out if what they do aligns with what you need before you arrange a site visit or request a quote.

Make Sure They’re Licensed

It’s tempting to find a fence installer on an online classified site, pay them in cash for their services, and save some money on your fence project. However, unless the job is very small or it’s someone you know personally, that’s not advisable.

Fence companies need to have a valid business license, and there are many other local and regional registrations and regulations they need to comply with. They need to have workmen’s compensation coverage, public liability insurance and all kinds of other coverage and certifications.

If you’re not sure what your fence contractor should have, contact your city’s business or building department, and find out from them. They should be able to give you a list of all the most important licenses, certifications, and registrations.

 Ask About Warranties and After Sales Service

Fences, like everything you buy, aren’t always perfect, and things can go wrong after your fence company has left your site.

If it’s a manufacturer’s defect or a problem with the installation, repairing or replacing the product or affected item should be covered by a warranty.

Most fence companies offer some kind of labor warranty, and there is often also a warranty on fence materials. Ask what kind of coverage you will have if you choose their company, and also consider how long they’ve been in business. A warranty is only worth the paper it’s written on if you can use it, and if you’re dealing with a very new company, they might not be around when you need to!

Get a Quote

Once you’ve whittled your list of prospective fence companies down based on the tips above, it’s time to ask for a quote.

Good fence companies will not give you a quote for your fence without a visit to your site to inspect the fence line, or a detailed fence plan, specification, and scope of works, if you’re looking for commercial or industrial fencing.

At this point, you should also ask your fence company whether they will take down and remove your old fence, and if they do any extras you need, which might include related work like gate automation, or as built and shop drawings for your fence project, operation, and maintenance manuals and so on.

Never assume that any of these services are included in your quote or offered by the fence company you are talking to. Not all fence companies do drawings in house, and many don’t remove fences or provide detailed closeout documents. Many fence companies won’t apply for permits or do cable and service locates either – so be sure to ask if those are services you need.

Ask About Lead Times

The problem many people face when figuring out how to choose a fence company is that most of the great fence companies are always fully booked, and you could wait a long time for them to have the time in their schedule to install your fence.

If you need your fence installation to start on a particular date or time of year, or it needs to be completed by a specific date, be sure to discuss this with your shortlisted fence companies before you place an order.

If you want a particular fence product that needs to be ordered in from a manufacturer, you should also find out what the lead time for delivery of that product is.

Timing is a big factor in many fence projects, so don’t skip this step!


When it comes to how to choose a fence contractor, price really shouldn’t be at the top of your list.

It’s important, but it should only be a factor once you have checked all the other boxes for the contractor or contractors you are considering.

It’s also very important to ensure that you’re comparing apples with apples. Read quotes and specifications very carefully, because there might be seemingly small differences that could make all the difference. If there’s any doubt is comparable, ask the contractors to confirm this before you proceed.

Financing and Credit

Also related to price, and important when figuring out how to choose a fence company is the issue of financing and credit.

Some fence companies do offer credit terms to qualified customers, while others might offer third party financing, but some don’t offer payment terms at all. In that case, you would usually pay a portion of the value (often 50%) when you place the order, and the balance on completion.

Be sure to ask your shortlisted fence companies what kind of payment options they offer, and if that’s a factor, consider it when choosing your fence company.

References and Track Record

Next on our list of tips about how to choose a fence company is to ask for references and check online reviews about their company. However, you should always take online reviews with a pinch of salt – they’re not always a true reflection of the company’s products and services.

It’s often better to ask for contactable references for projects that are similar to the fence you need installed, and then contact a few to find out how the project went.

Take Your Time

As you can see, there’s a fairly long process involved in choosing the right fence company for your project, and while you might not need to use all these tips, the more you know before you place an order, the more likely you will be to get the results you expect.

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