With more people spending time at home and planning stay-cations in their own backyard, the idea of increasing privacy comes up frequently in conversation. The old saying, “good fences make good neighbors” is not too far off the mark, especially when you consider all the squabbles that neighbors can have with each other over the years. Kids, dogs, overhanging trees – some things cannot be repaired easily, while others can be mended with a high-quality fence. If fencing is not approved in your local area or if you aren’t quite ready to take the plunge and put up a fence or a wall, take a peek at some of the other ideas here that Fall River homeowners can use to improve privacy in their own backyard.
Home Insurance in Fall River
Whenever you build anything, such as a fence, retaining wall, or even put in a new driveway, make sure to contact your local Fall River insurance agency and let them know. Not only will you want this new work to be included in your coverage in case of a claim, but you will also want to find out if any of the projects you are working on could potentially decrease your monthly premium. Certain home improvements can make you eligible for discounts, so it pays to speak with your agent about homeowners insurance in MA to make sure you are getting all of the coverage you need and at the best price available.
Your local Fall River homeowners insurance agent will likely suggest that you contact the city to verify the property line before you do any type of building. Contact local utility companies to have them mark all of the lines for electricity, water, and gas before you do any digging – even if you are just putting in a flower bed. This will save you time, trouble, and money that might be necessary to repair any damage you inadvertently do while digging around the yard. Planting a tree too close to water lines can cause issues with root growth and freezing in the winter. Even planting a row of hedges too close to the house can result in damage. It is better to be safe and get everything checked out ahead of time so you won’t have to dig anything out after you finish installing it.
Alternatives to Fences
Living walls can be just as effective, but will still require approval from your neighbor and a definitive verification of the property line. You don’t want to invest time and money in growing a wall just to have to tear it down if someone complains. Planting hedges can take a bit of time, but there are certain types of plants that are perfect for this and will allow you to have a fairly full hedge within just a season. For a year-round effect, consider using evergreens, which can be decorated for the holidays in the winter and will look great regardless of the time of year. Other living options include a simple lattice trellis, which can be covered with climbing vines and other plants. Once again, make sure to choose something that will work in your area and ensure that you are not encroaching on a neighbors’ yard.
Screens are a simple no-installation-required solution that is great for renters, temporary privacy, or for situations when you don’t want to have to get permission. Set up the screens on your patio or other outdoor living area and adjust as necessary to get the effect that you desire. This can be a great add-on for backyards where the existing fence is too low to provide privacy or if the material of the fence can be seen through, such as chain link or cinder block. If you are tired of neighbor kids and pets peeking through while you try to enjoy a barbecue out on the patio, this could be the solution for you. Another popular option is to add outdoor drapes to a pergola or other covered patio area. Choose waterproof drapes and take down at the end of fall before snow hits to increase longevity.
Increasing Security for Home Insurance in Fall River
While there are many neighborhoods where fences are not allowed for one reason or another, Fall River homeowners can still find ways to increase security. Instead of putting fencing around the entire property, why not consider adding a built-in privacy screen or fence around your outdoor living area. A large patio made from concrete, pavers, stone, or even a wooden deck, can include fencing to keep that area private and blocked from view. Speak with your Fall River insurance agency about any improvements that you make and materials that you select. Be sure to choose solutions that won’t increase fire or safety risks for your home or family and get any required approvals from the city or county before building. Sometimes a combination of existing fence, hedges, and a patio screen can be what is needed to create a truly private and secure oasis.
Other ways to increase security include security cameras, planting “prickly” shrubs and bushes underneath windows to deter burglars, and putting in motion-detection lighting around the home. Once again, Fall River homeowners should speak with their insurance agent about any potential discounts for homeowners insurance in MA if they add lighting, security, and other significant features. Contact Paul Sullivan Insurance Agency by calling 508-678-9611 to speak with one of our agents about any questions you might have about home insurance in Fall River or to get a FREE QUOTE to provide coverage for your home.