How Much Does It Cost to Build A Fence?

by Team HomeServe
a newly installed cedar picket fence

Fences are both fashionable and functional. Installing a fence can increase your home's curb appeal and add another level of security. It can also keep pets or children in, keep unwanted animals out and give you some privacy even if you’re surrounded by other homes.

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Wondering how much it would set you back to install a fence? Here’s a cost guide.

Fence Installation Costs

According to Bob Vila, it typically costs anywhere from $1,743 to $4,431 (CAD 2,339 to CAD 5,947) to install a residential fence, but most homeowners can expect to spend an average of $3,059 (CAD 4,105).

You can more accurately calculate what your project may cost by determining how many linear feet your fence will span. Depending on the material you choose, fences typically cost $16 to $56 (CAD 21 to CAD 46) per linear foot installed — or $6 to $44 (CAD 8 to CAD 59) per linear foot for materials and $10 to $12 (CAD 13 to CAD 16) per linear foot for labor based on data from Inch Calculator. Gate installation may add an extra $200 to $600 (CAD 268 to CAD 805) onto the total cost.

If you’re installing the fence in a particularly rocky or hilly area, labor costs may be higher. Some contractors charge by the hour. Most charge $30 to $80 (CAD 40 to CAD 107) per hour. A 150-linear-foot fence will take about 20 hours to complete.

Types of Fences

Cost for materials ultimately comes down to the type of fence you want. Here are some of the most common types of fences and how much they cost, according to Bob Vila:

Vinyl Fence

Vinyl fences are durable and long-lasting. They come in lots of different colors and designs, including wood-look. Vinyl fences require minimal maintenance. To have a vinyl fence installed, it costs $10 to $40 (CAD 13 to CAD 54) per linear foot. Installing pre-built panels instead of having the fence built from scratch could significantly reduce labor costs.

Chain-Link Fence

Chain-link fences are often a popular choice because they’re easy to maintain. Metal isn’t prone to rot, so they can last a long time. Chain-link fences are best for keeping in children and pets. Because they’re see-through, they don’t make good privacy fences. Installed, they cost about $15 to $30 (CAD 20 to CAD 40) per linear foot.

Wood Fence

Wood fences — often made of treated pine, oak, redwood, cedar or cypress — are also relatively cheap to install. They can act as a privacy fence, but they’re also ideal for sectional fencing within your property. Because they’re susceptible to termites and rot, wood fences are less durable and require a lot of upkeep. They cost $18 to $45 (CAD 24 to CAD 60) per linear foot, depending on the type of wood used.

Wrought Iron Fence

Iron fences last longer than aluminum or steel, but you’ll pay for the additional durability. Wrought iron fences cost $30 to $55 (CAD 40 to CAD 74) or more per linear foot. Complex configurations, such as multiple corners or gates, might increase the cost of installation.

Metal Fence

Metal fences are usually made of aluminum or steel. They can be assembled off-site and brought in for installation. Metal fences are also prone to rust, but generally require little maintenance. It costs about $30 to $45 (CAD 40 to CAD 60) per linear foot to install a metal fence.

How Much Does It Cost to Fence 1 Acre?

To fully enclose a 1-acre piece of land, you’ll need 836 feet of fencing. To calculate how much it’ll cost, multiply 836 by the fencing cost per linear foot.

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Fence Repair Costs

Repairing your fence is significantly cheaper than replacing it, though the total price depends on the type of material used. The average cost of repairs is $550 (CAD 738).

You may save a few dollars if you recycle your previous fencing materials, such as posts, nails and wood.

Other Factors to Consider

In addition to materials and fence size, here are some other factors that may impact installation costs:

Permits and Surveys

Depending on your jurisdiction, you may need a building permit to put up a fence. Utility lines should be located and marked before any digging begins. You’ll also want to have a land survey done to ensure your fence lies completely on your property.

Condition of the Land

Flat terrain and soft soil are ideal for fence installation. If the space is hilly or rocky, more work will be required to install a fence, driving up the cost. The area may need to be leveled, entailing more work.

Fence Removal

You’ll have to tear down your old fence and clear the ground before installing a new one. This increases the total project cost. You can take out the old fence yourself to save money.


Most fences need gates. Depending on the height, style and material of the gate, the price of installation will vary. The number of gates you want installed will affect the installation cost, too.

Professional Installation or DIY?

Fence installation is a labor-intensive job. Your contractor, if you choose to hire one, will dig post holes, erect posts and set them in concrete. To save money, you can do the last step yourself and nail planks in place with a rented nail gun.

If you choose to do the entire process yourself, you can also rent tools like a post-hole digger or auger. You can also use prefab fencing panels instead of installing your fencing board by board. Before you start, check your local building codes to ensure you're allowed to put up the type and height of fence you want.