If your property lacks the privacy you need, you'll be glad to know there are plenty of options for reducing sightlines, blocking noise, and creating a more serene home for your family. With the right plan in place, you might never want to move!
5 Secrets for Increasing Privacy
1. Install a privacy fence. If you're in a neighborhood where your backyard is exposed to the houses next to and behind you, then you probably feel a little like you're living in a glass castle. Sure, you might have a nice backyard, but every time you go outside to relax, you have this creeping suspicion that somebody is watching you. (And if you have nosy neighbors, you might not even be able to read a book or enjoy a glass of wine with your spouse without being interrupted.)
The easiest way to create privacy is by installing a privacy fence. There are a variety of options here, but USA made vinyl fencing, like the PVC panels from Duramax, are always a good choice. You can go with full privacy fences that prevent people from peering into your yard, or semi-privacy fences that have small gaps in between the pickets. This latter option provides significant privacy at a distance, but also allows some light to peek through.
2. Use privacy screens. If you already have a chain link fence installed in your backyard, you don't have to tear it down. There are other ways to achieve greater privacy without starting over from scratch. One option is to add a privacy screen to your exposed fence.
Privacy screens are inexpensive and durable. Typically made from a weather-resistant mesh fabric, the material simply attaches to the fence and clips on the posts. It prevents 80-90 percent visibility. Another option is to purchase plastic slats that fit vertically through the fence links. However, this option doesn't look quite as good and is prone to deteriorating with high winds and inclement weather.
3. Plant strategic landscaping. If you're looking for the most attractive and effective solution, you should think about improving your landscaping. In fact, the right landscaping can totally change the feel of your entire property (particularly when you have neighbors close by).
For starters, think about how you can landscape along the property line to reduce sightlines. Ideally, you want some type of evergreen tree or shrub that grows fast and thick. There are several species that can grow as much as two feet per year. For a fast solution, give these a try.
Another option is to install a trellis or privacy panel in front of the area where you spend the most time (like a patio or deck). You can then grow ivy or install hanging plants to give yourself some extra protection.
4. Build a fountain. While the primary goal is typically reducing visibility, you also have to be cognizant of sound. This includes both noise pollution outside of your property, as well as the prevention of noise leaving your property (like private conversations you have on your back patio). You can address both of these issues in one fell swoop by building a fountain.
Fountains do an effective job of creating a calming, ambient sound that neutralizes outside noises and makes you feel at peace. It can also mute private conversations that happen in your backyard and prevent nosey neighbors from listening in on you. For best results, install fountains near your property line and/or alongside areas where you spend a lot of time in your yard.
5. Use blinds and shutters. If you don't already have blinds and shutters in your house, you should consider adding them. Something like plantation shutters are great because of how easy they are to open and close. If you want something hands-free and "smart," you could install programmable sunshades that automatically go up and down based on the time of day.
Turn Your Property Into a Private Oasis
Your home should be the safest place in the world. It's a place where you deserve to relax and unwind without having to worry about who's watching or what other people think. By taking a proactive approach to privacy, you'll enjoy your house so much more. Invest in these upgrades sooner rather than later!