Top 50 Best Privacy Fence Ideas – Shielded Backyard Designs
There are fences intended for ornamentation, and fences built to secure the equivalent of a domestic stronghold.
But what if you are merely looking to reclaim a bit of privacy for yourself and your surroundings?
What if style and curb appeal certainly factor into your decision, but the ultimate choice resides in the fence that keeps the world out and encompasses you within yours?
These top 50 best privacy fence ideas are designed with a simple goal in mind: to raise an attractive but nonetheless opaque barrier between your home and the uninvited gaze of the outside. Privacy fences can be easily customized to blend with your house’s exterior, employing the use of various woods, stains, and concealing angles.
Similarly, a combination of latticing and expertly planted hedges can shield your habitat in a charmingly clever bit of old-fashioned implementation. Even the ingeniously spaced fencing panel scheme allows an openness on your side and absolute seclusion from the other.
Privacy is not just a luxury, but a right that all are entitled to. While standards of privacy may be dwindling in our present world, that doesn’t mean you can’t still achieve it within the sanctity of your home.
A finely selected and well-positioned fence affords you the refuge that is the hallmark of the hard-earned home, while lending a brush of accent style that only enhances your property’s appeal. Don’t let another season pass you by under the prying eyes of neighbors and passersby; the nouveau privacy fence all but begs to be appointed.
1. Wood Privacy Fence Ideas
When the average person thinks of a privacy fence, a wood panel design usually comes to their mind. They’re sturdy, affordable, and can provide as much privacy as you’d like them to. They can last for years, especially if maintained properly.
One of the best things about wood privacy fences is that they’re easily adaptable. They take paint nicely, so color changes from year to year are not a problem. You can also customize a wood fence easily. With some time, a miter saw, and a nail gun, you can add decorative touches or trim to a basic fence, making it look like it cost far more than it did.
You can purchase fence panels but you should also consider building your own for a truly custom installation. This allows you to choose your own slat spacing, design, height, and materials. The end result will be far nicer than an off-the-shelf panel that you can purchase at the local home center.
If you need some inspiration on how to build your own wood privacy fence, here’s a great video detailing the steps and tools required.
2. Metal Privacy Fence Ideas
Metal has become a popular fencing product due to recent trends and to be honest, they look pretty cool. Many of these fences are built with corrugated roofing material, which makes them tough and long-lasting.
Most times that you’re adapting a product for unintended use, you have to think outside the box to make it work. Luckily, this project has been tackled enough that there are plenty of how-tos and DIYs available on the internet to get an idea of how it works.
Corrugated roofing isn’t your only option for a metal fence. You can purchase metal panels (like this one from Home Depot) and posts meant specifically for fencing. They’re perfect if you’d like a low maintenance option that requires less thought and adaptation, so check out the metal products in your local home center’s fencing section. These fence panels are typically more expensive than other products, but they’re tough and look amazing. They also come in several different styles and sizes, so finding a metal fence to create some privacy won’t be an issue for you.
3. Natural Privacy Fence Ideas
Some people just don’t like the feeling of a fenced-in backyard. It makes them feel cramped, like an animal in a crate. If that’s you, but you recognize that you could stand to do with a little more privacy, consider a natural fence to block out the rest of the world. These fences can consist of trees, shrubs, or a combination of standard fencing and natural plants.
There are some species of trees and plants that lend themselves particularly well to the natural fence style. Trees like cypress and red cedar, as well as shrubs like lilac and arborvitae, all get tall and dense enough to create a buffer between you and your neighbor. Planted in a row or in an offset pattern, they will grow into a thick natural barrier that will envelop your backyard and keep your business private.
While one would think a tree or shrub would be low-maintenance, there are some things to be aware of. For one, you might not want to plant this privacy fence too close to your home. Roots can find themselves in the most precarious of places, so keeping them away from your foundation is probably best. Also, some of these trees do better in full sunlight, while others could use some shade. Consider where you’re building this natural fence before you decide what shrub or tree you’d like to use. Finally, if you have a heavy deer population, you may find that they like nibbling on the lower part of your fence.
4. Traditional Privacy Fence Ideas
Traditional style fencing isn’t relegated to just the wooden picket fences in the front yards of suburbia. There are a number of timeless styles and designs that work well to provide backyard privacy as well. If you’ve got a traditional style home and want to put up a fence that blends in with your design, this might be the category to focus on.
The trick here is to choose a fence style that fits your yard. If you’ve got some rolling hills in your backyard, it would make sense that you’d choose a fence with round curves to mimic the slopes. You could use an arched fence or scalloped fence design, as they both maintain smooth, consistent curves. While you certainly can build them yourself, it might save time to purchase these in panels.
For flatter backyards, squared panels might look the best. They maintain a flat, parallel top rail, but you can also climb small slopes by tiering or racking the panel, whichever you feel looks the nicest. These are also easiest to install if purchase in pre-built panels, but you could save money by building these fences board-by-board.
5. Contemporary Privacy Fence Ideas
Some backyard designs require a different style of fencing to look whole and complete. A home with a backyard full of modern touches would look strange with a white picket fence wrapped around it. That home would be better served by using a contemporary style of fence. Contemporary fences can be made from a number of materials and come in many different styles, but popular choices are metal-woven fences, as well as horizontal wood board-on-board styles.
The great thing about a contemporary fence style is that it doesn’t necessarily have to fit in with everything else in the yard. It just has to fit the style. These fences can be nearly any color or material. In the images below, you’ll see a copper-look woven privacy fence that creates an awesome look. Just as nice as that fence looks in that space, a horizontal plank fence would work there as well. The contemporary style, which is seemingly strict in certain areas, allows for a bit of fun elsewhere.
If you’re going out on a limb and trying something different, there are a few things to be aware of. If your neighbor can see the fence, the style might not be their cup of tea. In the spirit of being a good neighbor, you two should work on an option that works for both of you. Also, when it comes time to sell your house, any non-traditional touch could be a point of contention for a potential buyer. That being said, if this is your forever home or your neighbor is unaffected by your fence choice, the sky is the limit.
6. Gabion and Masonry Privacy Fence Ideas
If you prefer the look of stone over PVC, metal, or wood, you should consider building a stone or masonry wall to help gain some privacy. These walls can be large, mortared stacked-stone walls that are meticulously laid out, or you can try a less traditional Gabion wall, built with large rocks inside of metal frames.
Gabion walls are a simple but highly effective solution when it comes to privacy walls. They can be built almost anywhere that’s relatively level, and they’re a pretty affordable option. Gabion walls are metal-framed baskets filled with large stones. They don’t require foundations and are very stable if built correctly. They work well as a stand-alone structure, or they can be used in conjunction with standard fence materials to create a dual-textured look.
Stacked stone, brick, and block walls are also good options for building truly private fences. Not only will these materials block out on-lookers’ views, but they’ll also block much of the sound transfer from the neighbor’s house to yours and vice versa. These structures are more expensive to build and do require some serious knowledge or a contractor, but the end result will be a very secluded space for you to kick back in.
Have a look at this video that explains and shows how to build a large Gabion retaining wall:
7. Vinyl Privacy Fence Ideas
For the past couple of decades, vinyl and PVC products have taken the home improvement world by storm. Vinyl fencing panels have become a particularly attractive option, as they require very little maintenance and are light enough to be installed without help. Vinyl fencing panels have also come down considerably in pricing, making them a viable option for homeowners on a budget.
There are quite a few choices when it comes to vinyl privacy fences. Your local home center should have a large selection of products on hand, as well as a few catalogs from manufacturers that they can order from. The variety available makes it easy to find a vinyl fence that matches your backyard’s style and design, while also providing plenty of privacy. These fences typically come in panels, like one fence from Lowe’s, to make the installation fast and straightforward.
There are a few things you should be aware of before you order all your fence panels. PVC and vinyl can become very brittle in the cold, so a winter install should be considered a no-go for all but the warmest climates. You should also be aware that in that cold weather, any heavy impacts from dogs or playing children could lead to some damage as well. These panels aren’t very easy to fix either, so if this is a factor for you, you’ll want to look elsewhere.
8. Privacy Fence Gate Ideas
There is a lot to be said about gates. They are ultimately the most important part of a fence project. They need to be well-designed, well-planned for, and finely executed. If not handled properly, gates just become flimsy eye-sores that compromise the integrity of the fences they’re meant to secure. When built correctly, they are strong and stable, and also a pleasure to use.
While not all your fence posts need to be set in concrete, you’d be doing yourself a disservice by not cementing your gate posts in the ground. Keep in mind that these fence posts will experience pressure the entire time that the gate is open by carrying the weight of the door. This can easily loosen a fence post that’s only been set in the ground, regardless of the depth it was dug to.
Now that we have structure out of the way, you need to consider what you’d like your gate to look like. Some homeowners choose to have their gate blend in with the rest of the field of fencing, while others prefer that their gate stand out. The previous images have some awesome examples of how to build a highly-functional, good-looking gate that will last as long as your fence is standing.
Privacy Fence FAQs
Can a privacy fence add value to my home?
Depending on the type of fence and material used, the answer is yes, you may fetch a higher price at the time of sale. However, you may not recoup your entire investment. What you will benefit from is that your house will spend less time on the market, as buyers find private backyards more desirable and will be keen to make a deal. That could save you interest on mortgage payments.
How long can a wood fence be expected to last?
A western red cedar fence can last up to 30 years with proper maintenance. Species like hemlock will only last 10 to 15 years. A pressure treated fence panel can last as long as 30 years, but 15 is more likely. All this depends on how well the wood is maintained and the quality of the products used.
Top 29 Best Watches Under $500 For Men
With cellphones so ubiquitous, your watch choice can be less about telling time and more about personal style. However, a watch is not ‘just’ a watch. For example, the vast majority are made for right-handed people, but a select few cater to the lefties among us. There is a wide range in functionality and size.
The wristwatch is also one of the few socially acceptable accessories for men, so why not have a small selection? If you’re not cashing a CEO’s paycheck just yet, here are the top 28 most handsome watches for men that retail for under $500.
Got a bigger budget? Then check out our guide to the best men’s watches under $1000 instead.
Top 29 Best Watches Under $500 For Men
1. Tommy Hilfiger Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
If you like the feel of a pliable, non-metal band but aren’t comfortable with genuine leather, this watch comes equipped with a handsome synthetic band. At 46mm in diameter, this watch is perfect for men of smaller stature, as it will not overpower your hand or make it look like you’re wearing your father’s watch. With bold Arabic numerals, a stainless steel case, and classic styling, this watch is an outstanding choice for an everyday watch and the man on a budget.
2. Nordgreen Pioneer – Black Dial
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Not everyone has an endless amount of cash to drop on a luxury timepiece. If you’re money-conscious but want something high-end, then why not consider the Nordgreen Pioneer.
An inspired take on a classic Chronograph, Nordgreen celebrates the Danish with what they call a timepiece “that captures the sustainable future.” Available in various dial colors from blue, black, and white. There’s even the choice of three case colors – gunmetal, silver, and rose gold. A perfect addition to the collection of any watch enthusiast.
3. Fossil Grant Brown Leather WatchCheck Price
This lovely offering by Fossil features slim Roman numeral hour markers and delicate cut-out hands. The casing is stainless steel and is water-resistant to 165 feet, making it a great dive watch. The band is made of supple, soft calfskin leather and uses a buckle closure.
Of course, this timepiece also comes with the generous 11-year warranty and it’s own fun tin. This watch oozes class and is great for nearly every occasion in your life.
4. Citizen Sport Stainless Steel Men’s Watch With Brown Leather Band
If you don’t want to deal with changing out a battery in a digital watch, this watch is powered by either natural or indoor lighting. The mineral crystal face and stainless steel case make this watch water-resistant to 330 feet, making it a great choice for swimmers and snorkelers.
Handsome and utilitarian, this is a great watch for everyday wear. It’s one of the best watches for men who are always on the go.
5. Fossil Men’s Machine Chronograph Silicone Watch
This watch was designed with the active man in mind. The knurled silicone band stands up to sweat and oils without issue, and the timepiece itself is water-resistant to 165 feet.
The patterned bezel and quality craftsmanship of the black dial is excellent, as is to be expected from a Fossil watch. It even comes in the iconic and collectible tin!
6. Citizen Men’s Eco-Drive Watch
This men’s watch features Japanese quartz movement that charges itself indoors or out when exposed to light, making it a great choice for those who don’t want to change out the battery too often. The stitched canvas strap is soft against your skin and will wick away moisture, while the mineral crystal face stands up to the rigors of your everyday life.
Water-resistant to 330 feet, this dive watch is a classic and simple design you’ll be proud of for years to come.
7. Invicta Pro Diver Chronograph Men’s Watch
Another gorgeous offering by Invicta, this watch features a bold design with a slightly nautical feel to it. It will look at home whether you’re wearing a business suit or are going for a dive of less than 660 feet. This piece is also covered by a one-year warranty as a matter of course. The luminosity feature and magnified date window make it a great choice if you work or play in low light.
If you want something that looks like a Tag Heuer but without the luxury watch brand price tag, this is a good option!
8. Casio Edifice Multi-Function Men’s Watch
This watch has three sub-dials for 12 hour, 60 minute and 60-second displays, in addition to the standard time. It also features a fold-over, push-down clasp on the stainless strap, keeping it secure throughout your activities. If you’re looking for a classy timepiece that shrieks sophistication, this is a great choice.
9. Fossil Machine Three Hand Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
This quality watch is a chameleon piece. It looks at home as a dress watch riding below the cuff of your best suit, and it also looks great paired with jeans and a t-shirt. Backed by Fossil’s 11-year warranty as a matter of course and beautifully crafted, this smoke-colored piece is guaranteed to become the go-to accessory for nearly every occasion.
10. MVMT Watches Black Face Men’s Watch
If you like the look of a simple watch, this minimalist offering from MVMT is right up your alley. With just a plain black face, tick marks to denote the hours and a single date window, there is nothing overdone or extravagant about this design. The is understated and suited to the simple design. It’s definitely a classy, low-key piece for the budget-conscious.
11. Timex Weekender Watch
If you’re looking for a fun watch to pair with casual outfits, this is a great option. The band is blue and yellow woven nylon, and the face features both civilian and military timekeeping. An Indiglo night light is also included. This watch is water-resistant to 99 feet, meaning it can withstand splashes of water or exposure to rain but you won’t want to submerge it.
12. PUMA Ultrasize Black Sport Men’s Watch
Boasting a 50mm diameter, this piece is perfect for the large-framed man or one who likes to wear his accessories oversized. A true fashion statement, this sports watch comes in eight different colors schemes to match your favorite hues.
Do be aware, however, that the dial knob is configure for left-handed men!
13. Timex Easy Reader Men’s Watch
Another dress watch designed with the older gentleman in mind, this watch features a white dial with generously sized numerals that do not appear comical to the casual observer.
It’s also an excellent choice if you take your contacts out at night and still want to be able to check the time. With classic lines and a simple white face, the watch would not be out of place at any casual gathering. It comes with Timex’s one-year warranty at no additional charge.
14. Fossil Nate Men’s Chronograph Watch
For men who like a more gritty, industrial feel to their accessories, this Fossil watch is right on point. The bezel is gear-edged and the face is utilitarian black and gray. Water-resistant to 165 feet, this watch is a great choice if you like your adornments to be understated yet add visual interest.
It’s definitely a stand-out piece, for those who would take notice!
15. Timex Expedition Field Chronograph Men’s Watch
Featuring an indigo night light, tachymeter, a date window and a buckle closure, this watch is perfect for men who like to work or play outdoors. It is also water-resistant to 330 feet, making it a great choice for snorkeling or swimming.
You won’t want to wear it for diving, however. With classic, black styling and a genuine crystal face, this is a timepiece that will stand the test of time in both form and function.
16. Seiko 5 Automatic Stainless Steel Men’s Watch
This Seiko automatic watch has all the bells and whistles you need, but presents it all in a plain and strikingly attractive manner. It features a date window in either English or Spanish, sword-shaped hands, a sweeping second hand and a mineral dial window. This is a great option for the man on the go. The canvas strap can be removed and hand-washed if sweat or other odors become an issue.
This watch is not water-resistant, so you’ll only want to wear it when you won’t be popping by the pool for a swim!
17. Invicta Pro Diver Collection Silver-Tone Men’s Watch
For those who prefer an all-metal timepiece, the stainless steel Invicta fits the bill nicely. It has a similar aesthetic to a Tag Heuer watch, but at a more affordable price. Equipped with a unilateral bezel and removable links, the band can be customized to fit your wrist perfectly. The face is flame fusion crystal and features a magnifier to highlight the date window.
It’s also water-resistant to 660 feet. If you’re looking for a gorgeous watch that stands up to an active lifestyle, this is an excellent choice.
18. Seiko Men’s Adventure-Solar Classic Casual Watch
This Seiko watch derives its power from either natural or indoor light and can withstand water depths of up to 330 feet. The supple brown leather strap and timeless brushed steel give this piece an attractive look, and the alarm chronograph is easy to set.
If you’re looking for a watch that can serve as a backup for your wake-up call while traveling, stand up to the elements and look awesome, this casual wrist watch is a winner.
19. Nautica Men’s Stainless Steel Watch with Blue Resin Band
Featuring a plethora of options and a smart, snappy style, this a great casual watch with a eye-catching blue dial. The hardy resin band is adjustable, and the face is protected by a mineral window. Whether for work or play, this bold blue design is handsome and substantial on the wrist. It comes with Nautica’s five-year warranty at no additional charge.
20. Citizen Sport Men’s Stainless Steel Watch with Black Leather Band
The black, red and white face of this piece eschews the traditional two-tone color scheme so often employed in other watches, and the contrasting stitching on the band adds creative flair. It comes backed by Citizen’s five-year warranty and will compliment any casual outfit.
21. Alessi Tic15 Analog Display Analog Quartz Black Men’s Watch
Another not-quite-round offering on our list, the curved square casing of this piece gives it instant visual appeal. Sleek and clean, this unfussy design will be a compliment to almost any occasion. It has quartz movement and is water-resistant to 99 feet, making it a great choice for everyday wear.
22. Invicta 1517 I Force Collection Watch
Another on our list designed for left-handed men, this watch is something special. Water-resistant to 330 feet and featuring oversize stenciled numbers and a sub dial, this watch is great for any casual outfit. The cloth band is extremely durable and stands up to dirt, sweat and grime.
If you lead an active lifestyle, this watch will be right at home in your collection.
23. TRIWA Blue Steel Nevil Canvas Watch
This watch comes in a whopping 14 color variations, all of them beautiful. You may decide to add more than one to your collection!
Designed in Sweden, this watch features Japanese quartz movement, a stainless steel casing and a strap made from Tärnsjö organic leather. TRIWA, which stands for Transforming the Industry of Watches, believes in the artistry of fine jewelry and it shows in their product.
24. Victorinox Swiss Army Alliance Watch
Another fine dress watch from the makers of the Swiss Army knife, this watch is emblazoned with the internally recognized cross and shield emblem. It has no sub-dials, tachymeter or other add-ons to detract from its simple and appealing style.
This watch will be at home with all but the most formal of outfits and carries a two-year warranty.
25. Ingersoll Automatic Stainless Steel Bull Run Watch
Again, Ingersoll remakes the classics and brings them into the present day. With a highly polished stainless steel casing, two sub-dials, a date aperture and arrow-shaped hands, this quartz watch is beautiful.
The band features contrasting stitching on the fine-grain leather, adding depth and detail to the workmanship. This watch will compliment any casual occasion and can be relied upon for years to come.
26. Tissot Quickster Chronograph Black Leather Men’s Watch
Made with scratch-resistant sapphire crystal and Swiss automatic movement, this watch is a smart and utilitarian choice. If you’re looking for a solid Swiss watch that isn’t flashy, this is an excellent option. It’s also guaranteed for two years.
27. Seiko Sport Solar Men’s Beige Watch
Are you getting tired of squinting down at your watch or holding it closer and closer to your face? Don’t worry, we all get a bit nearsighted with age, especially over the age of 40.
If you’re not quite ready for reading glasses or a comically huge watch, this is a great choice from Seiko. The numerals, indices and luminous hands stand out in stark white against a black background, and the numerals are generous in size. It’s a perfect casual watch for the older gentleman.
28. Seiko Men’s 5 Watch Blue Canvas Band
This simple and affordable watch has a clean, crisp aesthetic to it and doesn’t bog down its design with a ton of bells and whistles. It’s time and date, end of.
If you want a watch for casual wear, this Seiko is a shoo-in. The band is forgiving and comfortable against your wrist, and it’s blue color will likely compliment your existing wardrobe. The price is also extremely affordable.
29. Tommy Hilfiger Men’s Stainless Steel Watch With Brown Leather Band
Featuring the Hilfiger logo at the three o’clock position, this wrist watch is a statement piece. It is a bright, shiny stainless steel work of art that you’ll be proud to wear at all but the most stuffy of workplaces. The calfskin leather band uses a buckle closure and the date window is beside the logo at three o’clock.
If you’re a fan of Tommy clothing, cologne or luggage, you can complete your look with this stunning accessory.