The Cheapest Ways to Build a Privacy Fence

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A high-quality wooden privacy fence can be very expensive.

If your house is situated in close proximity to your neighbors, or if you simply want to define your property, a privacy fence is what you need. High-quality wood or laminate privacy fences can be very costly, but if you just want something that will get the job done, you can consider several projects that will cost a lot less. Use discarded or recycled materials to build your privacy fence without spending a lot of money.


Recycled Wood

Contact your local lumberyard or scan the classified ads for unwanted wood scraps and old fence posts. To construct a basic wooden privacy fence, all you need are some 4-by-4-inch wooden posts tall enough to sink several inches into the ground. Sink your posts at regular intervals, and use a nail gun to secure wood scraps, pieces of old fences or even wooden broom handles crossed in an X shape between the posts.

Glass Bottles

Contact your neighbors or your local recycling plant and begin collecting glass bottles. While it is possible to use bottles of all shapes and sizes, this project works best with bottles that have a uniform shape. Stack the bottles in the desired location for your privacy fence, and cement the rows together by applying a layer of mortar or quick-dry cement to the top of each row of bottles before stacking the next row on top. Get creative by making patterns using bottles with different colors of glass.


Chain link is one of the least expensive options in basic fencing -- you can purchase a roll of fencing for between $50 and $75. To turn your chain link fence into a privacy fence, plant climbing vines and creepers such as morning glory, Virginia creeper or clematis at the base of the fence. As the plants grow, they fill in the gaps in the chain link and provide you with an attractive, living privacy fence. You can also slide plastic strips diagonally through the chain links to make it a solid surface.

Plastic Milk Crates

Dairy suppliers use plastic milk crates to transport their goods, but you can use them to create a basic privacy fence in your back yard. Contact local dairy suppliers to see if they have any old or damaged crates they would be willing to give you, and keep an eye out at discount stores and garage sales. Stack the crates on top of each other, using a little quick-dry cement to secure them in place, in the desired location of your privacy fence. A milk-crate fence is affordable and durable, able to withstand the elements.



Katherine Barrington

Katherine Barrington has written on a variety of topics, from arts and crafts to pets, health and do-it-yourself projects. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English with a creative writing concentration from Marietta College.