How I Finally Added Some Much-Needed Privacy to My Exposed Backyard — Apartment Therapy Original Makeover


I live in a city, which means my backyard isn’t a quiet, outdoor oasis populated by trees and wildlife — where the only sound is the wind and maybe some crickets. Instead I’m surrounded by cell phone conversations, kids whooping it up while waiting for the school bus, and tons and tons of barking dogs. While I love living here, sometimes it would just be so nice to feel like I’m the only person in the world. When I recently did a whole backyard makeover, one of the major goals was creating sweet, blissful privacy.

This is what the fence looked like before. Technically, it belonged to the neighbors, but the landlord had no interest in spending money to replace it, so I reached out and offered to pay for a new one. He eagerly said yes, gave permission to use the existing mini concrete barrier wall as a base, and really didn’t care what it looked like in the end. Since the old fence was held up by wire in a couple of places, I think it’s safe to say this was a good deal on his end.

Before & After

I chose cedar because it’s extremely durable and naturally resists moisture, decay and insect damage. There’s no need to seal it, and it will last years longer than ordinary pressurized wood. Eventually, with age, it will darken into a gray-ish color, which should blend well with the rest of the deck and exterior walls.

I’m also happy to say that the fence was the tip of the iceberg and my outdoor space is completely different than it was before.

Fence Materials

You’ll have to measure your own fence to figure out what supplies are needed, but here’s what I used for my 33′ long, 6′ tall fence:

Fence Installation

Many thanks to River City Fence Co. for all their help with the fence. These guys were fast and did a great job!

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