How to Fence a Yard on an Extreme Budget

If you wait until you have the money to make home improvements, it seems the only thing that gets accomplished is adding more to the "to-do" list.
Keep animals out of your garden by building an inexpensive fence.Keep animals out of your garden by building an inexpensive fence.
When budget doesn't allow, sometimes children or pets make waiting for a fence virtually impossible. If your need for a fence is immediate, build a temporary fence from inexpensive materials until budget permits otherwise. Alternatively, there are other ways to build a fence without breaking the bank.

Step 1

Visit lumber yards, liquidators and home improvement centers and ask if they have any discounted lumber. Sometimes wood used for fencing has flaws that won’t affect its use but because paying customers prefer unblemished pieces, the wood ends up in a discount bin.

Step 2

Check Craigslist and your local paper often to see if anyone is replacing present fencing with new fencing. In such cases, you can get metal, vinyl or other fencing materials for next to nothing as long as you can supply the labor.

Step 3

Call nonprofit and second-hand stores to see if they have any donated fencing on hand. Habitat for Humanity (, for instance, stocks a large amount of building and home improvement materials. You may not find enough fencing to do your entire yard, but if you are using common fencing supplies like chain link, you can pick up much of what you need for a fraction of the cost. When you purchase your supplies at a nonprofit home center, the money you use to purchase your supplies helps those in need.

Step 4

Neighbors often share the cost and labor of building a fence.

Ask your immediate neighbors to pitch in. If your new fence is going to benefit your neighbors, ask if they are willing to contribute half the cost and labor for the portion that borders their property.

Step 5

Consider building a partial fence, if the need is due to privacy issues. As long as your neighbors aren’t higher than you are, a 6-foot high partial section of fence will give you and your family privacy without costing a fortune.

Step 6

Visit a home improvement center for temporary fencing supplies or if the fence is to protect your garden from wild animals. Not only do most home centers stock inexpensive chicken wire and netting, but most have experts on hand that can tell you what you will need and how to complete your project.

Things You Will Need

  • Second-hand fencing materials
  • Chicken wire or mesh fencing
  • Fencing materials from nonprofit store


  • Before building your fence, check zoning codes as well as any homeowners associations in your neighborhood. That way you can ensure fences don’t have any restrictions, such as fencing material, height or color limitations.

About the Author

Adrienne Davis lives in the Hudson Valley and has been a freelance writer and blogger since 2009. Her work regularly appears in various online publications and blogs. Davis' writing expertise comes from a real estate and professional home-staging background and includes design and decoration as well as social planning. She studied radiology at Fanshawe College.