Let’s Look at Fence Panel Installation Prices
This is how much a new fence will cost in 2023
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Earlier this month, I sourced prices from four local fence installers for replacing eight fence panels down the side of my house.
I’ll be doing the work myself as I have a long history in landscape gardening, but I was curious to see how much installers are currently charging in my area (Surrey). I know that the cost of fence panels has skyrocketed over the last few years and is double what they cost only five years ago, but I wasn’t sure what the going rate is for the installation.
I’m sure you’ll find the prices below insightful.
My project is straightforward, here are the details:
- 8 x fence panels (6ft high lap panels, nothing fancy)
- Timber gravel boards.
- 9 x timber posts.
- All fixings, concrete postfix etc included.
- Waste and old panels disposed of by the firm.
- The fence is in a straight line, and the ground doesn’t need excavating.
- VAT if charged.
These are the prices I was given:
|Business 1||£1060 (£132 per bay)|
|Business 2||£1300 (£162 per bay)|
|Business 3||£1520 (£190 per bay)|
|Business 4||£1920 (£240 per bay)|
A few things to note:
- The first firm I contacted was a smaller businesses (man and van type).
- The last business was an established landscape gardening firm with a dozen or so employees.
- I requested prices for their cheapest lap fence panels, secured to timber posts.
Let’s Take a Look at How Much The Fence Panels and Other Materials Cost
The cost of the panels, posts, concrete etc, will depend on their quality, and just from browsing online, I can see huge variations from supplier to supplier.
However, I know from experience that the cheapest panels aren’t always acceptable, as I’ve seen a few buckle and bend.
Below I’ve published prices that I sourced from several suppliers online, they reflect the going rate at the moment:
|1.8m fence panel (each)||£45 (budget lap panel)|
|Timber gravel boards (each)||£8|
|End caps (each)||£2|
|Total for 8 panels||£688 (£86 per bay)|
Summary – A Quick Look at How Much a New Fence Costs
The cost of the materials alone is around £86 per bay, and that’s for lap panels which aren’t fancy or premium.
The cost of the materials, installation, waste disposal etc, varies but was between £132 and £240 per bay.
Personally, I feel the most expensive company were chancing it as their price is high for what is a straightforward project.
The smaller business appears to be charging for the materials, his wages and a small amount to cover costs.
Based on this limited set of quotes, I think a reasonable price to pay per bay is around £140 – £160.
Here are eight caveats to consider:
- I’m based in Surrey; you could pay more/less depending on where you live.
- The economics of scale means that you’ll pay much more per bay if you only need one replaced rather than dozens, which could work out cheaper.
- Not all fence panels are equal; Wickes and B&Q charge around £35 per lap panel while most timber merchants charge around £45 for their standard lap panels.
- Close-boarded, featheredge, tongue and groove and decorative panels will be priced differently.
- I know from my own experience that if you need to replace a fence after a storm or high winds, then you may pay much more as the panels might be out of stock and the installers overwhelmed with work.
- I chose timber posts which cost more than concrete ones.
- Gravel boards add to the cost but also mean you’ll need a shorter and cheaper fence to maintain the 6ft height so the price often balances out.
- If your garden requires significant groundwork, such as lifting roots or tree stumps etc, then this will affect the cost.
What Our Fact-Checker Told Us:
Before publishing this price guide, I asked Paul Farley to research and fact-check the key points I’ve made.
Here’s what he had to say:
I found four fence installers online that published price lists. The cheapest claimed that they can install a new 6ft lap fence and take the waste away for £135 per bay. The other three installer prices I found online were published within the last two years and the prices varied between £140 and £150 per bay.
The last time I paid for a new fence was in 2019 and we paid £115 per bay but prices have risen significantly since then.
The Final Verdict on Fence Prices
If you’re looking for a ballpark price for a standard, straightforward fence installation with lap panels, expect to pay from £135 per bay, assuming you go with budget panels and a local man-and-van type tradesperson.
Go with a firm, and the price will likely rise above £150 per bay, possibly up to £200 per bay.
If the project is more complex or you choose decorative fence panels, the cost will rise accordingly.
The bottom line: As you can see from my independent research, you really need to get lots of quotes for comparison, and remember that the cheapest doesn’t always mean the best workmanship.
Get Your Custom Fence Panel Quote
I’ve teamed up with Bark, who can supply you with quotes from local, rated fence installers.
The service is free to use and the fence installers must pay a small fee to respond to your quote request, so you know they won’t waste your time.
Tap the button below and fill in the form with details of your fence project:
Fence Panel FAQs
When Were These Fence Prices Published?
I sourced prices from the four firms and checked prices online in February 2023.
Which Companies Supplied You With The Figures?
I chose four firms randomly from my area, two of which were smaller businesses and two which were more established and clearly had employees.
How Many Fence Panels Can Be Fitted in a Day?
I’ve worked with dozens of fencing installers over the years when I was a project manager and on a very good day, a team can fit up to 15 bays but the norm is usually around 8-12.
How long the project takes depends on:
- How much concrete needs to be dug up.
- The overall condition of the ground.
- Whether the fence is in one straight line or has lots of turns.
- Access restrictions etc.
- How many guys are working on the project (installing fence panels is much more difficult and slow when you’re on your own).
I’ve installed fence panels myself several times, but as it’s not something I did every day, I found it slow going, and there was no possibility of me installing 15 bays in one day.
Do I Need to Paint or Treat the Fence to Protect it?
There are two types of treated timber fencing – dip-treated and pressure treated.
Dip treated – the panels and posts are dipped in protective chemicals that soak the surface and protect from rot and fungus in the short term.
Pressure-treated – the panels are placed in a sealed chamber, and the pressure is increased to force the protective chemicals deep into the timber. Pressure-treated timber costs more but lasts much longer.
You can treat both types of timber with additional protective paints such as Cuprinol Ducksback, Ronseal’s One Coat and even oil-based dyes such as Creocote, an alternative to the once-popular Creosote.
The fence prices in my guide do not include the cost of paint treatments or paints.
What's Best: Concrete or Timber Posts?
Most people will agree that timber posts look better. They’re the same colour as the fence panels and can also be dyed or painted. They are, however, weaker and more likely to warp, rot or move in the wind.
Conrete posts are currently slightly cheaper than timber due to the increased cost of imported wood products.
Do consider that concrete posts don’t look as aesthetically pleasing but are stronger and don’t warp. The groove on the side of the post makes lifting the panel out easy – handy if you may require access or to change the panel at a later date.
What Are Gravel Boards?
Gravel boards are lengths of timber or concrete, of varying height, placed at the base of the fence panel to protect it from the moisture at ground level which could cause rot. They also raise the overall height of the fence. Do consider this when choosing a fence panel, as they also come in several heights.
In the UK, most fences are 6ft tall, so you may need to use slightly shorter panels to account for the height of the gravel board.
What Height Panels Are There?
Fence panels are manufactured in several heights from 0.9m to 1.82m.
Don’t forget, you can increase the height of the fence with gravel boards at the base and even further by fixing a trellis to the top.
How Long Does it Take to Install Fence Panels?
The time it takes to install fence panels depends on several factors, including how easy it is to access the garden, the ground conditions are also important.
For example, I’ve found it very difficult and slow going when digging post holes in gardens with lots of large tree roots or with plenty of concrete to break up and dispose of.
I know from my experience as a project manager that a team of two can install up to 15 bays in a day, assuming good ground conditions. The amount of time required can double with poor conditions or complex projects.
Are There Any Trade Associations Where I Can Find Reputable Installers?
You can Bark, and of course, there’s also Checkatrade, Which?, Trustmark and other associations.
There are several landscaping associations, but most landscapers should be able to install fencing, it’s bread and butter work for anyone in this trade.
What Type of Company Installs Fencing?
I’ve worked with firms that are specialist installers and they install fence panels and nothing else.
Landscape gardeners also carry out this work frequently as it falls within their remit.
Author: Daniel Woodley
In his spare time, Daniel enjoys gardening, hiking and scrambling. He frequently posts videos to his popular YouTube Channel and is well known in the hiking community.
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Daniel Woodley wrote this guide to the cost of a new fence.
Daniel is a former project manager who has worked on hundreds of landscaping and home improvement projects. Despite having over 18 years of experience in several trades and a good idea of how much projects like fencing cost, he thoroughly researched the topic.
The figures displayed on this page are based on quotes he was given from a limited number of fence installers. He also researched the cost of the materials by sourcing figures from online suppliers.
We also asked Paul Farley to review and fact-check the article before we published it.
Explore: Paul Farley’s profile.
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