I wanted to know the difference/impact having a natural barrier such as hedges (evergreen, holly, Yucca, etc...) or a privacy fence is one seen as more contemporary or less valuable. We are wanting to ensure our homes value and not do something that would negatively impact our resale.
Better or not it will get done!
Depends, advantages and disadvantages to both. Either can be removed, if one ever wants. One takes much longer to grow and establish, but trimming, watering, and other horticultural practices can make it more time consuming? Living fences can often grow taller (eventually) than 6 foot, but may also die back leaving a gap. Sometimes it is only full coverage for part of the year if deciduous.
Privacy fence (unless one uses solid stone/block) will last only as long as the posts last. (we replaced our wood posts with square steel posts several years ago, very costly but will never rot) It also has a limited height, as most neighborhoods will often allow only up to 6 foot ht, solid fencing. The privacy is immediate or as soon as you get it installed. It can tend to look weathered if a stain is not applied.
Like conrad mentioned, it really depends. In my own opinion, I would prefer a privacy fence for a few reasons, especially if you plan on selling your home.
If a home buyer has children, hedges are not going to keep them in the yard. They might not think a natural barrier is as safe as a fence.
Not only does a fence keep things in, it also keeps things out. Bushes or hedges won't keep critters (or people) from entering a yard.
Also think about pets, if you or a future buyer has a pet, a hedge fence isn't going to keep a dog contained in the yard.
You can always compromise and put hedges in front of a privacy fence to break up the look of it. We built an 8' privacy fence to block out our annoying neighbors and I've since been adding small trees and bushes in front of it so it's not such a massive structure.
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