Let’s talk about how to achieve perimeter perfection. The perimeter of your home is the boundary of your land; it’s the point at which your land transitions to someone else’s property, or into public ownership. It’s fair to say that, for most homeowners, the perimeter receives relatively little attention–but this could be an oversight.
The perimeter is, after all, your first line of defense. It also marks the boundaries of your home; a theoretical line in the sand that contains the people and the property that you care about. By ensuring your perimeter is as much a practical element of your property as it is theoretical, you can achieve optimal results in home security and safeguarding.
If you have never thought about your perimeter in particular detail before, you’re far from alone. So, we’ve put together the following tips for those seeking to investigate and improve this important area of their property.
Perimeter Perfection: Tips on setting boundaries
Here are some first steps to take in securing your yard.
Define the perimeter
If someone asked you to take chalk and mark out exactly when your land begins and where it ends, could you do it?
For most of us, the answer is a clear “no”. Most homeowners tend to exist in a state of sort of. They know roughly where their land begins, but they couldn’t place a direct transitional point for each area. For most of us, this is more than fine. The issue only tends to become problematic if one of your neighbors disputes the boundaries, after all.
However, if you’re looking to define and improve your perimeter, it’s important to take the time to learn exactly where it is. This may mean consulting land records and maps to decide exactly where your property begins. When you have done this, mark out the area with a peg line wherever possible.
Assess your existing perimeter
Even if you have never thought about your perimeter before, you’ll almost certainly find that it is already rather defined. Trees, roads, and fences are all commonly used to mark boundary lines, so you should be able to see a rough outline.
Use the existing markers, and the peg lines you have placed everywhere else, to assess your existing perimeter. Your two main concerns should be:
- Definition. How defined is the perimeter? If you have had to use a huge amount of peg lines rather than relying on existing trees and fences, then definition may be an issue.
- Security. Could someone walk across your perimeter at any point? Or would they encounter an obstacle, such as a fence, a tree, or a building?
Creating your physical barrier
The ideal perimeter is defined and secure. If you’re looking to increase your home security, then providing some form of a barrier around your perimeter is the best choice.
There are numerous options to consider when seeking to achieve this goal:
- Fencing is perhaps the most obvious option and is definitely worth doing. A good fence is around six feet tall and should be secured with robust sucker rods from Varner and similar manufacturers.
- The most common alternative to a fence is to use a hedge of some sort, though these do have their downsides. The most obvious obstacle being the time a hedge takes to grow. If you’re looking to create a hedge barrier as quickly as possible, it’s worth investigating fast-growing hedge plants to overcome this issue. Try using temporary measures in the meantime.
- You can also use buildings, such as sheds, to reinforce your perimeter if you prefer. Just be careful to ensure you close all gaps around the building; you’re looking to achieve a seamless, uninterrupted barrier. Be aware of the right of way laws to ensure you don’t encroach on the right of ways. Otherwise, you’ll be fined and/or forced to move your building.
- You could also look to construct a wall, though it is worth noting that this is a particularly laborious choice – you can construct a wall yourself, but it’s a long, time-consuming, and often financially demanding pursuit. Fencing is usually the preferred option, as it offers the same benefits for far lower cost, but if you’d prefer a wall, then this should work well to achieve the same aims.
- If you have pets, you may also want to look into invisible fencing. While this form of fencing has its pros and cons, it can be a suitable choice if you find your pets – and particularly your dog – is prone to digging beneath the fence.
A note on trees:
You may be wondering why trees have not been used on this list. While trees can be used as part of a barrier, they are rarely a barrier in and of themselves due to spacing requirements. However, it’s well worth planting trees to enhance the protections above, both for the extra privacy and for the drought and flood prevention benefits trees offer.
Creating your security barrier
The physical barriers around your property are just the first phase of a truly robust perimeter. The second element is surveillance of your perimeter, the vast majority of which can be provided by home security systems.
There is a variety of home security options to consider, with the following particularly beneficial:
- If you live on a large plot, the ability to monitor your perimeter remotely is incredibly valuable. You could look for a CCTV-style system that is trained on the most inaccessible points, so you can just quickly glance at the camera to check all is well without having to trek to the actual perimeter itself.
- Cameras are also beneficial for points of potential weakness, such as gaps around buildings or young hedges that have not yet reached their ideal height.
- Security lighting is also a worthwhile investment regardless of the size of your property. Ideally, you want anyone stepping over your perimeter to immediately be illuminated, with motion sensor lighting the best option for achieving this.
The bottom line on securing your home’s perimeter
The integrity of your land’s perimeter is arguably the most critical element of your home security. By exploring the ideas presented above, you should be able to create a safe, secure perimeter that is able to offer optimal protection to your land, your property, and most importantly for your family.