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Choosing the Right Commercial Fence: Essential Considerations for Businesses & Property Managers

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Selecting the right commercial fence is a crucial decision, requiring a balance of safety, style, and budget. An effective fence enhances property appeal while controlling access. Key considerations include purpose, required security level, design cohesion, future needs, and maintenance implications. 

A well-chosen fence contributes to your business’s image and delivers on functional requirements. Employ this guide as a starting point for deliberating the optimal fencing solution that meets your business’s functional and aesthetic demands.

Key Takeaways

  • Consider security, privacy, budget, and aesthetics when selecting a commercial fence.
  • The material and design should align with your property’s style and functional needs.
  • Carefully evaluate future scalability, maintenance, and costs during the selection process.

Things to Consider When Selecting a Commercial Fence

It may sound like a no-brainer but the start of your decision-making process should center on the principal function of the fence:

Primary Functions:

  • Security – Deterring intruders and protecting assets. Features like height and robust materials enhance security.
  • Access Control – Managing access for personnel and vehicles. Gates, keypads and other entry systems facilitate access control.
  • Aesthetics – Complementing your property’s style and image. Material choice and design features contribute to curb appeal.
  • Privacy: Determine the level of privacy required. Opaque materials can shield sensitive areas from public view.

Material Selection: Consider longevity, weather resistance, and upkeep requirements for different materials. 

Material Durability Maintenance
Steel High Low
Aluminum High Low
Vinyl Moderate Low
Wood Low High


Budgeting For A Commercial Fence

If you call in a contractor to provide a quote, their first question will probably be about your budget. Honestly, it’s a fair question. Why would they discuss materials that you can’t afford to purchase? When choosing a commercial fence, it’s crucial to start by determining your budget. However, if you’re new to buying fencing, you may not know how much you should allocate for your budget.

Here’s a breakdown of fence costs per linear foot, including installation:

Material: Low-end: Mid-range: High-end:
Vinyl: $15 – $25 $30 – $45 $50 – $65
Steel: $20 – $35 $40 – $60 $70 – $90
Aluminum: $25 – $40 $45 – $65 $75 – $100
Composite: $30 – $50 $55 – $75 $80 – $120

Fence costs can vary widely based on material, design, and size. Accurately planning your budget means considering both initial installation costs and long-term maintenance expenses.

  • Initial Costs:
    • Materials: Chain link, wrought iron, and vinyl are common with varying prices.
    • Labor: Installation prices differ, often calculated per linear foot.
    • Permits: Check for local regulations that might incur additional costs.
  • Maintenance: Different materials require different levels of upkeep.
    • Wood may need regular staining or painting.
    • Metal might need treatment for rust prevention – this is something our products always include.
    • Vinyl is low maintenance but may have a higher upfront cost.

Before you make any commitments, get multiple quotes from different vendors to compare prices. Remember to include in your budget potential repairs or upgrades you might need in the future.  By focusing on the total lifetime cost of ownership rather than just the purchase price, you can make a smart investment in your property while staying financially responsible.

Security Needs Of Your Fence: Risk Assessment 

When selecting a commercial fence, it is imperative to assess the security risks associated with your business location. Conduct a thorough risk assessment to understand the potential threats. Begin by evaluating the local crime rates; this data can inform the level of security required for your fence.

  • If prevailing crime rates are high, consider a more private and secure fencing option.
  • Conversely, in areas with lower crime concerns, a less fortified structure may suffice.

Fence security features to consider based on threat levels:

  • Height: Taller fences offer more deterrence but ensure compliance with local zoning regulations.
  • Material: Durable materials like steel resist tampering and provide better protection.
  • Visibility: Depending on the need for surveillance, opt for a design that either allows visibility or provides privacy.

Remember, the goal is to match the fence security to the specific needs of your business environment. Analyze the vicinity for any additional threats that may be specific to your location or industry.

Key steps for risk assessment:

  1. Gather crime rate statistics for your region.
  2. Evaluate any past security incidents relevant to your business.
  3. Consider both the likelihood and potential impact of different threat scenarios.
  4. Prioritize security measures that address the most critical risks.

By taking these steps, you’ll be able to determine the right balance between safety and practicality for your fencing needs. Your fence should not only deter or delay potential threats but also align with your overall security strategy.

Privacy Considerations

When selecting a commercial fence, it’s important to prioritize privacy. This directly impacts not only how your business is perceived but also the comfort of clients and employees who spend time on the property. Here are key points to consider:

Material Selection:

  • Solid materials such as wood or vinyl obstruct views and offer a high level of privacy.
  • Metal panels with minimal gaps can also deter visual access without compromising on design.

Height of the Fence:

  • Generally, a height of at least 6 to 8 feet is recommended to prevent onlookers from peering into the property.

Design Features:

  • Consider adding lattice or frosted glass inserts to increase privacy without sacrificing aesthetics.
  • Privacy slats can be inserted into chain link fences for a cost-effective solution.

Regulations and Compliance:

  • Verify local zoning laws to confirm that your chosen fence height and material comply with municipal guidelines.
  • Obtain necessary permits before installation to avoid future legal complications.

Perimeter Dimensions and Scalability

Evaluate property size, shape, and access requirements. Carefully consider if your business may expand in the future or require changes to entry points. Select a commercial fencing solution that is adaptable and scalable to accommodate potential growth without requiring full replacement down the road. Seek out modular or customized systems that allow for:

  • Adding additional fence length or height
  • Altering or adding access gates as needs evolve
  • Incorporating updated security features
  • Cost-effectively expanding the enclosed area

Choosing a scalable fencing system upfront will provide long-term flexibility and prevent costly replacement if your security needs or footprint change. Discuss scalability options with fencing contractors to determine the best solution for your property’s current and future dimensions.

How a Commercial Fence Affects Style & Curb Appeal

Your fence conveys your brand image and style to clients. Carefully consider:

  • Security vs. Approachability: A tall or robust fence suggests heightened security, which some businesses require. A lower, decorative fence can feel more welcoming while still defining the property line.
  • Elegance and Tradition: For upscale properties desiring a prestigious look, materials like wrought iron or finely crafted wood can enhance the elegant aesthetic.
  • Modern Appeal: If your business thrives on a contemporary image, consider fences with clean lines and industrial materials that reflect modern architecture.
  • Complements Surrounding Style:
    • Neighborhood Integration: Avoid clashing with the area’s architectural style.
    • Architectural Harmony: The fence should harmonize with your exterior design.

The fence style sends a message about the business to visitors and passersby. The optimal style alignment depends on the impression the business wants to convey. Here is a thorough table comparing common commercial fence styles and what they communicate about a business:

Fence Style Description Communicates Ideal For
Wrought Iron Intricate black metal with elegant scrollwork and finials Luxury, sophistication, tradition Upscale hotels, restaurants, boutiques
Simulated Wrought Iron Molded composite or aluminum mimicking real wrought iron Classic style on a budget Budget-conscious properties seeking an elegant look
Steel Ornamental Decorative steel pickets, panels, and posts Security with architectural appeal Businesses needing security with aesthetics like offices, warehouses
Aluminum Ornamental lightweight aluminum in modern designs like railings Contemporary, cutting-edge Tech companies, modern retail spaces, restaurants
Vinyl Picket PVC plastic pickets resembling wood Approachable and affordable, Down-to-earth, countryside feel Rural businesses like farms, and cottage inns. Budget-friendly retail shops, apartment complexes
Vinyl Post & Rail PVC fence panels Clean, contemporary Apartment complexes, hotels, dog parks
Composite Stone  / Wood Molded composite wall panels imitating stacked stone or wood paneling Rustic, organic, upscale Restaurants, wineries, health resorts, luxury properties needing privacy
Brick & Wrought Iron Combo Brick columns with wrought iron infill Blend of tradition and security Professional office parks, gated communities

Additional Considerations:

When choosing the right commercial fence for your property, there are several factors to consider beyond the basics of security, privacy, and aesthetics. These additional considerations can significantly affect your satisfaction with the fencing solution you select.

  • Regulations and Codes: Adhere to local zoning laws and building codes, which may influence height restrictions, materials, and fence placement.
  • Climate and Environment: Your region’s weather patterns play a crucial role in material selection. If you live in an area with harsh weather, consider fencing materials that are resistant to the elements.
  • Longevity and Maintenance: Think about the long-term maintenance requirements of different materials. While some may have higher upfront costs, they could offer savings over time with fewer repairs or replacements needed.
  • Integration with Landscaping: Ensure the fence design complements your existing landscape. The right aesthetic cohesion can enhance your property’s overall appearance.
  • Access Requirements: Consider the need for gates or other access control systems for vehicles and pedestrians. You’ll want to ensure that the access points are secure, yet convenient for authorized users.
  • Acoustic Privacy: If your business is located in a noisy area, opt for noise-reducing materials like mass-loaded vinyl to buffer external sound.

Italicize any terms or phrases that are of key importance or which need to be defined for readers who may be unfamiliar with them. Remember to weigh these additional considerations carefully as they can influence the effectiveness and ongoing costs associated with your commercial fencing solution.

Maintenance Considerations For Commercial Fencing

When selecting a commercial fence, it is essential to consider long-term maintenance to ensure it remains both functional and visually appealing. Material choice significantly impacts the amount of upkeep required. For example, materials like vinyl, aluminum, and steel are known for their durability and minimal maintenance needs. These materials do not succumb to rust or corrosion, allowing you to enjoy a clean and professional look with less effort.

On the other hand, less durable materials might be initially cheaper but could lead to increased costs over time due to repairs, repainting, or even premature replacement. Here are some key maintenance aspects to consider:

  • Cleaning: Materials like vinyl are remarkably easy to clean, often requiring only soap and water to remove dirt and grime.
  • Inspecting: Regular inspections can help identify potential issues early, regardless of material. Check for signs of wear such as cracks, loose posts, or any damage.
  • Repairing: Consider the ease of repairing the chosen material. For instance, damage to a vinyl fence may be as simple as replacing a panel, whereas other materials might require more extensive work.

Use this table to guide your material selection based on maintenance levels:

Material Maintenance Required Expected Lifespan
Vinyl Low Long
Aluminum Low Long
Steel Low-Medium Long
Wood High Variable

By investing in a low-maintenance but high-quality material, you ensure your commercial property is encircled by a fence that not only looks professional but also stands the test of time with minimal additional expense.

What Are The Best Fencing Options For Commercial Properties?

Below is a comparison of popular fencing materials to help guide your decision.

Material Cost Durability Security Maintenance
Vinyl Affordable Moderate Low Low
Aluminum Moderate High Moderate Low
Steel Higher Very High High Moderate to Low
Composite Higher High Moderate Low
  • Vinyl fencing is cost-effective and offers a variety of styles with minimal maintenance. However, it may not provide the strong security some commercial properties require.
  • Aluminum fencing is versatile and provides a modern look with low maintenance. While it offers moderate security, brands like Elite Ornamental Aluminum Fencing come in a spectrum of colors to match your aesthetic needs.
  • For heightened security, steel fences are superior due to their welded construction and the strength of the material. They are commonly available in standard colors such as black and bronze. If you’re dealing with security concerns or need to contain adventurous individuals or animals, steel is a robust option.
  • Lastly, composite materials strike a balance, offering high durability with low maintenance needs and a range of design options. While the initial cost might be higher, composite fencing can be a worthwhile investment in the long term.

Vinyl Fencing Options

A vinyl fence that Maintenance-Free Outdoor Solutions installed at a Taco Bell in the St. Louis area

When selecting a fence for your property, especially if aesthetics play a significant role, consider the benefits of vinyl fencing. Vinyl offers a blend of durability and style, making it an appealing choice for enhancing your property’s visual appeal without compromising on longevity. Our vinyl fencing offers dependable performance at an economical price, with features you’d expect to find on higher-end fence products.

Styles and Colors

  • Picket: Ideal for cafes and patios, giving a classic look.
  • Privacy: Suitable for areas requiring solitude, like outdoor dining.


  • Low Maintenance: No need for painting or frequent repairs.
  • Variety: A range of colors to match your branding or landscape.
  • Durability: Resists weathering and fading over time.

Vinyl fences are particularly well-suited for establishments prioritizing curb appeal, such as apartment complexes, hotels, and restaurants. The extensive selection of designs can cater to various themes and concepts, from the traditional to the contemporary.

With their cost-effectiveness, vinyl fences are a practical option for businesses looking for a long-term investment. The material’s resistance to impacts paired with UV protection ensures that your investment is safeguarded against common environmental stressors. As such, the ongoing expenses associated with vinyl fencing are minimal, as it stands the test of time with little maintenance required.

Your choice of a vinyl fence is not just an immediate enhancement — it is an investment in the sustained presentation of your commercial property.

Commercial Grade Aluminum Railing

Maintenance-Free Outdoor Solutions installed this commercial grade aluminum railing at Andy’s Frozen Custard in Ballwin, Missouri

When selecting a fencing solution for your business environment such as restaurants or office complexes, aluminum railings offer both elegance and strength. Our commercial grade aluminum fence and railings are ideal for restaurants, stores, and office complexes, as well as apartments and condominium complexes. Here are key features you should consider:

Dimensions & Build:

  • Rails: 1-1/8″ x 1-3/4″
  • Pickets: 3/4″ x 3/4″
  • Posts: 2″ x 2″ or 2-1/2″ x 2-1/2″

For more demanding settings, like industrial applications, there are sturdier options:

  • Rails: 1-5/8″ x 1-5/8″
  • Pickets: 1″ x 1″
  • Posts: Available in 2-1/2″ x 2-1/2″, 3″ x 3″, or 4″ x 4″

Aesthetics & Accessories: Your aluminum fencing can be personalized with a variety of decorative features:

  • Quad finials
  • Tri-finials
  • Butterfly scrolls
  • Decorative circles

To enhance the appearance, consider powder-coating options that match or contrast your existing finish, including a premium gold option.

Durability: Elite ornamental aluminum fences are treated with a “Super Durable” powder-coated finish, which provides a shield against harsh elements without the need for repainting or routine upkeep. See how aluminum compares to wrought iron in this post. 

Design Sophistication: Offering a sophisticated multi-level design and pressed spear tops, you can further tailor the look with a selection of accessories that reflect your style preference.

Economic Value: Investing in aluminum railings not only enhances your property’s visual appeal but also adds to its resale value. Moreover, these solutions often come with the added benefit of minimal maintenance costs, making them a financially savvy choice over time.

Commercial Grade and Industrial Grade Ornamental Steel Fencing

Industrial grade fencing installed by Maintenance-Free Outdoor Solutions is a great choice for securing industrial and commercial properties

When you’re in the market for both security and aesthetics for your property, consider ornamental steel fencing. This type of fencing gives you the classic appearance of wrought iron without the upkeep. It’s become a preferred material for securing commercial and industrial sites due to its durability and elegance.

  • Durability: Ornamental steel is well-suited to withstand various weather conditions, including resistance to rust and corrosion. This ensures a long-lasting barrier for your business.
  • Security: Offering the sturdiness required for high-security areas, it’s an ideal solution if your top priority is protection without compromising on looks.
  • Aesthetics: Adding a decorative touch, these fences enhance the visual appeal of your property, contributing positively to a company’s image. They are favored by a broad range of industries, from restaurants to larger enterprises.

Moreover, manufacturers like Ameristar have innovated with special maintenance-free coatings that defend against corrosion in almost any environment, effectively making these fences a one-time investment for terms as long as 20 years.

When selecting your ornamental steel fencing, consider factors such as:

  • The style of the fence, which should complement your property’s architecture.
  • The height and build of the fence, to ensure it meets your security requirements.
  • The color options available that match your corporate branding.

An ornamental steel fence is not only a functional asset but also communicates a sense of prestige and stability to your clients and visitors, making it an invaluable addition to your business or industrial property.

Simulated Stone Fencing

Most commercial fence companies don’t use simulated stone fencing, however, Maintenance-Free Outdoor Solutions does

When considering a stylish and durable fence option for your business, simulated stone fencing offers a captivating alternative to traditional materials. This is a popular choice for restaurants,  spas, health clubs, hotels, or any other business where peaceful surroundings are needed to help customers relax.

Crafted from high-density polyethylene, this fencing mimics the texture of genuine stone walls, providing an upscale look without the heavy cost.


  • Durability: Reinforced with galvanized steel, this robust material stands up to various weather conditions and daily stresses.
  • Aesthetics: The realistic stone appearance enhances the visual appeal of any property, contributing to a serene ambience essential for customer-focused establishments like restaurants and health clubs.
  • Privacy: Offering solid coverage, this fencing option ensures a private environment for your property, creating a sense of seclusion and security.
  • Sound Barrier: Its composition is highly effective at dampening noise, making it a perfect choice for creating a tranquil outdoor space.


  • Graffiti Resistant: The non-porous surface allows for easy cleaning, deterring vandalism.
  • Fade Resistant: The color is not merely surface deep—your fence will maintain its rich hue over time, resisting the fading effects of sunlight.

By choosing simulated stone fencing, you invest in long-term value and elegance, all while catering to your clientele’s comfort and securing your property with an eye-catching boundary that stands as a testament to both form and function.


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The Ultimate Guide to Fencing

Maintenance Free Outdoor Solutions has been in business for more than 20 years, and over that time we’ve been consistently rated as an A+ by the BBB. We provide commercial customers with free estimates after an extensive on-site visit to determine your needs. And we are dedicated to the highest levels of service, quality materials, and competitive prices.

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Tim Kelley

With over four decades in the St. Louis fencing industry, Tim Kelly leads Maintenance-Free Outdoor Solutions as its President. He is renowned for his commitment to quality, ethics, and community involvement.

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