Cost to Build a Rail Fence

Cost to Build a Rail Fence

A fence contractor charges $1,075 to build a split rail fence but by building it yourself for $680 you save 36 percent. Adjust the home improvement and repair cost with your ZIP Code.

National Average Improvement and Repair Cost
Hours Pro 8.3 Diy 21.5
Money Pro $1075 Diy $680
Click to Adjust Cost to Your ZIP Code.
HA Get help
DIY Word of the Day
Monochromatic – a color scheme limited to one color and its various tones
Related Job Costs: Walls/Wallcoverings
Related Crossword Puzzle: Decorator for a Day
 Cost to Build a Rail Fence

Cost to Build a Rail Fence

A fence contractor charges $1,075 to build a split rail fence but by building it yourself for $680 you save 36 percent. Adjust the home improvement and repair cost with your ZIP Code.

National Average Improvement and Repair Cost
Hours Pro 8.3 Diy 21.5
Money Pro $1075 Diy $680
Click to Adjust Cost to Your ZIP Code.
HA Get help
DIY Word of the Day
Flapper – the valve that controls flushing in a gravity-tank toilet
Related Job Costs: Plumbing Projects

Related Crossword Puzzle: Plumbing Basics
By Gene and Katie Hamilton

A rail fence is one of the easiest to construct because its components posts with holes for horizontal rails fit together like pins in a slot. While its original use was to keep livestock from straying into a neighbor's homestead, today its natural good looks make a rail fence a pleasant addition to just about anyone's home. It defines property lines without putting up barriers or obstructing a view. The height of the fence is determined by the height of the posts and consequently whether there are two or three rails.

The first step for any fencing project is to consult your property survey so you know exactly where your property begins and ends. In most areas, a building permit is required to build a fence, so check with your local building department to see if one is needed and learn about any height restrictions and the requirement for the depth of the post holes. The depth depends on the frost line (how deep the ground freezes) is in your area. Also learn how close a fence can be to your neighbor’s property.

A fence contractor will charge $1,075 to build a 50-foot long rail fence, which includes the labor and material. You can buy the materials, including rails, posts and gravel to secure the posts, for $680 and build it yourself, saving 36 percent. The materials are sold at lumber yards, and home and garden centers. You'll need a post hole digger, shovel, carpenter's level, tape measure, and string and stakes.

A fence contractor doing the job with workers will take most of the day to build a rail fence, while a homeowner working alone will log in more than 20 hours.

Here's instructions from Lowes Install a Split Rail Fence.

That sums it up. Knowing the average cost to build a rail fence lets you compare doing it yourself with what you can expect to pay a contractor. To customize the cost to where you live add your ZIP Code in the cost box.

Improvement and Repair Cost Updated 2019

The cost and time data is generated by averaging labor and material data from annually updated cost books used by contractors and refined by the authors' experience remodeling 13 houses. They are authors of 20 home improvement books and Do It Yourself or Not, a weekly column syndicated by Tribune Content Agency. The national cost can be adjusted by ZIP Code.


Would you do this project?

Poll Results

  • DIY77%
  • PRO23%