Earth Berm then fence?

Old 02-11-14, 05:39 AM
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Earth Berm then fence?

Has anyone ever (or heard of) building an earth berm on their property and then a fence on top of that in order to get a higher fence height? My township only allows a 6ft fence but someone told me that I may be able to get away with building an earth berm then fence on top to achieve a 9-10ft fence height. I have a busy road behind my house and I am looking for the most effective, legal way to get around the code.
Old 02-11-14, 12:32 PM
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You should discuss the matter with your township's building department. Their interpretation of the 6' maximum may require it be measured from natural ground, before any berms are constructed. If that's the case, your fence-on-a-berm plan won't fly, and you could be required to remove it if you decide to build it anyway. On the other hand, they might not have a problem with the idea.
Old 02-12-14, 06:04 AM
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If you go the berm route, make sure the soil is well compacted. Otherwise, the fence posts will not remain upright.
Old 02-22-14, 03:34 AM
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Installing a fence on top of a berm;

In most townships the installation of the berm itself must be approved before doing so. The berm will stop natural flow of drainage from rain. In putting a berm on your property there must be no prevention of water drain off to sewers, lakes, ponds and or streams.

As for installing a fence on top of the berm. In most areas doing so is a direct violation of the building code if the fence is above the height limited by your building department.

Keep in mind ... Even if the building department is not notified prior to the berm being installed and even if the fence is installed without the building department seeing the property before hand, there may be an unscheduled inspection of the fence after it is installed.
The fact that you live on a busy road can hurt as well as help.

The place where it can hurt is that in every touch of construction you do on your home everyone that passes by can see everything that goes into your home.
The place where it can help is that if you have the desire to really try to make some changes you can attempt to get a variance from the city you live in to do the improvement you wish to do.
There have been many jobs installed in my career where the customers received special permission based on their special situations.

There is no legal way to get around the legal system. If you live in a string of homes where the back fence of your neighbors are at the max height of 6 feet and your fence is 2 or 3 feet above, it will be noticed.

An added idea, is to install your fence at the max height and then plant shrubs either on your side of the fence or the outside of the fence, letting the shrubs grow , eventually topping the fence and giving you the privacy you need. The eventual change of growth will not be as noticeable as the immediate installation of there being either a very old unnoticeable fence, or no fence, then a berm, and then a fence installed on top of the berm.

My best suggestion would be to speak to your township and find out if they will allow you to apply for a building variance.

Good Luck with your project either way you choose to go....

Greg's Custom Fence NJ~

Last edited by Shadeladie; 09-02-14 at 12:17 PM.
Old 03-23-14, 04:23 PM
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How about 4x4's at 12 ft with 48" below SOIL ?

I also used 5ft lengths of 8inch x 60" Galvanized ducts as the tubes holding the 4x4 's and concrete, with 1 foot above ground for new support above the water line.
Cheaper than the cardboard Concrete tubes.
I will put LATTICE on top of the Fence, at least 2-1/2' (split the 4' sections),
and Hope to grow the IVY as fast as Possible!
On my side, I will slap concrete and/or mortar to make a permanent fence.
The Treated Posts need to stay dry for 40 years - I should be gone by then!
running 2x4 wire across the bottom, slapped in with Sand mix (concrete) to hold it all on both sides, with clay dug for swimming pools at $10 per load.
Wire to keep the animals out.
Raising my property 8"-12" after Hurricane Ike pushed 8" across my field for 2 days.
And adding French drainage too, for the neighbors' tension.
Old 03-26-14, 02:04 AM
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I agree with Wirepuller38.

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