FAQ's

Welcome to our new Frequently Asked Questions page!  

This is a work in progress, so please contact us if an answer isn't available yet.  Type a single keyword into the search field for the best results, or browse the different question groups listed below!

About Us

What services are/are not provided by Austin Brothers Fence Company?


SERVICES WE OFFER

  • Residential fence installation

    • Cedar, Treated Pine, Bull Panel, Vinyl, and Composite

    • Set in concrete in the ground or bracketed to concrete walls/slabs

  • Fabrication & installation of steel swing gate frames

    • Single or double gate frames, with one of our standard fence designs attached

  • Installation of new fencing on existing steel posts

    • Requires on-site verification of reliability

    • No warranty in the event of excessive post shifting

  • Stain & Sealer application

    • Several brands and colors available

    • Both oil and water based options

  • Old fence removal

    • Old posts cut off at based and buried (standard option)

    • Old posts removed fully, including concrete (expensive option)

    • Chain link removal with small trees growing along line costs more

  • Minor fence line clearing

    • Tree limbs, bushes, trees less than 2” in diameter

SERVICES WE DO NOT OFFER
  • Relocation of existing fences

    • Iron fences are the exception

    • Small relocations of other fence types may be included in broader projects, pending Sales Manager approval

  • Concrete walls, fences, or curbing

  • Chain link, game, or ranch fencing

  • Installation of deck railings where posts cannot be set in ground or bracketed to concrete

  • Fabrication & installation of steel slide gates

  • Installation of fencing on existing wood posts

  • Height extension of existing fences

  • Deck installation or repair

  • Tree removal or stump grinding

  • Sprinkler relocation

  • Landscaping

  • Painting




How long have the Austin Brothers been in the fence industry?


Going on 20 years! Head to our About Us page to read more.




What areas of Austin do your serve?


Our normal service area covers Austin, Pflugerville, Lakeway, Dripping Springs, Kyle, and Buda. Clients located just outside our normal service area are asked to obtain a Quick Quote online and place a deposit prior to their on-site appointment. Changes can still be made to design after deposit is paid. Please see Service Area map below and contact us with any questions!





Estimates & Pricing

How long are estimates good for?


With material prices in a constant state of change, we can't guarantee our pricing for more than 14 days. You can lock in the price per foot on an estimate by putting down a 60% deposit to get in line for installation; there's usually plenty of time to finalize your quote prior to your start date, and deposits are fully refundable!




Does Austin Brothers Fence Company have a minimum rate?


Yes, we have to make a certain amount on every project to justify the associated costs on our end; that usually translates to a higher price per foot on smaller projects. Our rates are calculated automatically based on footage, design, gates, and upgrades to ensure a fair price for everyone.




Does Austin Brothers Fence Company price match competitors?


This is a tricky question, but the short answer is no. We're always happy to do quote comparisons to make sure we're comparing similar options, but there's so much more than materials and design mixed into the pricing of a high quality fence installed by a company offering great service and the proper protection for their clients. Here are some of the benefits of going with Austin Brothers Fence Company:

  • Direct owner involvement
  • 20 years of experience in the fence industry, per Austin Brother
  • Quality Control Manager visits on every project
  • Unmatched installation standard (see "Design & Quality Standards")
  • Liability Insurance coverage
  • Workers' Compensastion Insurance coverage
  • Prompt warranty responses
  • Dedicated, knowledgeable office staff
We know there are a lot of cheap options out there, but we hope you'll give us the chance to show you just how valuable investment in a quality fence can be!




Can I make changes to my project after contract acceptance?


Absolutely! We'd be happy to make any adjustments you'd like prior to your installation start date. Some options require additional cost or fabrication time, so it's always good to have your design and layout plan finalized a couple weeks prior to installation.




Why does my quote charge for the footage of my gate AND charge for a gate separately?


Every fence design has a different price per foot, and there are thousands of design possibilities out there. So, to avoid creating thousands of gate items in our system, we charge the price per foot for overall footage (including the footage that's part of each gate) and then charge separately for adding a gate frame and hardware. Here's how the math works out: (Fence Footage Price + Gate Footage Price) = Overall Footage Price SO Overall Footage Price + Gate Frame Price = Total Price





Pre-Installation

How do I get an estimate?


Click here!




How do I move forward once I've accepted an estimate?


Depending on the type of estimate you receive, there are different options for moving forward: QUICK QUOTE Option #1: Pay a deposit to reserve your spot in line for installation and to lock in your price per foot then meet with us on-site to verify details and finalize your total, with any changes going on your final balance. Option #2: Meet with us on-site to verify details and finalize your total, then pay a deposit to reserve your spot in line for installation. This option is not available for projects outside our normal service area. Because we typically have a several week installation wait time after deposit payment, most clients choose option #1 to get the ball rolling and to lock in the current price per foot for their chosen design. Deposits are fully refundable if plans change. BID APPOINTMENT If you elected to meet with us on-site instead of going the Quick Quote route, simply click the "Accept" button on your estimate or send us email approval and we'll send over a deposit invoice so we can get you going! Since we already met on-site, there is no need for an additional finalization appointment.




What should I expect after I've paid my deposit?


We'll reach out shortly after deposit payment with additional information that'll help you prepare for your installation, including a tentative start date. You'll usually receive all of our pre-installation documentation within 1 week of deposit payment.




Will someone meet with me on-site prior to installation?


Absolutely! Even if you start your project by requesting a Quick Quote, we'll meet with you on-site prior to installation to finalize all the details we need to confirm your estimate and to make sure your project goes smoothly.




What's the wait time for installation?


Our average wait time is anywhere from 2-8 weeks after deposit payment, depending on the season and the fence design chosen. No matter how long the wait is, we'll keep you in the loop the entire time with automatic schedule updates!




Does Austin Brothers Fence Company offer firm installation dates?


We don't. One way or another, any company who promises firm installation dates does so at the expense of other clients; shortcuts and rescheduling are inevitable for the clients before or after a project with firm deadlines. We go about things differently, and it pays off for every client: We work through projects in the order of deposits received, and we work on every project until it's done right. This means that sometimes we exceed our expected project duration, and we're forced to push our next project back. We believe this is preferable to rushing to meet deadlines, and our clients agree. Read our reviews and you'll notice many comments about long waits and reschedules that are worth it in the end. If you're looking for a company that'll guarantee installation on or by a certain date, we're probably not the company for you. If you're looking for a company that's clear and communicative about their process and doesn't make promises they can't keep, click here to get started!




How will I know when my fence will be installed?


We'll send a calendar invite via email that'll show your tentative start date and the expected duration of your project from start to finish. As we work through the projects before yours, we'll update this date range so it's more concrete the closer we get.




Do I need to have my property lines and utility lines marked?


Having your property lines surveyed prior to installation is always a good way to make sure we're installing your new fence along the right lines, but it's not absolutely necessary. We'll take care of public utility line marking, but you'll want to provide details for the location of any private utility lines (propane, septic, irrigation, etc). See our terms for details on underground lines.




Do I need to get a permit for my fence?


Within the City of Austin, there are no permit requirements for a fence up to 6'H as long as the fence is installed outside of any restricted easements. There are special conditions for building higher than 6'H. City of Austin Requirements: There are two situations that make a privacy fence up to 8'H permissible:

  1. There is at least a 2' drop/rise in elevation within 50' of the property line upon which we're building the fence
  2. There is something along the fence line that would make it easy for a child to gain access to a backyard with a pool in it
If a property satisfies one of those conditions, you do NOT have to seek a variance or permit with the city. You would need your neighbor's written consent, but you don't need to file that with the city you just hold on to it. There's a great new site the city has developed that allows you to view the elevation around any property in Austin: http://www.austintexas.gov/gis/propertyprofile/ Information provided by Leane Heldensels, Austin Development Assistance Center Various cities within Austin (Rollingwood, for example) require a permit regardless of fence design or height.




Is my deposit refundable if my plans change?


Absolutely.





Installation

Do I need to be present during installation?


Not unless we specifically request it. On most projects, we've gathered all the information we need prior to installation and we can get to work without impacting our clients' schedule, but in some cases we require input from our client before proceeding.




Who will be managing my project?


You'll have three individuals managing your project in different ways: ON-SITE PROJECT FOREMAN Your installation crew will be managed on-site by an experienced and skilled Foreman who will have all the details gathered at your bid appointment and/or finalization appointment, along with all the additional information we gather prior to installation. The Foreman will work directly with your Project Manager and you to find solutions to any issues that arise during installation. QUALITY CONTROL MANAGER We employ a Quality Control Manager who stops by projects on a regular basis to make sure our installation standards are being upheld. PROJECT MANAGER Jeff, one of the Austin Brothers, will be managing your project remotely by checking in with your Foreman and our Quality Control Manager regularly. He makes it a priority to stop by every project at least once.




Does Austin Brothers Fence Company use Sub-Contractors?


Yes, we do. Every beautiful fence you see on our website is the result of the hard work of one of our incredible contractors. We understand the concern about sub-contractors, but ours have shown consistent dedication to the highest installation standards in the industry, and our quality control and owner involvement doesn't allow for any deviation. Check out our gallery for some assurance!




What insurance policies does Austin Brothers Fence Company carry?


We carry Workers' Compensation and Auto Insurance, along with a $1 million Liability Insurance policy. We've got you covered!




Once started, how long will my project take?


​The duration of a project depends on several factors:

  • FOOTAGE
    • 0 - 40' Standard Design: 1-2 days
    • 40 - 120' Standard Design: 2-3 days
    • 120 - 250' Standard Design: 3-5 days
    • 250' or more: Add about 1 day per 100'
  • COMPLEXITY OF DESIGN
  • DIGGING CONDITIONS
  • GATES (3 or more gates will add a full day)
  • WEATHER




Will my yard be open during installation?  How long?


Yes. Depending on the size of a project, all or part of your yard will be open for at least 1 day while post concrete sets.




Is there a way to keep my yard enclosed during installation?


You bet, we offer temporary mesh fencing. Whether you'd like the security of keeping a border around your yard at night or you need a safe place for your dogs to do their business at night, let us know and we'll take care of you!




What happens to my old fence?


We recycle as much as possible (steel posts, concrete, lumber) and take the rest to a local landfill.




Will my old fence posts and concrete be fully removed?


We can remove all of the old conrete, but we don't typically recommend this option unless it's absolutely necessary. Labor and dump fees for full removal are much higher than the standard practice of cutting the posts below grade and burying the old concrete.




What happens if my sprinkler lines are hit during installation?


Most companies will ask their clients to cover the cost of water line damage, but we like to make our projects as simple and hassle-free as possible for our clients, so, in most cases, we cover the cost of damaged water lines.




What happens if my public utility lines (gas, cable, etc.) are hit during installation?


We'll contact the proper authorities and/or businesses to start the repair process, and, in most cases, our liability insurance will cover the cost. The one exception here is if the client's desired fence location runs too close to a utility line. We highly recommend choosing fence line locations that leave plenty of room between post holes and utillity lines.




What is the difference between a public and a private utility, and why isn't Austin Brothers Fence Company liable for damage to private underground utilities?


At your home, you have many public utility lines and at least one private utility line. The most common public utility lines include gas, cable, and internet. When these lines are set, they're set with a wire that allows the city to map their location and mark them so we know where not to dig. Private utility lines include your water main (connecting your house to the city meter for your drinking and house water), sprinkler lines, propane lines, septic systems, pool water lines, sometimes sewage lines, and others. These utilities are not set with a wire to allow them to be located, so neither the city or our crew will have any idea where they are. We accidentally break sprinkler lines quite often, but rarely break any of the other lines.




What should I do if I have concerns or questions during installation?


Please let your project Foreman know right away, or reach out to your Project Manager. We want you to be comfortable with your fence project at all times, so please don't hesitate to communicate any concerns or questions!




Does Austin Brothers Fence Company install through the weekend?


Austin Brothers is committed to improving the quality of life of all our employees, so we do our best to reserve the weekends for family, friends, relaxation, and recouperation. Building fences is very hard work, so this is particularly important for our installers. Sometimes, with permission from the client, we'll work through the weekend to make up for rain delays earlier in the week.





After Installation


Designs & Quality Standards

Does Austin Brothers Fence Company use nails or screws on wood fences?


We use a combination of both! Long screws are always necessary and included for attaching rails or other framework to fence posts, but stainless steel ring shank nails are the best option for attaching individual pickets to the rails/framework of a fence. Companies who tout "Screws Only" typically aren't using the right type of screws to begin with (exterior coated screws used on Cedar pickets will lead to black streaks down a fence within months), and they tend to assume other companies don't use screws to attach rails and framework to the post. We're confident our use of screws AND stainless steel ring shank nails is the most durable and aesthetically pleasing approach in the fencing industry.




Why are Austin Brothers' gates more than competitor's gates?


There's a lot that goes into a properly built, long-lasting gate, and most companies leave out just about everything that's needed, leaving you with a gate that doesn't function properly within weeks. We offer two types of gate frames for our wood fences: Cedar Framed and Steel Framed. The actual look of the gate varies depending on the fence design chosen, but the look of the frame and the hardware remains consistent, unless customized. Here's what goes into each of our frame types: CEDAR FRAMES - Cedar-only build for less warping and twisting - Full exterior frame w/ angle brace (no z-frames) - Steel gate posts for no warping or rotting - Steel angle braces (x4) for reduced sagging long-term - Gate stop to prevent latch damage - Hinges bolted through hinge post and gate frame for reduced sagging - Prompt warranty adjustments if necessary Our Cedar Framed gates are the best in the industry, but they're still made of lumber that will eventually age and decay with constant expansion, contraction, and exposure to the elements. For the lowest maintenance and most reliability, we highly recommend steel gate frames! STEEL FRAMES - Steel-only build for no warping or twisting - Steel truss rod for less shifting - Larger steel posts on double gates - Gate stop to prevent latch damage - Optional Crows Feet for the ultimate reliability - Automation-ready Images of gate stop installation:




What do different gap sizes look like on a horizontal fence?


Different gap sizes between your horizontal boards can make a big difference in appearence. When viewing the images below, keep in mind that your lumber will expand and contract with changing weather conditions, so the gaps may end up larger than they are on a new fence. FULL PRIVACY - Boards installed with no gaps, shrink to very small gaps 1/4" GAPS - Boards installed 1/4" apart, shrink to roughly 3/8" apart 1/2" GAPS - Boards installed 1/2" apart, shrink to roughly 5/8" apart 3/4" GAPS - Boards installed 3/4" apart, shrink to roughly 7/8" apart 1" GAPS - Boards installed 1" apart, shrink to roughly 1 1/8" apart 1 1/2" GAPS - Boards installed 1 1/2" apart, shrink to roughly 1 3/8" apart




How long will my fence last?


Environmental factors (like direct sunlight and moisture exposure) contribute to a wide-range of expectations, but the following can be expected as a general guide: Wood Fences (Horizontal, Vertical, Bull Panel)

  • Basic Build: 10+ years
  • Recommended Build: 20+ years, or more with regular stain/sealer application
    • Though the fence will last longer, the main benefit of choosing our recommended upgrades is the increase in it's aesthetic appeal long-term. Less warping, less fading, straighter lines, and more durability.
Composite Fences
  • Trex Seclusions/Horizons: 25+ years, with 25 Year Manufacturer's Warranty
Iron Fences
  • Welded Panels: Depends on manufacturer (15-30 years)
  • Riveted Panels: Depends on manufacturer (15-30 years)




What gate hardware options are available?


WOOD FRAMED GATES

  • Standard Hardware:
    • Black coated strap hinges
    • Black coated, post mounted latch
      • Padlock or combination lock compatible
    • Steel angle braces to reduce sagging over-time
    • Gate stop to prevent frame twisting and latch damage
  • Available Upgrades:
    • Powder coated hinges and latch (custom color options)
    • Spring for self closing function​​
    • Yardlock Combination or EZ Gate Latch
STEEL FRAMED GATES
  • Standard Hardware:
    • Heavy duty, welded door hinges OR black coated strap hinges
      • Strap hinges required on vertical fence builds
    • Black coated, post mounted latch
      • Padlock or combination lock compatible
    • Single gate stop to prevent latch damage
  • Available Upgrades:
    • Heavy duty J-bolt hinges for larger gates (typically included automatically)
    • Yardlock Combination Latch (see above)
    • EZ Gate Latch (see above)




How thick are the steel posts used by ABFC?


ROUND POSTS 2 3/8" Fence Posts: SCH 20 = 0.095" wall thickness = 13 gauge *Home Depot & Lowes posts are thinner, at 16 gauge. We never use these. 2 3/8" Gate Posts & Optional Upgrade for Fence Posts: SCH 40 = 0.154" wall thickness = 8 gauge SQUARE POSTS 2" Galvanized Fence Posts: 14 gauge = 0.078" wall thickness 2" Galvanized Gate Posts: 11 gauge = 0.125" wall thickness 2" Black Coated Steel Posts (used for fence and gate posts): 16 gauge = 0.063" wall thickness 3" Galvanized Fence Posts, Black Coated Fence and Gate Posts: 14 gauge = 0.078" wall thickness 3" Galvanized Gate Posts: 11 gauge = 0.125" wall thickness 4" Large Gate Posts (Mild Steel Powder Coated): 3 gauge = 0.25" wall thickness





Visit our FENCE 101 page for more info

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