How High Can I build a Fence in Utah?

A fence is a great way to boost property value and create division between neighbors but before you build your fence, it is important to make sure that you know the answers to some important questions like do you really know where your property line is? Are there HOA restrictions to building a fence on your property? How high are you legally allowed to build your fence? Here are some great questions to consider and be sure to contact Western Fence Company for more information. 



How high can I build a fence on my property?

In residential areas, local rules commonly restrict artificial (constructed) backyard fences to a height of six feet. In front yards, the limit is often four feet.

Height restrictions may also apply to natural fences — fences of bushes or trees — if they meet the ordinance’s general definition of fences. Trees that are planted in a row and grow together to form a barrier are usually considered a fence. When natural fences are specifically mentioned in the laws, the height restrictions commonly range from five to eight feet.

If, however, you have a good reason (for example, you need to screen your house from a noisy or unsightly neighboring use, such as a gas station), you can ask the city for a one-time exception to the fence law, called a variance. Talk to the neighbors before you make your request, to explain your problem and get them on your side.


My neighbor is building a fence that violates the local fence law. How can I get the law enforced?

Cities are not in the business of sending around fence inspection teams, and as long as no one complains, a nonconforming fence may stand forever.

Tell the neighbor about the law as soon as possible. She probably doesn’t know what the law is, and if the fence is still being built, may be able to modify it at a low cost. If she suggests that you mind your own business, alert the city. All it takes in most circumstances is a phone call to the planning or zoning department or the city attorney’s office. The neighbor will be ordered to conform; if she doesn’t, the city can fine her and even sue.


What is a boundary fence?

A boundary fence, also called a division fence or partition fence, is a fence that is located on the line between two properties and is used by both owners. Boundary fences are owned by both owners when both use the fence. What constitutes “use” varies by state. Some states define use as occupancy – such as using the land up to the fence, perhaps by planting crops. Some use the word “join” for use – that is, a neighbor who hooks up another fence to the boundary fence is “using” the boundary fence. Most states say a fence is used only when the landowner’s property is entirely enclosed by fences.

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