We all need our privacy, even if we get along with our neighbours. The last thing you want is for prying eyes to be watching when you’re trying to have a family meal, read a book or catch some rays. But with the way that housing is being built in the UK, it’s not uncommon for gardens to have several overlooking houses and there’s not much we can do about that.
But we do have some innovative ways that you can block your neighbours view and feel that much-needed sense of privacy in your own backyard.
The Best And Most Affordable Ways To Block Your Neighbours’ View
We’re in the middle of a global financial crisis so we understand that you aren’t going to want to spend more than necessary on improving the privacy of your garden. Who could blame you for thinking that this might be an expensive job? But the reality is that there are some great ways to keep your garden secluded without having to spend a small fortune.
Choose Your Fencing Wisely
One of the simplest and most traditional ways to improve your privacy in the garden is to put up fences. If the standard six foot wooden fence just isn’t enough then it is also possible to buy corrugated metal fencing which is denser and blocks out more of next door’s view. That said, you have to consider that these can look pretty imposing so may not fit the aesthetic of every garden.
But one of the most brilliant benefits of corrugated metal is that it also blocks out sound a lot better than wood. If you and the neighbouring property have patios right next to one another and you don’t want them listening in on your conversations, this might be a good choice.
If you’re struck by the idea of a more traditional fence then you can still improve the effectiveness of wood by installing screens along the length of the fence. This will prevent your neighbours being able to see through any gaps and with so many materials and designs to choose from, you can tailor the look to your liking. It’s perfectly possible to buy a faux ivy screen for less than £50!
Go For A Greener Option
Fences do a great job at improving your privacy but they’re not to everyone’s liking. If you prefer a more natural looking garden then planting hedges and trees will stay in keeping with this while also creating a nice barrier between you and next door.
It’s a good idea to plant fast growing greenery as this will give you results much sooner. Evergreen hedges and shrubs are ideal as your privacy won’t be invaded during the winter months. Something like holly is perfect as it grows very dense and the pretty red berries provide a splash of colour in late autumn and early winter.
The options we have talked about so far give a moderate amount of privacy but if you require more, you’re going to have to start thinking about going up!
By this, we mean adding height to existing fences which you can do by adding taller screens, trees and other items to increase the height of the fence. With that in mind, we should point out that there are laws in the UK as to how high a boundary can be so make sure you check local limitations before doing any work.
Bamboo screens work very well as they’re durable, natural looking and easy to put up.
Block The View of Your Seating Area
Potentially the place we want the most privacy in our backyards is our seating area. Nobody wants to be enjoying lunch in the sun or evening drinks with friends only to discover that the neighbours can see everything you’re doing.
But there are some brilliantly affordable ways of blocking their view of the seating area.
For starters, something as simple as a large parasol can be strategically placed to prevent prying eyes. You also have the benefit of protection from the sun and what’s great about this is that you can move the parasol around which is ideal if you don’t want a permanent structure.
You might decide to use curtains if you have a pergola or gazebo in your seating area. It’s possible to purchase a gazebo that comes with curtains which you can open and close to your liking making this one of the most versatile options.
For pergolas, you can buy special outdoor curtains and attach these around the sides to stop those nosy neighbours from getting a look in. This is a super cheap option but just make sure that you have a secure way to attach them.
If money is really tight then there’s no need to worry as a sail shade won’t cost much more than twenty quid and will provide excellent privacy from above. If your issue is that there are a lot of windows overlooking from the upper storeys of neighbouring homes, then this is potentially the best option for you.
Sail shades are very easy to install and can be left up as a semi-permanent fixture as they’re typically made from pretty hard wearing materials.
Again, for privacy from above, an awning is a great way to give yourself a bit of cover. Not to mention, they’re excellent for providing protection from the elements. Unlike a sail shade, an awning is a little bit more permanent but once it’s up, it’ll retract and can be used in a versatile manner.
You should consider that awnings tend to cost a little more than sail shades, with the cheapest being a little over £100. But in the scheme of things, that’s a huge saving compared to something like erecting an entire new row of fences.
I love a lot of greenery in the garden. But it doesn’t only make it look beautiful, it’s also a great way to add a little extra privacy to your patio.
Buying a series of large potted plants and placing them around the edges of your seating area is a great way to block the neighbours view. They’re perfect on a patio especially if you have a fence with gaps as they can be popped directly in front and no more peeking from next door!
Just remember to take the conditions on your patio into consideration. Some plants prefer sun while others need to be in the shade. If you go to your local garden centre, the staff there will be able to advise you on the right large plants for your patio.
Create A Cascading Landscape
When you first think about this, it can seem like a pretty pricey venture but you’ll be amazed at just how affordable a cascading landscape can be. I would hasten to warn you, however, that this is a very labour intensive option so make sure that you are prepared for how physical it can get.
You’ll need to layer the edges of your garden and place plants, ornaments and lighting on the various levels. This adds a lot of depth to your garden and gives you the opportunity to create secluded spots that your neighbours will have a very hard time peering into!
Do you have problems with neighbours being able to see directly into your windows? If so then hanging plants might be the solution to your problems. Plus, they’re incredibly affordable; you could spend just £100 and get your hands on several large hangers to put in front of your windows and block the view.
What’s more, these hanging planters give your home a beautiful appearance and also a chance to show off your taste in flowers. What’s not to love?!
You pay a lot of money to live in your home so you shouldn’t have to share it with the rest of the world. But unless you live on a remote farm then there’s a good chance that you’ll have at least one neighbour with a direct view of your garden.
But it doesn’t have to cost the earth to improve your privacy and have some much-needed peace. There are lots of affordable ways to block the view from your neighbours’ home and relax without having to worry.