VII. Fences

  2. The Cooperative strongly urges that, whenever possible, hedges or other natural foliage be used in preference to the erection of fences. (See Section V.D. for hedge planting guidelines.)

    A professional horticulturist or any nursery can provide suggestions as to plants that would be suitable to your yard. They take into consideration drainage, soil condition, and if the yard is sunny or shady. Since the member is responsible for the maintenance or replacement of plants, this could save both time and money.

    1. Written permission by permit is required from GHI for all types of fences, either new or replacement. Replacement of existing fences, where more than 25 percent is being repaired, must follow these rules. Fences shall be placed on designated perimeter yard lines with the following exceptions:
      1. Fence placement shall be setback twelve (12) inches from paved walkways or sidewalks, except where GHI staff determines a need for more room, and twenty-four (24) inches from parking areas or driveways.
      2. Fence placement shall be uniform bounding street rights-of-way and shall not create a visibility hazard for traffic
      3. Fences are allowed to enclose the gardenside yard, or the side yard, or the combined gardenside and side yards, as defined in Yard Line Descriptions VI.B.3. No interior fences shall be permitted.
      4. GHI staff may authorize minor alterations to the overall perimeter placement rules (i.e. relative to yard lines) with
        1. individual offsets to avoid tangible obstacles (e.g. trees, hedges, downspouts, access obstructions, sidewalks),
        2. a uniform offset to avoid multiple interferences, or
        3. offsets (individual or uniform) to utilize locations of existing fence posts or request interpretation of the Board of Directors via the process described in Exceptions to Regulations, XX.
    2. Installation of adjacent man-made fences (e.g. chainlink, wood, vinyl, etc.) on a shared yard line is not allowed.
    3. If a fence exists and does not belong to the member, permission shall be obtained from the adjoining member before it can be removed. A copy of this permission is put in their file.
    5. The maximum fence height shall be forty two (42) inches. Maximum post height shall not exceed forty eight (48) inches. The height and location of a protective barrier fence for a pool, pond, hot tub, or spa shall be as approved by the Board of Directors (see XIII.).
    6. All posts shall be set perfectly upright, in twelve (12) inches of concrete, in an eighteen (18) inch deep hole. Concrete may be omitted if the post is set in a hole 24 inches deep to prevent the fence from sagging.
    7. Posts made from trees or tree branches are not acceptable.
    8. Each fenced area of a gardenside or serviceside yard shall be accessible from the adjoining common area or walk by at least one (1) non-locking, thirty-six (36) inch width gate opening; an end home with fence bordering both gardenside and serviceside common area or access walk shall have two (2) gates. A gate shall be self-supporting, unobstructed, and shall be of similar material and design as the fencing. Common sidewalks established by GHI and access paths shall not be blocked by fences or additions. The location of the gate shall be approved by the Technical Services Department. Please bear in mind that in order for garbage collection to be made, the City of Greenbelt requires sufficient passageway to each unit so that trash collectors will have free access with their baskets.
    9. Fence styles within the row should harmonize.
    10. Fence company name signs are considered undesirable and shall not exceed four (4) linear inches or ten (10) square inches in total.
    1. Chain link fencing is the only wire fencing allowed. The wire must be vinyl coated in black, brown, or green, and the post, rails, and hardware must be a matching color.
    2. Existing chain link fencing is approved and shall remain in place, providing the material is sound and in good order, and that a top rail exists. The fences shall be maintained to keep the fencing and posts taut and in repair and free of all rust. All posts shall be capped. Repainting of chain link fencing with reflective (metallic) or bright colors is prohibited. Repainting shall be black, green or brown and shall match GHI approved vinyl coated fence wire colors. Paint must be exterior metal rated. Primer is recommended. Samples of GHI approved wire materials and paint colors are on file in the Management office.
    3. Evergreen screening of chain link fence is highly recommended. Trees shall not be permitted to grow in a manner that will adversely affect the fence.
    4. Poultry fencing or netting, farm or livestock fencing, electric, barbed wire fencing, and all other types of wire fencing other than chain link are prohibited.
    5. Inserts (whether metal, wood, or plastic) shall not be used.
    1. MATERIAL - Three types are approved as follows:Wood treated to CCA retention of 40# for both posts and fence material.
      1. CCA 40# retention for the posts, untreated white wood for the fence material. (Spruce, Hem-fir, etc.)
      2. Redwood posts and fence material.
      1. Posts shall be set 3" off the yard line if no fence exists, in order to avoid problems in the future.
      2. On frame buildings the centerline of the first post shall be set 6" from the face of the building. Fences shall not be attached to the building.
      3. Fence construction shall be accomplished in a neat, workmanlike manner.
      4. Hot dipped Galvanized or other approved fasteners for exterior application shall be used.
      5. Diagonal bracing is recommended at corners.
      1. Pressure treated material shall be stained or painted.
      2. White wood shall be treated with a wood preservative before being stained or painted. Use of a preservative treated stain shall satisfy the requirement.
      3. Redwood shall be sealed with a clear finish. Finishes may be gloss or semi-gloss.
      4. No creosote shall be used.
      5. The finished fence must present a neat appearance on all sides.
      6. First coating of each board or post prior to construction will assure no exposed ends or bare spots between boards. 
    4. STYLES
      1. There are a number of styles of fences on the market today, both pre-built or field built on the job site. A few of these are shown below.
        Fence Styles
        Board Estate
        Fence Styles
        6 Board Estate
        Fence Styles
        Colonial Gothic Picket
        Fence Styles
        Gothic Picket
        Fence Styles
        Marlboro Picket
        Fence Styles
        Mt. Vernon Picket
        Fence Styles
        Post and Rail
      2. 1. Solid board fences are not permitted. Minimum openness shall be 30%.
        2. Wood and wire fences similar to snow fences are not permitted.

      3. 1. Post and rail fences, both two (2) and three (3) rail, are good for yard line delineation, without disturbing the open visual concept that is desired
        2. Posts and rails shall be pressure treated to 40# retention.
        3. Planting at each post may be desired.
        4. Light gauge wire fencing may be attached to the inside of wood rail fences. All wire must be maintained in good condition, must terminate at a rail, and is limited to the height of the top rail. The bottom rail must be low enough to serve as a suitable terminus.

      4. Grass protection and flower bed fences under eighteen (18") inches in height are permitted. Consideration should be given to safety where they are adjacent to common walks.
      5. A drawing for building a simple picket fence is available from Technical Services for the asking. This fence is built from pressure treated lumber available from any local lumber dealer.
      1. The material must be free of such irregularities as loose or open knots, bark on edges, splinters, splits, etc.
      2. Wood picket fences are approved with the provision that the picket tops be rounded or flat.
      3. All work must be done in a neat workmanlike manner and in accord with the specific fence design.
      4. Fences for the larger townhouses are to follow these regulations except that fences shall be allowed only on the non-street side of the home.
  7. Vinyl fences that conform to the styles approved for wood fences and to all other applicable requirements are allowed. All vinyl fences must be installed according to manufacturer's instructions.

  9. Members do not require permission from GHI to remove fences in their own yards. GHI will remove a member's fence, at GHI expense, if the current member requests that this work be done and agrees not to seek permission to install a replacement fence for a period of three years. It will be GHI's responsibility to fill post holes and tamp, seed and straw. Members will be responsible for removing any shrubs or foliage growing through or around the fence.