The History Of Our Family-Owned Katy Fence Company
Updated: Jan 28
Believe it or not we literally receive about 3 calls per week, mostly from crews just starting out asking us about our history. How did we become the go to fence company in Katy? Today, I will pull back the curtain and share with you our family secret. It all started when I was a teenager, my parents were older, and I am the youngest of six children so by the time my parents had me their “surprise” they let me take the reins and I made a real mess of things but the best thing I ever did was spend my summers working for a construction crew where I learned how to repair fences. By the time I reached sixteen I was making enough money that I dropped out of school and went into fence repair work full time. However, when I decided to strike out on my own and start up a crew in the 1980’s in a small town called Springfield Missouri we couldn’t just slap two board together and nail them, we actually had to go through a training course and become certified. Times have changed and as such when I moved to follow my girl, Melissa to Texas I learned that there were no rules or regulations for Katy fence companies. At first, I felt pretty defeated, like all this training and licensing I had acquired was a waste of time until I rolled up on my first few jobsite and realized that while everything is bigger and better in Texas, they didn’t have a lick of sense about how to properly install a fence. Sorry fellas that’s not meant as an insult just telling it as I see it. The way most Katy fence comoanies install fences they wouldn’t last a cold winter season where I am from. A quality fence should be able to withstand whatever outdoor elements are tossed at it because these good, hard working, people are investing in it and unlike other parts of their home a fence has nothing to shield it from the weather including exposure to harsh UV rays, moisture, and the once in a blue moon freeze. Instead of resorting to building my fences the way other fence contractors do I instead stuck with the way I had been taught and setting yourself apart is essential to succeeding at anything you do.
The Way I Was Taught To Do Fence Installation
First, I was taught that the best way to do fence installation is to start with a steady and strong foundation so that it stands the test of time. The foundation we include as a standard feature of our fence installation is what most other local fence companies consider an upcharge. Once the yard has been marked by 811, our fence contractors get to work. We use an auger to dig holes that are 2 feet deep so that we can anchor a 4th of the post in the ground. The post we use have been pressure treated and Kline dried. While we prefer cedar pickets, the best post for our alkalotic soil is pressure treated lumber. The post is the most important part as it prevents your panels from splitting, cracking, or warping prematurely. A post is also going to determine how straight the fence is and how accurate it is set according to the property line. A weak post leads to a shorter life span and more fence repairs. The way I have been instructed to secure my post is to keep the post 7 and 8 feet depending on the run of fence that needs to be installed. Once the holes are dug, we then fill each hole with concrete instead of sand or pea gravel. We use a 50-pound bag of fast setting Quikrete per each post so that it spread the weight at the bottom of the post and supports the height of the fence which is generally 8 feet. 2 feet is anchored into the ground to have a 6 feet privacy fence.
Once all the post are in the ground, the top is shaved off to ensure the board are even both length and width wise. After the wood is cut then you measure and cut your support braces starting with the top first. A support brace is what you screw your pickets too. Now one of the features that do not come including but many people prefer is rot boards. A rot board is a 2X6 pressure treated lumber that keeps the pickets from touching the ground, so the fence does not get hit by lawn equipment.
Next, we install the fences braces, most fence companies use only a top and bottom, We use a top, middle, and bottom because it makes the fence more structurally sound.
Once the support beans are screwed not nailed into place, we screw in the pickets that are custom made, Our panels are not preassembled but made on site. Once the fence is installed there are added features that some homeowners request but do not come standard including cap and trim. Cap and trim is a decorative piece of lumber to give the fences a 3 dimensional look. Most caps are a standard 2 X6 board but trim can come in a variety of different sizes and widths. After the fence is installed, we build a nice solid gate on site that will only fit that one particular section of fence. We do not mass produce our gate! Our preferred choice of lumber for building gates is cedar because its lighter weight and this prevents sagging.
Because of the techniques we use to install fences we feel confident enough to back up our work. Our Katy fence company offers long term warranties on all the fences we install including wooden, chain link, aluminum, composite, and vinyl. On our wooden fences we also hand select each piece of lumber we use and if the fence has issues because of craftmanship we offer free fence repairs for 3 years.
Our Theory About Fence Repairs
Over the past 25 years of owning my fence company I have seen some pretty shoddy work and spoke to local homeowners who have felt taken advantage of because they have a fence that after just a few years is falling over. This is something no one wants to endure so by offering free fence repairs with the purchase of a new fence this provides safety and security that if they get the short end of the stick they have some type of recourse.
We also don’t follow the rule of thumb that a fence needs to be ripped out and replaced if the homeowner has a fence where 20% needs to be repaired. We understand the theory but most contractors suggest this as a faulty way to increase sales because local fence companies make more money from installing fences then by doing basic repairs, hence the need for a minimum. However, we believe that if the post is solid then why not just fix the fence, do a good job, and when the fence does need to be replaced, they will call. We also only charge a $250.00 minimum, but this is only because of our time, gas, and insurance. Most homeowners are willing to pay for a job well done!
How to Sale You Fence Installation & Repair Services.
If you are a new fencing contractor trying to find new customers and retain existing customers can be a chore. Being in the suburbs means there is stiff competition. One of the ways we do this is by word-of-mouth referrals, when you do a good job, show up on time, and leave your customer happy with the workmanship and customer service you provide they are happy to refer you to their friends, family, and neighbors.
Another way is to find someone who is good at SEO, we work with an SEO firm in Sugar Land that has allowed us to build up our reviews, show up for major keywords and sends us clients by making sure they can find us online. Currently we have 45 – 5-star reviews and we just started our marketing efforts 2 years ago due to COVID 19, prior to this we found our customers through referrals and direct response marketing. Getting reviews is simply a matter of asking, most people are happy to leave a review but ask them to leave an “honest review” so that other people know what they can expect based off the reviews your customers write for you.
Now you know our family secrete if you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact us. If you are looking to have a fence installed or repaired in Katy, Richmond, Sugar Land, or the greater Houston area then call Emerson Exterior Home Enhancements. We provide fast and free estimates, same day and next day fence repairs, and can install your fence with little to no disruption to your family. Visit us o line to learn more, or call 281-545-7740.