Conventional privacy has become the backdrop of conversation, as our digital footprint is now the focal point of privacy. While everyone is talking about how to maintain privacy online, it’s important not to forget to secure your privacy in the comfort of your own home as well. From passers-by on the road to nosy neighbors, small steps can make all the difference when protecting your home from unwanted eyes. Luckily, you can mask your intentions of privacy by using creative, attractive measures around your home, ranging from shrubbery and shutters to courtyards and fences.


Before You Get Started


So you’ve decided you need some extra privacy around your home… what’s next? There are a few essential steps you should take in order to carry out your plan the right way. Every home is unique, so you have to decide what works best for you. In this article we will go through different options, but once you figure out which route you want to take, make sure you won’t run into any problems. For instance, if you are installing a boundary fence, talk with your neighbor about what works for them too. Transparency is key when it comes to changes that could affect someone else’s property line. Also, read up on the building codes in your area to make sure you stay in compliance.




The general consensus is that the most private part of your home is the interior of your house. We all can imagine the nightmare scenario of stepping out of the shower only to realize you are in plain sight of an unwanted viewer. To avoid living out this nightmare, start working on your windows. First, survey the perimeter of your house and take note of the placement of your windows from the street. Ask yourself if you’re comfortable with the view of your home from the outside looking in. If the answer is no, strategic window placement may be a good option for you. It restricts the view from outside while still providing natural light, fresh air and a view of the outside world. The only problem with window placement is that it requires renovation that could be costly. If your privacy budget doesn’t allow for such a project, there are a number of other effective window treatments:


Window paneling: Adding paneling to your windows can give you the privacy you need without restricting the function of the window. You can’t go wrong with a simple grid pattern which is very common among homes in Jacksonville. Paneling is cheaper than replacing a full window, but if you aren’t ready for some serious renovation then a less involved treatment is advised.


Curtains/blinds: Curtains and blinds are easy add-ons that help to control the transparency of your windows. While they are super cheap and effective, the only downfall of blinds and curtains is that when they’re closed, your visibility, ventilation and natural lighting are cut off.


Shutters: Shutters are a great option because they’re extremely efficient and stylish. While the downside of curtains includes the inability to control ventilation, lighting and visibility, you can get the best of both worlds with shutters. You have the ability to open your shutters to allow fresh air and natural lighting in, while still maintaining your privacy from the outside world. Another plus side of shutters is that there are a variety of style options. Plantation shutters are very popular right now, so they would be perfect for giving out-of-style bare windows the sharp finishing touch they would need.




The next place you’ll want to focus your efforts is on your yard and on the perimeter of your property. Creative landscaping kills two birds with one stone by maintaining your privacy and keeping your exterior aesthetically attractive. This process requires careful planning, as you want to make sure you are putting the right things in the right places. Try not to put similar plants in different parts of your yard as this can cause your yard to look too compartmentalized and structured. Finding out where your plants should be placed in an effort to block what you want to block can be difficult, and not to mention, it can look awkward, so don’t be afraid to seek help. Climate is another important factor to consider when shopping for trees to cover exposed areas of your home. Evergreens are always a great choice because they never lose their leaves. Try researching different options, and if you are completely lost, consult a professional online, or scope one out at your local home improvement store.




Ahh, the fence. The most obvious defense and one of the best. There are so many fence options that can cater to your ideal preference, privacy needs and budget. Chain link fencing is cheap and doesn’t forfeit lighting and air circulation. The downside of chain link fencing is that sometimes the style may not mesh well with a residential home, and there is still visibility into your yard from the street. If the visibility is a problem, you can always add a privacy screen as well. Wood and PVC fencing look great and block the view from the outside completely. This can get a little pricey, but if you want a stylish and effective option, wood and PVC fencing is the way to go. Your neighbor will probably think this is the most attractive option as well.


Now that you have a brief overview of what you need to know, it’s time to get to work! Don’t be overwhelmed, and don’t feel like you need to make all of these changes at one time. You’ll be surprised by what you can accomplish yourself once you are going in the right direction. Almost all of this privacy infrastructure is readily available at your local home improvement store. It’s best if you work from the inside out. For example, work on the privacy from your windows first then gradually work your way outside, ending with the landscaping. In a world where our personal lives are becoming more and more public, make sure your most personal place, your home, is fully under your control.