By Gene and Katie Hamilton
When you have something to hide near or attached to your house, consider building a lattice enclosure, an attractive way to conceal an old oil or gas tank or to store large garbage cans. Plastic lattice panels create good-looking cover-ups, and the material is durable and maintenance-free. You'll find it in garden, home and lumber centers sold in white, green, gray and almond, in 4-foot-by-8-foot panels and molded U-shaped channels that frame the panels using screws. The material can be easily cut with a handsaw, so it's a good first-time carpentry project for a beginner.
A carpenter will charge $400 to build an 8-foot high, L-shaped enclosure that measures 4-feet-by-8-feet, which includes labor and material. You can buy the materials for $140 and build it yourself and save 65 percent. The materials include the lattice panels, channels, screws, crushed stone and 4-by-4 rot-resistant lumber for the three posts. Digging the post holes is the most strenuous part of the job; consider renting a post hole digger to make the job easier. For tools, you need a measuring tape, handsaw, electric drill and a shovel. Use non-rusting or stainless steel screws and pre-drill all the holes.
If you have an open area around the foundation of your house, consider using this material to enclose it. The open weave design allows ventilation and is an attractive alternative to siding.
Now you know the average cost to build a lattice enclosure, which includes the labor and material, and what’s involved, so you can decide to do it yourself or hire a contractor. Don’t forget to adjust the cost to where you live by adding your ZIP Code.