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Cost of Installing a Garden Gate

This article will help with your search for the perfect garden gate, a quick guide to installation and the costs involved. The cost of installing a garden gate can vary enormously depending on which design you choose, the gate's size and its material. Garden gate styles include wooden, Wrought iron, Sheet metal and automated gates.

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Introduction to Garden Gates

A well-designed garden gate can add value and kerb appeal to your home. A gate provides extra security for ease of mind, and there is a style to suit everyone, from impressive fully automated driveway gates to the humble yet practical wooden gate.

If you have the expertise you could, of course, attempt to fit a gate yourself, to reduce the garden gate cost. However, unless you are truly competent, you may well encounter difficulties.

Read on to find out what problems you may encounter, the average garden gate installation cost, garden gate prices, styles and everything in between.

This article is for you if you are considering installing or replacing a garden gate, whether as a DIY project or hiring a contractor to do the work for you.

A beautiful garden gate is an asset to your home; it is often the first thing visitors notice and can say a lot about you.

The style you choose can convey many things; whether you prefer wisteria festooned pergolas tumbling around your gate, or the clean, minimalist lines of an aluminium gate.

Whatever you choose, installing a gate on your property helps not only aesthetically but also practically by deterring intruders and keeping children and pets safe.

How Much Does It Cost to Install a Garden Gate?

Many variables affect this question, such as your choice of style, hard-wear, automation, labour, and so on. Gate installation prices vary depending on your preference.

The average rate of a handyman in the UK is between £100 – £200 per day.

Several factors will affect the final price, including the gate's size, the materials needed and where the gate is being fitted.

It's also worth noting that costs in cities such as London and more expensive areas of the country such as the Home Counties and the Cotswolds will be more expensive than the rest of the UK.

The cost to install a wooden gate will average around £400 with two concrete ed timber posts installed (not including labour). A wooden gate is a popular choice for both style and privacy. The cost depends on the size and style of the gate and whether it's hardwood or softwood.

A wooden gate will need regular maintenance, painting it with a wood stain or suitable paint (around twice a year) to avoid rotting, twisting and warping.

Closed boarded wooden gates will offer greater privacy but could offer greater concealment to a criminal in your back garden. Open boarded gates provide less privacy decreasing the chances for intruders to hide.

Installing a metal gate, attached to brickwork ( existing house) will cost around £175 plus labour. Although attractive, metal gates don't offer a great deal of privacy, unless they are made from solid sheets – which will be expensive.

To add automation to your driveway gates, you will be looking at around £750 plus labour costs, which will be around £150 per day.

Whatever style you choose, you may be guided by cost implications. Whilst a wooden gate may look more attractive if a matching wooden fence surrounds your garden, it can cost more to install than an elaborate metal gate.

Garden Gate Installation Cost

Type of Gate Average Cost
Fit a wooden garden gate and two concreted timber posts £400
Fit a metal gate to brickwork £175
Fit wooden driveway gates with concreted hardwood posts £750
Fit metal driveway gates & posts in an existing gap £350
Add automation to driveway gates £750
Handyman day rate £150 a day

Types of Garden Gate

Whilst some of the most popular gate designs are made of wood and have plants trailing from an overhead arch - the romantic ideal of a secret garden, other popular trends are for minimalist metal gates which enhance the entrance to a more modern property.

The clean, unfussy lines of a metal gate can be the cherry on the cake for some stylish homes.

Take time researching and choosing the gate that best meets your requirements and each type of gate's maintenance requirements. Carefully consider the position of your gate and regularly maintain it to keep it looking brand new.

A wooden gate will need a coat of varnish, paint or sealant every year. Gate hinges will need regular oiling and be kept clean to ensure they continue working properly.

If you opt for automatic gates, you will have to keep the mechanisms clean and protect it from pests. Metal gates will need regular washing and rust protection.

Electric Gates

Automatic gates or electric gates can add a touch of class to any home or business and are viewed as a status symbol. They can improve the security, privacy and accessibility of any location.

Prices are anywhere from £1,500 to £3,000 upwards for the raw materials and £500 to £1,000 upwards for the installation. You also need to consider maintenance costs, including annual system checks, remedial works and replacement parts.

Anti-rust treatments or reapplying any paint will also need to be considered. To reduce costs, review the manufacturer's guarantee and take out a maintenance plan, which is usually optional and cost around £150 per year.

To save money, avoid extensive groundworks by choosing visible motors and openers. Running costs for your automated gates will be negligible.

Electric gates costs Supply (+VAT) Install (+VAT) Supply and install (+VAT)
Swing gates 3m aluminium £1500+ £500+ £2,000+
Sliding gates 3m aluminium £2000+ £600+ £2600+
Bifold gates 3m aluminium £3000+ £1000+ £4,000+
Residential electric gates cost (driveway gate) £1,000+ £350+ £1,350+
Electric wooden gates cost £400-£3,000 £275-£1,050 £675-4,050

There are also additional costs you should take into account when budgeting for your project as you can see from the table below:

Additional automatic gate costs Average Cost
Automation and motors £300
Intercom £100
Additional groundworks £250-£500
Electric or other services to the gates £150
Maintenance costs per year £50

Wooden Gates

A wooden gate can create a beautiful entrance to your home, with a choice of many styles and types of wood. Depending on the materials and number of panels, a wooden gate can be one of the cheapest.

However, while wood can offer excellent, affordable and privacy, it does require frequent maintenance to keep it looking its best.

The average cost of wooden gates can range from £80 for the most basic to around £375 and upwards depending on the design you require.

Getting a carpenter or woodcarver involved will simply add to the cost but will, of course, produce a stunning end result. The labour cost is normally around £150 per day for installation.

Metal Gates

These can vary from the plainest metal sheeting to a far more elaborate designed affair. Blacksmiths are often commissioned to produce one-off gate designs and collaborate extensively with their clients during the design process.

The sky is the limit regarding costs if this is the avenue you wish to pursue. Decorative wrought iron gates are available off the peg and maybe a cheaper yet very attractive alternative.

You should also consider the following tips:

  • For security, you should place hinges to the inside of the gate.
  • If you are using a drop on, two-part hinges on metal gates, reverse one hinge so that you cannot lift the gate off.
  • On wooden gates, fit a good quality security hasp and staples one third up the gate and secure with good quality padlocks. Fit a good quality sliding bolt to the bottom of the gate to reinforce the structure.
  • Ensure any furniture on the post is well fitted and secured using strong fixings.
  • A shooting bolt and a good padlock is the simplest solution for metal gates.

What Does Garden Gate Installation Involve?

A well-chosen gate creates a unique feature and can offer privacy, security and highlight your style and personality.

Your property will be shielded from the street, and it will be harder for burglars and intruders to gain entry. Gates can also prevent children and pets from escaping from your garden and getting injured or lost.

If you simply want to replace an old, broken gate, location and replacement costs are important considerations. You may want to put the gate back in its original location, or you may want to re-locate it, depending upon your needs.

How Much Do Gates Cost?

How will you access your home, do you need space to manoeuvre any cars? Where will you and visitors park? If you choose a swinging gate, make sure it has room to open without hitting any car.

Will it swing open feely? Or will it catch and scrap your precious driveway? These are all valid consideration that you will need to address before starting your project.

Consider the angle of your driveway, its size, and whether it is on a slope as this could affect your new gate's operation. All of these things will affect the final cost of the installation.

Type of Gate

The size and materials needed for your gate will directly affect the price. The quality and security is also a significant factor, as a better quality gate will be more costly than simple, low-quality versions.


Difficult areas with limited accessibility will be more expensive to install. A new gate can greatly enhance the aesthetics, privacy and security of your home.

If your gate is higher than one metre and close to a road or a footpath or even adjacent to a road, you will need to apply for planning permission.

Installation involves conducting groundworks to ensure a solid foundation for the gate.

You will need help to install both the gate and foundations as it best practice not to undertake this job alone as there is a risk of injury and muscle strain through supporting heavy items such as the pillars and the gate itself. If replacing an old gate, make sure you measure correctly.

DIY Garden Gate Installation

Whilst you may consider yourself to be proficient, installing a garden gate might look simple enough, but it is not an easy DIY job. Before starting the project, consider the following:

Gates are heavy and often specialist equipment to install. It's best practice not to try and install the gate yourself. You will need help! Fitting this can be complex and challenging. If gates are not set up well, they can creak and be unbalanced.

You will need to employ the services on an electrician if you are fitting an electric gate. Again, do not attempt this without professional help; a qualified electrician can supply you with a certificate for your records.

If you are simply upgrading your gate as a DIY job, automation kits starting at £300 are available. However, you would still need to have experience and a certain skill level, and it is recommended that you hire a professional.

Whilst it is not mandatory to get a contractor to sign off on your DIY garden gate project, provided you have followed all the requirements and have not fallen foul of any planning permission, you may decide to, purely for peace of mind.

Installation Guide

To help you understand the process of installing a gate, take a look at this step by step guide.

Step 1

Gateposts should normally be about 100mm square and 610mm longer than the gate's height. Larger gates (over 1.2m high or wide) will require thicker posts and at least 760mm longer than the gate height.

Check the manufacturer's specifications before starting the job.

Wooden gateposts should be treated with preservative before installation before setting them into concrete to avoid deterioration.

Step 2

Some movement or play may occur when you try to screw the hinges to the gate, making them difficult to position accurately. If this is the case, simply adjust them after the posts are set.

You will find that fitting will be easier if you only use two holding screws per hinge while it's still lying flat. It's a good idea to wait until you've hung your gate before fitting the latch.

Step 3

If your gate posts aren't weathered simply cut them at an angle of 20 degrees from the top of the post.

This will create a slope so that rainwater can run off and doesn't pool on a flat surface, which would eventually lead to considerable deterioration and the need for replacement.

Step 4

Continue to cut the line straight down the face of the post and saw neatly along with it. Paint the cut edge with wood preservative to preserve its integrity.

Step 5

Once you've decided the direction, you want your gate to open, simply lay it, face down on the ground. Place the posts with their tops higher than the top of the gate.

Allow a 5mm gap each side of the gate so it can open and close easily. Raise the gate slightly, to allow it to sit in line with the gateposts before finally fixing it.

Step 6

Place hinges into position at the back of the gate, then mark the screw positions and drill one pilot hole. Check the drill bit is the correct size then drill the rest of the holes.

Step 7

Screw the hinges in place with galvanised screws. You can wait until you've hung the gate before fitting them and the latch.

Step 8

Drill holes for the latch screws, and screw the latch into place. Allow a small gap between gate and post.

Step 9

Brace the gate and posts to make sure the construction is solid. Mark the position of the post holes.

Step 10

Dig your post holes leaving a 50mm clearance gap under the gate so it can open freely. Then dig a trench between the post holes before filling it with concrete.

This will prevent the gate's weight from pulling in the posts, allowing it to stay sturdy and secure.

Step 11

Hold your gate and posts in position with timber props. Then concrete the posts into the ground. Remember to slope the surface downwards to keep water away.

Step 12

The concrete will need to set for 48 hours before you remove the props and brace, to ensure that it is fully set.

Painting a Gate

Gates should then be painted with a minimum of 2 coats of high-quality exterior-grade paint before being sited outside. If possible, gates should be painted in a clean, dry and dust-free environment.

Fences & Gates Planning Permission

You will need planning permission for gates above two metres, or above one metre if close to a road or a footpath adjacent to a road.

You will not need to apply for planning permission to take down a fence, wall, or gate or alter, maintain or improve an existing fence or gate if you don't increase its height. However, you might need planning permission to take down a fence or gate in a conservation area.

Planning permission is needed for any new fence, gate or wall over 2m in height.

Potential Problems and Pitfalls

There are various problems and pitfalls you need to consider such as:

  • If your gate is next to a footpath or road and measures more than one metre in height, you might need to apply for planning permission, but in most cases, planning permission is not required (unless it is a listed property). There are some common problems and disadvantages that homeowners encounter when installing a new gate in the garden or driveway.
  • If your home is a listed building, you may need planning permission before starting work on your boundary fence or wall.
  • Speak to your local planning authority to see if there are any restrictions or need planning permission.
  • You may find it tricky to find a gate that's the correct size for your opening. In this case, you made need to commission a craftsman to make a bespoke gate.
  • Electric gates are expensive if you're working on a tight budget.
  • If you have children or pets, there may be concerns of them harming themselves against the gate.
  • Often the existing walls you want to insert the gate into are in poor repair and may need replacing.
  • Where the gate needs to swing the ground may be sloping and will catch as the gate swings open.
  • Wooden gates can crack or split open if the gate is exposed too much to the elements. Make sure you angle the tops of the gate to enable water to run off.
  • You may not want a padlock, but a key as padlocks can be fiddly, especially in wet weather.

As far as planning permission goes, no planning permission is needed if you wish to alter, maintain, improve, install or takedown an existing fence, wall or gate.

However, if it is located next to a road used by vehicles (or the footpath of such a road), it must not be more than a metre in height (from ground level).

You might need permission to take down a fence, wall or gate if your property is within a conservation area.

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Sam J

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