“My house is my fortress,” Russians like to repeat, and they build higher fences around private property so that not a single thief gets through, not a single curious glance seeps through. But in Europe and the USA, there is a different picture: almost everywhere neat houses stand either without any fences at all, or with purely symbolic, rather decorative ones.
Courage, recklessness, economy? Let's try to figure out the real reasons.
1. Feeling safe
Russians, as a rule, feel at ease only when they can stand up for themselves. A vague threat is seen in unfamiliar surroundings (criminal reports only confirm fears), there is no unconditional trust in law enforcement agencies. It turns out that you need to protect yourself on your own, including with the help of locks and fences. For Europeans, the basic sense of security is reinforced by external factors: the crime rate is lower, loyalty to the police is higher, relations between neighbors are, if not friendly, then trusting. And if thieves do attack, in many countries the law allows owners to defend themselves by all available means.
2. Respect for private property
Russian dacha wars are a separate universe with intrigues, disputes and scandals. Either a neighbor inadvertently chop off a piece of someone else's land, or he will build a barn without observing the prescribed distance to the adjacent plot, and the fence is needed here as a reliable limiter, a clear boundary between “ours” and “yours”. In the West, an ordinary driveway often serves as such a boundary: firstly, they respect the right to private property, and secondly, they value their own peace of mind and once again they will not climb on the rampage. And if necessary, they will try to sue the negligent neighbor. And they will judge.
3. Access for emergency services
If the houses are located close to each other, and a fire starts in one of them, the flame will quickly spread to neighboring buildings. Firefighters must work quickly, for this they need to get as close as possible to the source of fire, which the fence can interfere with. The same applies to the police: the entrance doors in the US and Europe are often “cardboard”, it will not be difficult to knock them out, but the high fence will become a more serious obstacle. Unhindered access is also needed for utility workers who check the meters, which are usually installed on the street here.
Also, a string of high fences spoils the view of the street, because it is much more pleasant to look at houses with well-groomed plots than at deaf faceless walls.
4. Practicality and aesthetics
Many Europeans build houses with adjoining garages, and if there is a fence, the gate will have to be opened twice. The inhabitants of Scandinavia appreciate every ray of sunshine so much that they refuse not only high fences, but even blackout curtains on the windows. Building materials are not cheap, and prudent owners prefer to spend money not on fences, but on surveillance and alarm cameras that can protect no worse.
And a string of high fences spoils the view of the street, because it is much more pleasant to look at houses with well-groomed plots than at deaf faceless walls. By the way, fences are still installed in the backyards so that playing children do not run out into the street, and adults relaxing on a barbecue or by the pools do not worry about privacy.
What else to read on the topic
Why do Europeans often cook on vacation, while ours like to go to a restaurant
Why Americans don’t take off their shoes at home: 4 reasons, 3 exceptions and 2 reservations
Why it’s not customary in the USA and Europe to leave children inherit apartments or houses?
5. Love for nature
One of the countries where you almost never see fences is Finland with its “every person's right to nature.” Here, at the legislative level, both the need to protect the environment and the ability to move freely in the countryside, put up tents in other people's plots, fish, pick berries and mushrooms are spelled out. At the same time, it is forbidden to interfere with the owners, camp too close to the houses, or loiter directly in the yards. Similar rules apply in Norway: nature needs care, not restrictions. ru/sized/f550x700/e6/3f/e63fh12dn8gggs088googg48o.jpg” media=”(max-width: 549px)”>