Inexpensive Driveway Gate Options For Every Style And Budget

Driveway gates can be expensive, especially if it’s for a wide driveway. But there are a few ways you can lower the cost. 

Here are some cheap driveway gate ideas that might work for your home. Keep in mind that, depending on why you are getting a gate, these ideas may not be suitable. For instance, you can’t really go cheap if you want a high security gate. 

But if you are installing a driveway gate to keep out trespassers, deter occasional burglars, keep your curious pet from leaving the yard, or simply for aesthetics, then there are plenty of budget friendly gate ideas. 

How Much Does A Driveway Gate Cost?

How Much Does A Driveway Gate Cost?

How much you spend on a driveway gate depends on several factors including the type of gate (metal, wood etc.), how big the gate is, gate design (an intricate design will cost more), and whether it’s a manual or automatic gate. 

It also matters if you are getting a custom designed gate or buying a prefabricated one off the shelf and if you are installing the gate yourself or hiring a pro to do it. 

Also remember that costs vary by region. 

I recommend requesting quotes from different companies. Make sure the quotes include the cost of the gate plus installation. Compare at least 3-4 quotes to get the best price. 

If you plan to install the gate yourself, then it’s just an easy matter of comparing driveway gate prices. 

Cost of Metal Driveway Gates

Overall, many homeowners spend between $4,000 and $5,000 on a new metal gate that’s about 12 feet wide. This includes the cost of the gate plus installation. 

If you have an extra-wide 14-24 feet wide driveway, you could spend up to $10,000 or more on a metal gate. 

Minus installation costs, a new prefabricated 10-12ft metal gate costs between $2,000 and $3,000. You could probably less if you buy the materials and weld the gate together yourself. 

Cost of Wood Driveway Gates?

Wooden driveway gates are considerably cheaper. You can get a basic 10-12 ft wooden gate for about $1,000. With installation, it will cost you $1,500-$2,000. 

But costs can be a lot higher depending on where you live. Lumbar prices have shot up in some areas, leading to skyrocketing costs for things like wooden gates, fences, sheds and decks. 

So don’t be surprised if you get a $4,000+ quote for your wooden gate. 

You’ll also pay more if you want a metal framed wooden gate. And this is what some contractors will recommend to reduce the risk of sagging. 

Cost of Vinyl Driveway Gates

If you are on a tight budget, get a vinyl gate. They cost as little as $300 with even larger ones costing under $1,000. 

And since vinyl gates are lightweight, you can save even more money by installing it yourself. 

For a couple thousand bucks, you could have a vinyl fence and gate installed. 

Cheap Driveway Gate Ideas

Here are some ideas for getting a cheap driveway gate. 

1. Choose A Cheaper Material Like Vinyl or Wood 

The type of material is the biggest factor determining the cost of a driveway gate. As we’ve discussed above, metal gates are generally the most expensive, with prices starting at $2,000 just for the gate. 

On the upside, metal gates provide better security. They are also stronger, last longer and can withstand bad weather and fluctuating temperatures. 

But if you are on a budget, you’ll have to settle for a cheaper material. 

Wood is the best alternative if you want an affordable driveway gate that still provides a measure of security. 

But confirm prices before you settle for a wooden gate. Depending on the cost of lumbar in your area, the size of the gate, and the design you want, a wooden get can get pricey. 

Installation can be especially expensive since wooden gates tend to sag more easily. So contractors charge more to prevent this, especially if you are getting a wide 12ft+ gate. 

The cost of thicker posts, a deeper foundation, more concrete for the posts, and sturdier framing can end up making the gate more expensive than a comparable metal gate. 

If you really want to spend as little money as possible on a driveway gate, get a vinyl gate. This is, essentially, a plastic gate. 

Most homeowners install vinyl gates simply for aesthetics or to keep a pet from getting out of the yard. If you want a gate for home security, then your best choices are wood or metal.   

2. Make it Smaller 

After the type of material, size is the next biggest factor in determining the cost of a driveway gate. This includes both the width and height of the gate. 

The cost of a driveway gate increases exponentially the wider the gate is. Not only do you have to pay for the extra materials used to make the gate, you’ll also have to spend more on thicker and stronger support posts or columns. 

And if you plan to install an automatic gate opener, one that can handle a large and heavy gate will be pricier. 

To save costs, get a driveway gate that’s only slightly wider than your driveway. If you are planning to build a new driveway, you can make it narrower so that you also get a smaller and cheaper gate. 

For instance, instead of a 12 feet gate, a 9-10 feet wide gate is enough for most cars, trucks and SUVs.

Another way you can make a driveway gate cheaper is making it shorter. The average height of driveway gates is 6 feet.

But you can make your gate shorter to save money. If you want a cheaper driveway gate that’s still tall enough to keep out burglars, 5 feet is a good height.  

If you are getting a driveway gate for aesthetics, you can go down to 3-4 feet. A 3 feet high picket style driveway gate is a lot cheaper compared to a regular 6 footer. 

Tip: If you are getting a driveway gate to keep pets from getting out, you may have no choice but to get a high 5-6 foot gate. Depending on your dog’s breed, it may be able to jump over a short 3-5 foot fence. But most dogs cannot jump over a 6 foot gate. 

3. Opt For A Manual Gate 

An automatic gate opener will add between $300 and $3,000 to your driveway gate budget. The wider and heavier the gate, the pricier the right opener will be. 

Leaving out the opener and opting for a manually operated gate could lower your costs quite a bit. On the downside, you have to sometimes contend with rain, snow or cold when opening the gate. 

Tip: If you really want an automatic gate without spending a lot of money, install a single swing driveway gate. An automatic single swing gate opener is cheaper compared to double swing gate and sliding gate openers. 

4. Consider Building or Installing the Gate Yourself  

The most money-saving hack for a driveway gate is building it yourself. If you know your way around tools and building stuff out of wood or metal, you can make your own driveway gate. 

The cost of the materials will be a lot cheaper than buying a complete driveway gate. 

DIYing a metal gate is probably out of the question for most homeowners. Welding together a gate requires a lot of experience. 

But if you have the tools and skills, go ahead and give it a try. Here’s a video of a DIY 15ft metal swing gate. 

A wooden gate is easier to build. You can even get some free plans online. 

The trick with wooden gates is ensuring it has proper support to keep it from sagging. Pay attention to the gate framing (sturdy frame plus bracing) and support posts (they should be thick, set deep into the ground, and set with concrete).

If building a driveway gate from scratch is too much, consider just doing the installation part yourself. Buy a ready made gate online or at a local store, then install it yourself to save on labor.  

This can knock a few hundred to a few thousand dollars off your budget. 

5. Keep The Design Simple 

An intricate design will make your driveway gate more expensive since it takes more time, skills and probably special tools to create unique gate designs.

For instance, a Victorian style wrought iron gate will cost you more compared to a simple steel gate with horizontal or vertical slats. 

If the gate looks a bit boring, you can deck it out with hanging flowers/plants, or put up lights on it to make it more interesting. You can also paint it a unique color or multiple colors. 

Final Thoughts 

Getting a cheap driveway gate is all about compromise. You can certainly save money on a cheaper gate, but you have to compromise on things like level of security, size, and design. 

2 thoughts on “Inexpensive Driveway Gate Options For Every Style And Budget”

    • There are a great many options for buying second hand stuff, and if you are looking for a cheaper alternative to new then this is a great idea. Just make sure that you check the gate is structurally sound, and that it is the right size for your driveway, before you get it.


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