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Behind the Brand: Modular Walls

22 Aug 2022

With a background of over 30 years composite panel manufacturing experience, Modular Walls is the leading producer of cost-effective acoustic boundary walls and fences. Which is why we’ve chose to use their walls for our recent project for the Barefoot Bay Villa in Byron Bay. We had the chance to ask the inventor of the product, Nick Holden, some questions about the company to get a behind the scenes look. Read on below to find out what we discussed…

Tell us a bit about yourself/(yourselves) and how you got into the business.

In 2003, I was refused council approval for a rendered brick front wall; rather than taking this as the final answer, I took this on as a challenge. I created a product that emulated the high-end aesthetic of a rendered brick wall, yet satisfied council requirements; and thus, the first Modular Wall was born!

From this single invention followed an international industry disruption; ModularWalls has since experienced rapid growth, quickly becoming an Australian manufacturing success story. We’ve now established a national footprint with a suite of new and disruptive residential and commercial products, with emerging exports to NZ, the US and now with a manufacturing plant in the UK.

Why do you think your business has been successful so far?

I truly believe our quest for continual innovation and investment in R&D has never allowed us to get stagnant or complacent; that, and never taking no for an answer!

As Founder and now Head of Innovation, I’m dedicated to the improvement and evolution of every facet of the business; in leading the market through cutting-edge IT processes, lean manufacturing practices, state-of-the-art custom-built machinery and only employing staff with drive and a shared passion.

Why should someone choose ModularWalls for their outdoor fencing? What makes your brand unique to others?

Before us, you either had an affordable option (timber or metal) or an aesthetically pleasing (but expensive) Masonry or blockwork option; there was no in-between. But ModularWalls is all about making high-end, high-performance products more accessible.

Times have changed; so has fencing. Our products have been specifically designed for the modern Australian home, with modern challenges and design aspirations. ModularWalls products have been designed and manufactured in Australia, for modern Australian conditions. Compared to other fence and wall alternatives, ModularWalls delivers stronger aesthetics and superior acoustic capabilities, are faster to install and easier to maintain.

With the ability to integrate retaining, lighting, decorative slats or infills, and to accommodate paint, tiles or cladding, it’s is never ‘just a wall’; it is a revolution. 

What’s the process behind choosing ModularWalls fencing for an outdoor space?

It’s all pretty simple and tailored around what you want. We have a range of products that all offer different aesthetic variations, so that you can create your perfect wall design, and offer two installation options; DIY or Professional Install.

If you choose DIY, you can save on labour costs and receive turnkey Head Office assistance. WE help you with everything from advice on material choices and site planning, to 3D drawings and installation guides, to 7-day phone support – we’re with you every step of the way. The systems themselves were designed for the DIYer; you simply the dig holes, concrete in the posts, slide in your panels and apply the finish of your choice – it’s that easy!

If you choose Professional Install, you have access to our national Trade Partner Network; we’ll put you in contact with a skilled, reliable Tradie in your area that we trust to quote and install our product correctly and efficiently. You’ll receive a free, no-obligation quote and have the opportunity to discuss your options and preferences with a qualified, experienced and skilled tradesperson.

What’s the single most important thing to look at when it comes to fencing choice when designing an outdoor space?

I guess the first thing you need to ask yourself is, what is the main challenge I want to overcome? Is it noise reduction? Privacy? Security? Aesthetic harmony with your home? Levelling sloping land?

Once you answer that, it’ll guide you in prioritising what’s most important for your fence design

What are some other tips you can give someone when choosing a fence for their outdoor space?

Never look past ModularWalls; it is the ultimate allrounder!

But more seriously; don’t cheap out. Some people spend up to 1mill on a property and then they cheap out on the fencing; how would you feel is Mona Lisa was in a Kmart frame? You’re not just fencing your garden, you’re framing it; choose something that will stand the test of time, that will improve property value and that will ultimately harmonise with all the thought you put into your beautiful home!

And always ask the experts; most often, our Head Office will know how to provide the perfect solution for whatever unique challenge you’re facing! Since we’re manufacturers, we can customise to suit your project needs and will usually find a way to overcome whatever challenge is int eh way of you achieving your dream outcome.

What are the best fence options for someone who is after a fence that reduces noise?

Either our SlimWall or VogueWall fencing systems provide one of the best deals on the market; you’re getting a commercial-grade acoustic solution, with residential aesthetics, at an incredibly cost-effective price point. Reaching up to 3m high and offering a noise reduction of around 25dB; that’s a whopping fourfold reduction in audible noise.

Our SlimWall and VogueWall has been our most popular products in terms on noise barriers and acoustic fencing, both residentially and commercially; it’s been repeatedly chosen by the fast-food giants like McDonald’sand KFCto attenuate drive-thru noise, as well as aged care facilities like Bupa or large-scale community developers, such as Mirvac, who need to protect residents from road noise.

What’s the biggest design trend you’ve seen so far this year when it comes to outdoor fencing?

Lots are shrinking, houses are getting closer and residential spaces are increasingly colliding with commercial zones or arterial roads. As such, privacy is one of the biggest lifestyle trends, by far; our world is increasingly becoming more and more demanding, so having a private outdoor oasis amongst the ever-expanding metropolis has become a huge factor for our mental and emotional wellbeing. The old 1.8m metal fence just isn’t cutting it anymore; we’re seeing more and more interest in our taller height options (2.1m, 2.4m, and 3m).

Not to mention acoustic privacy; a tall privacy screen made of metal or timber might visually screen you from your neighbours, but still leaves you quite exposed when it comes to noise…but with an acoustically-rated privacy screen, you’re getting that added level of serenity and security, which can make a huge impact on how you feel in your own backyard.

Aesthetically, design trends have seen a swing toward dark fence colours rather than the crisp white canvases of a few years ago; deep charcoals and even black fences are creating dramatic borders that really add an architectural edge and offer a great backdrop for gardens. There’s also been a growing focus around outdoor lighting; to be able to offer a product that can seamlessly integrate wall lights within the post has been a big advantage to those wanting to get the most use out of their outdoor spaces.

What are your personal favourite fencing options when it comes to ModularWalls outdoor fencing?

That’s like being asked which your favourite child is…

I think what I love most is the versatility to do whatever you want and truly customise to your heart’s content; you can effectively extend your home all the way to your fence and have it be a positive feature, rather than feeling like you need to screen your fence off for your outdoor area to be attractive.

Integrated retaining is also one of the most innovative features of our fencing; you no longer need a separate, standalone retaining solution that takes up more land space, time and money; you no longer need to hire two different trades; you no longer need to deal with the curse of being on the ‘low side’ and having the ugly patchwork effect of a separate retaining wall underneath your fence. Now, you can integrate a retaining wall straight into your fence to create a single, seamless solution; you’d never know you were retaining anything!

You can explore more of Modular Wall’s products on their website.

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