Building a deck is a home improvement project that can add a lot of value to your property. However, it’s important to understand that there are other costs associated with the project as well. These include a permit, materials, labor, and other add-ons.
Cost of Materials
One of the most important factors that impact your deck installation cost is the materials you choose. The cost of the materials for a deck can vary dramatically depending on what you want the deck to look like, how much maintenance it will require and whether or not you want to include features.
The most significant cost associated with a new deck is the material. The average deck costs between $600 and $7,600, depending on the materials used. The most popular decking materials are pressure-treated wood and composite decking. Wood decks tend to be cheaper than composite decks. However, wood is more susceptible to rot and mold growth.
Other costs associated with a deck project include stairs and railings. Stairs usually cost between $200 and $300, while railings run about $26 per linear foot. Another optional accessory is lighting, which can be both functional and decorative. Deck lights typically cost $8 to $30 each, while post lighting can be more expensive. Decks can also be enhanced with a variety of other features, including a hot tub, fire pit, grilling area, and built-in seating.
Typically, the most common choice of material is pressure-treated wood. This wood is treated chemically to better withstand rot, insects and weathering, but it still requires yearly maintenance in the form of sanding and staining. Cedar and redwood are other popular choices of wood for decks, but they tend to be more expensive than pressure-treated wood. If you want your deck to be more luxurious, you can also opt for exotic hardwoods such as ipe and tigerwood, but these are much more expensive than other options.
The type of foundation that your deck requires can also affect the final cost. If you need a concrete slab, the cost will be significantly higher than if you use a post-and-beam system.
Another important factor to consider is the size of your deck. A bigger deck will be more costly than a smaller one, but it can add value to your home. Finally, if you are planning to build stairs or railings, these will increase the overall cost of your project.
Stairs in particular can be a major expense, but they are necessary to get people in and out of the deck and can make your deck more functional and enjoyable. Railings can also be a significant expense, but they can enhance your deck’s aesthetic.
Once the materials are purchased, labor is the next biggest cost. Contractors typically charge by the hour or by the square foot, but the price will depend on the complexity of your project. For example, if your deck is elevated, you will need to have it built on piles or supports and this can be more difficult than a standard ground-level deck.
Cost of Labor
When you build a deck, the cost of labor is influenced by several factors. First, the size of the deck affects the amount of materials and time needed to install it. Second, if you’re replacing an existing deck, the cost of tearing it down will be added to the final project costs. Finally, any design features you add will also affect the price of your deck. For example, adding a hot tub or a pergola will increase the cost of the project.
Whether you choose a wood, composite, or vinyl deck will also influence the cost of your project. In general, wood decks cost more than composite or vinyl, but they are long-lasting and require less maintenance. If you want to reduce the cost of your deck, consider using a pressure-treated wood. These types of wood are resistant to rot and insects, which will save you money in the long run.
Another factor that influences the cost of building a deck is its location. Some localities have regulations about the height of a deck, and you may need to obtain a permit before starting construction. In addition, you will need to pay for site preparation, which includes removing grass and sod. Also, if you are building a raised deck, you will need to install footings for stability and safety.
Once the foundation is set, you can begin to frame the deck. The joists will be attached to the posts with galvanized fasteners or screws. The joists should be spaced evenly apart and be perpendicular to the house framing. Then, the ledger board will be anchored to the house framing with flashing. The flashing will prevent water from seeping behind the deck.
Once the frame is built, you can begin to lay down the decking boards. It is recommended to stagger the seams between deck boards for a more attractive look. You will also need to install railings and stairs, which will add to the overall cost of your deck. Remember to budget for lighting and other accessories, as well. These features will increase the resale value of your home and make your deck more enjoyable.
Cost of Permits
A permit is required for most construction projects, including decks. Permit fees can range from $50 to $500, depending on the type of work and where you live. The cost of a permit for residential construction is typically lower than the cost of a commercial permit.
Once your deck is completed, it will require regular maintenance. It’s important to protect your investment by applying a wood preservative every couple of years. This will help prevent rot, mildew, and water damage. Additionally, it’s important to clean your deck regularly and stain it every year or two.
While it is possible to build a deck yourself, this is typically not recommended. Unless you have experience in deck construction, it’s best to hire a professional contractor. They will have the expertise and knowledge of local building codes that are necessary to complete the job correctly. Besides, hiring a professional will save you time and money in the long run.
Cost of Equipment
The type of equipment needed for deck installation will vary depending on the size and complexity of the project. For example, a professional contractor will likely use a crane and a dump truck to get rid of the excavated soil. They will also use a high-powered saw for cutting the lumber and fasteners. A carpenter’s level is another important piece of equipment, as it helps ensure that the framing and deck boards are flat.
The foundation of your deck is one of the most important components, and it can add up to a significant portion of the total cost. Getting it wrong can compromise the structural integrity of your entire deck. For this reason, you should always hire a professional to do the job.
Depending on your location, the type of yard you have and the local building codes, the piers or footings for your deck may need to be made from concrete or poured-in-place. The piers/footings should be placed at the specified locations and at the appropriate depth. The depth should be at least below the frost line, and in some areas, it might need to be deeper.
If your deck is built close to your house, you will need to anchor it to the house frame using bolts (or lag screws). In some locales, this is required by code. If you have a freestanding deck, you will need to use a special attachment system that attaches the deck to the rim joist or studs under the siding of your home.
Once the foundation is in place, it’s time to start building the frame of your deck. Start by installing the rim joists. Make sure to install them with the crown side up. Joists should be spaced every 12 to 16 inches, according to your drawings and local building codes.
Next, install the beams. Make sure to use a good quality beam fastener and block, which prevents the joists from twisting over time. Finish the framing by installing the joist hangers, which are hardware-specific nails or screws that connect the rim joists to the ledger.
If you’re interested in a deck installation, contact us at Detroit Construction Solutions. We would be happy to provide a free estimate and answer any questions that might come up. We would love nothing more than to work with you in relieving the stress of your project needs. To learn more about your options or to get a quote from us, contact us at 586-443-6199 or fill out our contact form here.