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CostHelper > Home and Garden  > Driveways, Pools & Outdoor Living > Wood Deck

Wood Deck Cost


How Much Does a Wood Deck Cost?

 
low costPressure-Treated Wood Deck: $2,560-$16,000+ for 16'x20'average costRedwood or Cedar Deck: $6,400-$25,600+ for 16'x20'high costHardwood Deck: $12,800-$25,600+ for 16'x20'
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A deck provides room for outdoor entertaining or relaxing, and can create the feeling of more living space in a house without the expense of a room addition. Wood decks are typically built with pressure-treated lumber (usually yellow pine), cedar, redwood or hardwood.

Typical costs:

  • A pressure-treated wood deck can cost $8-$50 a square foot ($2,560-$16,000 for 16'x20') for labor and materials, but averages about $25-$35 a square foot ($8,000-$11,200 for 16'x20'). PT wood is typically the least expensive, most widely available and most popular decking material; with maintenance, a PT wood deck can last up to 15 years.
  • A cedar deck can cost $20-$75 or more a square foot ($6,400-$24,000 for 16'x20'). Cedar has a natural resistance to insects and rot; a glowing color and good-looking straight grains; can be left untreated for a naturally weathered look; and typically lasts 20-30 years.
  • A redwood deck can cost $30-$75 or more a square foot ($9,600-$24,000 for 16'x20'). Redwood has a natural resistance to insects and rot; a warm color and good-looking straight grains; is fairly easy to work with; and lasts 15-30 years with maintenance.
  • A hardwood deck can cost $40-$80 or more a square foot ($12,800-$25,600 for 16'x20'). Hardwoods are typically considered more beautiful and more durable than other lumber, but are also more expensive. With maintenance, a hardwood deck can last 30-50 years.
  • Factors affecting the cost of a wood deck include the height; shape; number of levels; decking pattern; railing length, material and style; steps, stairways or landings; and built-in benches, planters, lighting or other features. Lumber prices can change daily, affecting the total cost.
What should be included:
  • Home Depot provides instructions for a ground-level deck[1] (16-24 hours of work) or a multi-level deck[2] (116-132 hours).
Additional costs:
  • A deck often requires a building permit (depending on local regulations and the size and height of the structure). Most contractors coordinate any permits and inspections, but the homeowner usually pays the fees, which can be nominal or pricey, depending on location.
  • A permit requires detailed plans and drawings, showing that the deck will be structurally sound and meet or exceed local building codes. Many contractors include the cost of a plan in their bid. DecksUSA.com[3] sells a CD-ROM for $19.95 with more than 350 designs; DeckPlans.com[4] offers free plans online, listed by categories.
  • Once the deck is completed, contact your homeowners' insurance company; tell them how much it cost to build the new deck, and they will determine the cost to add the deck to the existing policy.
  • Depending on local laws, after the project is complete the local tax assessor may calculate how much the property has increased in value; the exact amount of any tax increase varies significantly by location and the value of the addition.
  • A wood deck should be AA home.costhelper.com/cleaning-deck.html>cleaned annually ($0.25-$1.50 or more a square foot) and might require sealing ($1-$5 a square foot) or staining ($0.50-$7 a square foot) every 1-2 years, depending on the type of wood and its exposure to the elements.
Discounts:
  • Do-it-yourself construction is possible, especially for a relatively simple square or rectangular deck at ground level. This Old House estimates that a simple, ground-level 10'x16' deck[5] of PT wood with no railings is of moderate to hard difficulty; takes 4-6 days of work (plus a week for concrete to cure); and typically costs $800-$1,000.
Shopping for a wood deck:
  • The Lowe's Deck Designer[6] lets consumers pick sample decks or create a custom project.
  • A deck can be installed by a handyman (or do-it-yourselfer) with strong carpentry and design skills, a landscaping contractor, a general building contractor (who may sub it out to a specialist) or a decking contractor. Ask family, friends, neighbors or the staff at local hardware or home improvement centers for recommendations. For larger projects, search for members of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry[7] who list "deck contractor" as a specialty. Ask for and check references from satisfied customers; look for complaints filed with the Better Business Bureau[8] ; and confirm that the company is properly insured and licensed[9] .
  • Ask for a detailed explanation of the work to be done and the materials that will be used. If there is an existing deck, bids should include demolition/debris removal. HGTVremodels.com lists questions to ask a decking professional[10] .
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External Resources:
  1.  www.homedepot.com/webapp/catalog/servlet/ContentView?pn=Building_Ground-level&storeId=1...
  2.  www.homedepot.com/webapp/catalog/servlet/ContentView?pn=Building_Multi-level&storeId=10...
  3.  www.decksusa.com/ordercd.htm
  4.  deckplans.com/free-deck-plans
  5.  www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/how-to/intro/0,,262821,00.html
  6.  www.lowes.com/cd_Deck+Designer+Planner_733683095_?cm_cr=Decking-_-Web+Activity-_-Deckin...
  7.  www.nari.org/search/address/
  8.  www.bbb.org/us/Find-Business-Reviews/
  9.  www.contractors-license.org/
  10.  www.hgtvremodels.com/outdoors/hiring-a-decking-professional/index.html
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