October 4, 2019

How Much Does It Cost to Build a Deck

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Decks could add value to your house. But how much would it cost to build a deck yourself? And do you need a permit? Read on for the answers.

How Much Does a Deck Cost?

A 300–400 sq. ft. deck made from quality wood or composite costs an average of $35.00/per square foot. But the cost varies depending on the options you choose. These include:

Size
If you want a deck larger than 300 or 400 sq. ft., you'll increase the cost per square foot. The price will depend on the amount and type of support that the deck needs. Oddly shaped or oversized decks tend to increase in price at a much higher rate per square foot.

Design
If you are looking for an intricate deck design, decorative flooring, or amenities such as benches or built-in planters, it will increase the cost accordingly.

Materials
Pressure-treated wood is the least expensive material used in deck-building, but there are other choices. Higher grades of wood offer a better look for more money. Composite and PVC cost even more but require less maintenance.

If you choose a less expensive material, such as pressure treated wood, you'll likely have to pay for regular maintenance including:

  • Annual cleaning
  • Staining
  • Resealing
  • Repairs for warping
  • Removal of mold or mildew

Additional Expenses

Building a deck often requires special preparation, which can lead to higher costs. Some of the most common additional expenses include:

Leveling the Land
If you didn't already have a deck in the area, you may need to pay to ensure that the deck is level and safe.

Old Deck Removal
Professionals charge an average of $500–$1,000 for deck removal, including disposal of the materials.

Installation of a Foundation
If you can't have a free-floating deck, there will be extra costs for installing a concrete foundation.

Rails or Stairs
The height of your deck and the number of stairs/handrails necessary for safety will affect the cost of the deck.

Staining, Sealing, and UV Blocking
These services can increase the cost of installing your deck. You can choose to opt out to save money.

Permit Costs
The exact cost will vary by county, but on average, a building permit costs $394—$1,843.

Taxes and Insurance
Since a deck will increase the value of your home, you will also see an increase in property taxes and home insurance. Before building, you can contact your insurance agent and tax assessor to see how much the increase will be.

Special features can also bump up the price of your deck. Common features include:

  • Hot tub
  • Pergola/Gazebo
  • Lighting
  • Electronics
  • Built-in grill

Bottom Line

Adding a deck can add aesthetic appeal, value, and function to the exterior of your home. Shop around for the right materials and the best contractor for your deck.

While $35 per square foot is the average, you may pay more or less, depending on your preference. Knowing your budget and vision for your deck can help you plan.

More from CreditDonkey:


Average Cost to Build a House


How Much to Buy a House


Buying Your First Home

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