Gorgeous and shiny decks give homeowners a reason to congregate outside, get together with family and knock back a beer or two. Decks are the perfect compliment to any summer or fall activity.
Perhaps the most advantageous aspect of a deck is that you can build it on your own and save a ton of money. Overall, the average cost of building a deck is $6,148, but this includes professional installation, as well as all materials that go into it.
As always, the total cost to build a deck unique to your home depends on a variety of factors including type of wood, design, labor, location and size. Below, I will discuss all the costs that go into building, repairing and sealing a deck.
All Decks Start with Design
Your chosen design will play a major role in the overall cost. Even if you’re building the deck yourself, we highly recommend you reach out to a professional deck builder for architectural plans. Being in the business for years, deck pros know what designs work in what settings.
As expected, square or rectangle decks are cheaper than custom decks with multiple levels or curves. Surprisingly, the difference between the two can be as high as $5,000. Additionally, you should always consider your long-term plans. While a deck addition can increase the value of your home, it can also become a financial burden if major repairs are needed down the road.
The major costs of installing a deck will come from the materials. Generally speaking, materials could take up as much as 90% of the total budget if you hire a professional. However, homeowners should know that some deck contractors are able to get discounts on lumber and other building supplies because they buy in bulk. Even an avid DIYer would be hard-pressed to get similar discounts.
Nonetheless, as you will see at the bottom of our deck and porch cost estimators, we have researched the average material costs for some of the most common decks. See them all by clicking on the links below.
- Ipe Hardwood Decking (Cheaper)
- Cedar Decking (Cheaper)
- Redwood Decking
- Wood Decking
- Pine Decking
- Synthetic Wood
- Plastic Decking
- PVC Vinyl Decking
- Teak Decking
- Tigerwood Decking
- Timbertech Decking
- Mahogany Decking (Expensive)
Restoring & Repairing Deck Costs
Installation is not the only cost that comes with a new deck. Just like your floor, paint or HVAC, once in a while, you will have to pay for a few repairs here and there. As our restore and repair deck cost estimator dictates, the average price to repair a deck is $1,141. Nonetheless, this price can greatly fluctuate depending on the materials, chosen route, size and scope of work.
Try to DIY
If you built the deck, then no matter the scope of the work, you should be able to repair the deck yourself, saving up to $30 an hour on labor. If you did not built the deck yourself, there are a few small repairs you should feel confident in achieving. Basic repairs, such as replacing one plank or removing a little mold, may only require a few hours of your time. However, if you need a complete overhaul, the time it takes you to complete the job may not be worth it. In this case, I highly recommend calling a professional who can give you a free estimate.
Bear in mind, working with a pro has other benefits as well. First off, materials always play a role in deck repairs. Just like installation, a professional could receive material discounts.
Additionally, contractors know special techniques and treatments that can limit repairs down the road. For example, composite deck materials provide excellent value because of their resistance to the elements and vinyl coatings protect the materials for years. Pricing for both may be more expensive because of the specially treated materials.
Sealing A Deck
The most common deck repair is sealing. Much like a kitchen, to give any aspect of your home new life, all it needs is some fine-tuning. Wooden decks need to be sealed at least once a year to prevent damage to the wood, protect against the climate and remain attractive. It might sound scary, but the average price to seal a deck is $729.
Type of Sealer
There are three different types of sealant you can use on a wood deck: clear, semi-transparent and solid color staining. Some clear finishes let the wood gray naturally, while others preserve its natural look. Semi-transparent offers protection against UV rays and adds color. Solid color provides the best protection against UV rays, but it also removes the natural beauty of the wood by changing the color. Be sure to clean the deck before applying the sealer, as dirt and grime can be sealed with the wood if you don’t prepare it ahead of time.
For more tips on sealing your deck, please see Should You Apply Sealer To You Deck.
Other Factors Affecting Sealing Price
Many homeowners try to seal their decks right before summer. To save a few bucks, try to seal your deck in early spring. With work not as busy, professional sealers tend to lower their prices.
Furthermore, the size of your deck, how long it has been since your last seal and the quality of the materials used will all play a role in the total cost of the project.
The last cost I want to bring up is deck mold. Just like your bathroom or kitchen, your deck needs occasional cleaning to keep it gleaming all summer long. If you fall behind, deck mold, on, under or around your deck, can occur. If it does occur, you must remove it as soon as you can. To remove deck mold, you must:
- Locate the source of the mold.
- Clean your deck regularly.
- Seal your deck.
For more detailed tips, please see How To Remove Deck Mold.
There is nothing more relaxing than sitting on your deck on a warm summer day with a cold beverage by your side. Now that you know all the costs that come with such a deck, you’re ready to decide if a wood deck is right for you and your home.
If you’re going the professional route, click here to receive up to four free estimates.