What does it take to build a deck?
First, a new deck must be designed. It should be large enough to do the job it is intended for. Will you be using a large table to dine on the deck? Perhaps a specified location for a barbecue. Maybe you will be setting up an outdoor living room. These items require a specific amount of area. It may be necessary to add sun screening of some kind, either a pergola or vertical sunscreens. Will the sides of the deck be closed with skirting? Do steps need to be taken to prevent animals from taking up residence under the deck? Overall, it should be styled to blend with the style of the existing house in size, structure and detailing, as much as is possible. The type of decking to be used is a significant decision affecting cost. For those considerations, click this link.
Any deck that is attached to the house or 24" or more above grade requires a building permit. Working drawings showing all relevant details will need to be produced once the overall design is accepted by you. The drawings and permit for an average deck cost around $800.00 in 2018.
Some low decks can be built as "floating decks" with shallow footings, but for any larger or higher deck needs deep footings which are usually either concrete columns with spread footings, or "helical piles" which are steel posts drilled into the ground mechanically. The first inspection is done when the excavation is complete and before any concrete has been poured. The deck framing can be attached to the house at the floor level. .There a several types of attachment and they vary with the structure of the existing house.
Once the structure is framed, and inspected, decking , skirting, railings and other finishing details and finish carpentry can be done. Caulking, cleanup and a final inspection complete the construction process. The construction phase for an average deck takes 1-2 weeks. Painting and/or staining of the wood surfaces can be done once the wood has had some time to stabilize, which usually means a minimum of 60 days.Most of the pictures on this website were taken before that painting or staining was completed.
Most average sized decks end up costing between $10,000 and $20,000.