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Considering adding a deck or patio to your outdoor space? You’re in the right place.

In this article, we’ll discuss all of the costs associated with decks and patios, depending on the size and materials used.

However, to get the most accurate estimate, we recommend asking contractors in your area. But research is a good place to start.

Remodeling Magazine suggests that the average cost to build a wooden deck is $14,360 and a composite deck is $19,856.  

Bear in mind that if you want to undertake a second story install, or if you want to build your deck to a unique or esoteric design, this will increase the cost. In general, you can expect this type of project to add between $8 and $20 per square foot.

The following can help to give you a rough idea of what you can expect to pay for different sizes:

  • A deck of up to 200 square feet in area – Between $4,000 and $14,000. $7,000 on average.
  • A deck of between 200 and 500 square feet in area – Between $7,000 and $35,000. $15,000 on average.
  • A deck of more than 500 square feet in area – Between $15,000 and $45,000. $24,000 on average

The Cost Of Building a Plastic or Composite Deck

Composite decking materials tend to be substantially more expensive than their wooden counterparts because of the more specialized manufacturing and processing techniques that are required before the material is ready for installation.

In general, you can expect plastic or composite decking to cost between $12 and $22 per square foot. If you include other components, such as moorings, railings, hardware, and framework, the cost increases to between $30 and $40 per square foot (not including installation). This makes composite materials around 40% more expensive than wood on average.

For an average size plastic or composite deck (320 square foot), expect to pay between $9,600 and $12,800 plus labor.

In some instances, however, composite materials can turn out to be cheaper than wood. Some wooden materials, such as Ipe and Tigerwood, can be very difficult to work with, which will generally increase the labor costs associated with their installation. In these cases, a composite option may be cheaper when costs are factored across the whole project.

The Cost Of Building a Pressure-Treated Wood Deck

During pressure-treating, wood is processed in a depressurized tank. The air within the wood is removed and a preservative is added in order to avoid insect infestation and weather-related rotting and decomposition. While pressure-treating is highly effective in both of these aspects, the wood will still be prone to weathering and corrosion, so further coatings and treatment will be required.

In general, you can expect to pay between $15 and $20 per square foot of decking material. For an average sized decking structure of 320 square feet, the cost will typically be between $4,800 and $6,500 plus labor.

The Cost Of Building an Elevated Concrete Deck

The cost of an elevated concrete deck is determined by a number of primary factors, chiefly, the conditions of the site, the area of the decking slab, and the materials and techniques you use for finishing. On average, this type of deck will cost you between $30 and $75 per square foot, meaning that an average sized build will set you back between $9,600 and $24,000. 

There are several different options you can choose for finishing. In most cases, a simple covering of protective paint will be the cheapest finishing option but other types of finish include stamped concrete and tiling.

Remember that you will also need a licensed engineer to design the structure for your elevated concrete deck and this can cost you between $300 and $700 for a reputable, licensed practitioner.

The Cost Of Different Decking Boards

How much your decking boards will cost you is dependent on the grade of the board you want to use for your project. Here’s a look at the average costs of different options:

Redwood

Redwood comes in a variety of different grades and boards in the lowest grade will cost around $5 per square foot, while higher-grade boards will cost around $30 for the same area. This means a 320-square-foot deck will cost anywhere from around $6,400 to $12,800.

Mahogany

Mahogany boards typically cost between $8 and $11 per square foot. However, it is important to bear in mind that mahogany is not used for decking frameworks or posts, and you will have to use other materials for these structural elements. This makes the total material cost highly variable.

Ipe

Ipe is a tropical hardwood that can be difficult to source, which pushes costs up. Expect to pay between $10 and $20 per square foot for materials. It’s also very, very strong — which is a good thing, but this can also make labor more expensive.

Tigerwood

Tigerwood is another tropical hardwood, usually sourced from Brazil or Africa. It tends to be a little cheaper than Ipe but is similarly strong and tough, which means labor costs will also be more expensive than they would be for other types of material. The cheapest Tigerwood boards are available at around $7 per square foot, although you can expect to pay up to $15 per square foot for some Tigerwood decking boards.

Bamboo

Bamboo is a fast-growing grass that provides a tough building material once it is mature. If you source your bamboo boards from a reputable provider, this is a renewable option for your decking. The materials themselves are relatively inexpensive, but installation can be tricky, which may increase the cost of labor. Expect to pay between $3 and $10 per square foot.

Cedar

Cedar is a softwood that is grown in the United States, making it relatively inexpensive to source. You can expect to pay between $3 and $7 per square foot for your cedar decking boards, which makes the material only marginally more expensive than pressure-treated wood.

Aluminum

Aluminum is a lightweight and robust decking material. This material will cost between $15 and $20 per square foot, significantly more than many wood options.

Fiberglass and composites

Vinyl, fiberglass, and PVC decking can vary significantly in cost, ranging from around $12 to $22 per square foot. 

How Much Does It Cost To Build A Patio?

The cost of building a patio can vary hugely, with an average-sized build starting from around $1,850 and topping out at around $5,140. A typically sized concrete patio, on average, will set you back around $3,450. 

However, a number of different factors contribute to the cost, with size being the main one. As a bare minimum, you can expect a very small patio install to cost around $800, with larger-scale installation running well beyond $10,000. It’s important to properly scope out the project and size to be able to determine the budget you’re going to need. 

And this is before you even start considering more luxurious materials. Once you start to look at other options on the high end, the estimated costs will be even higher. In fact, Lucy Middaugh, an exterior designer based in California, confirmed to us that “any kind of stone decking or tiled patios will average within the $30,000 to $50,000 range.”

The two basic components of patio installation costs are labor and materials. Labor is likely to cost between $5 and $15 per square foot, while materials can range anywhere from $5 to $35 per square foot, depending on the kind of patio you are looking for.

Does a Deck Add Value To Your Home?

One of the questions that is often asked by owners who are considering building a deck is whether this project will add value to their home.

According to Remodeling Magazine’s 2020 Cost vs Value Report, you can expect to return 72.1% of the cost of a wooden deck and 66.8% of the cost of a composite deck.

But while it’s important to consider the value that a deck will add to your home (and remember this when looking at financing options that let you borrow based on the future value), for most homeowners, it’s about more than this.

A deck creates the perfect space for friends and family to gather together and enjoy each other’s company, socialize and eat together.

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