If you bought a home without a deck, you have probably, at some point in time, wondered what the yard would look like if you did have one. You might have gone so far as to make some measurements, or even sketch out what you could do to make the deck look good. The problem is that you probably do not have the tools or the experience that you need to make the deck become a reality, and you are stuck with a pipedream and no outlet. Fortunately, there are ways to get the deck that you want, and it may cost less than you think. Here is how you can get started.
The very first thing that you need to consider is how much you are willing to spend. This needs to be a relatively hard and fast number, because you do not want to seem unsure about what you want during the construction process. The less sure you are about the budget, the more likely it is that you will keep adding things to the project, driving the price higher than you are really willing to pay. The budget also lets you have a conversation with the contractor where you can come up with very rough ideas about size and shape, before you get attached to the project.
The next thing that you need to do is come up with the design for the deck. If you only want a traditional square deck that goes across the width of the back of the house, then you are well on your way to getting what you want; however, if you want a different design, now is the time to finalize the plans. Remember that decks are meant to last a long time, and you want a design that you are going to be happy with five or ten years down the line, and not something trendy that popped into your head. For the design you can either come up with some rough sketches to show to the contractor, or you can talk to the contractor and share your ideas, and then let the contractor come to you with some blueprints or a model. In either case, be sure that you are happy with the design before the contractor breaks ground, or else your costs will skyrocket.
The actual construction of the deck should only take a couple of days, depending on the weather and the availability of the materials that you want to use. The contractor should only begin the project if they are sure that they can finish uninterrupted in a short time frame. Before the construction begins, make sure that the yard is free of debris and anything that might get damaged when the construction team is working. Make sure that there is a clear path from your back gate to the place where the deck is going to be built, and contact the municipal government to make sure that you have all of the permits and permissions you need. You should be available if the contractor has specific questions during the building process, but it is not necessary for you to stand watch over the project the entire time the crew is at your home. If you have hired a good contractor, you can trust that the work will be done and they will respect your property, whether you are there or not.
Building custom decks is something that not every homeowner can do on their own, but it can still be a rewarding experience when you hire the right contractor. Take your time, do some research and get a contractor that you can trust and soon you will have the deck that you want.
I am Joseph Morgan, and last summer I hired a deck builder for a custom design that I had in mind. The build was complicated and required a lot of work, and I learned the importance of planning and budgeting before the work begins. I wrote this article so that others might learn what to do when they are planning to build a custom deck. If you live near Chester County, PA I highly recommend www.deckcraftcustomdecks.com because of their professional attitude and affordable pricing.