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How much does timber decking cost? | 2020 cost guide

6th Dec '19 • By Jared Jeffery

As mentioned, you can expect to pay between $200 to $1000 per square metre for decking. This varies with your choice in timber and specs. Your price is also subjective to the size in square metres, accessories, including timber for bearers & joists, nuts, bolts, posts, if you include stairs, a balustrade and/or roofing, site conditions, including soil type, elevation, an elevated deck is more labour intensive and requires adherence to stricter specifications and permits required from council.

Timber Decking Cost Guide 2020

You can expect to pay between $200 to $1000 per square metre for decking. This varies with your choice in timber and specs. 

A new deck can make a world of difference to your outdoor area and lifestyle at home. A glorious new deck provides the opportunity for entertaining, for dining outdoors and the ultimate summer vibe. Not only will a new deck improve your enjoyment at home it will also add value to your house! 

For most homeowners considering installing a new deck there is one question that comes to mind – how much is it going to cost? Is it as much as you think? In this article we aim to break down the cost of decking. So, let’s begin. 

 

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Article Overview

  • How much does decking cost?
  • What decking options are there?
  • What timber should I choose for my deck?
  • Will I need council or building approval for my deck?
  • Finding the right deck builder
  • Timber Decking FAQs

 

How much does decking cost? 

As mentioned, you can expect to pay between $200 to $1000 per square metre for decking. This varies with your choice in timber and specs. Your price is also subjective to the size in square metres, accessories, including timber for bearers & joists, nuts, bolts, posts, if you include stairs, a balustrade and/or roofing, site conditions, including soil type, elevation, an elevated deck is more labour intensive and requires adherence to stricter specifications and permits required from council. 


Cost of Timber Per Square Metre 

  • Treated Pine Decking - $200 per square metre 
  • Hardwood Timber Decking - $320 per square metre onwards
  • Composite Decking - $350 per square metre onwards 
  • Decking with roofing and stairs - $800 per square metre onwards
  • Elevated Cyclone Rate Decking - $1000 per square metre onwards

 

To have your deck boards fixed into the frame you can expect to be charged $180 per square metre for both timber and wire balustrade. Or $320 per square metre for glass balustrade. 

 

What types of Timber Decking options are there?

You may choose from three primary options when it comes to decking; soft, hardwood or composite materials. Service.com.au recommends doing an appropriate amount of research into the material choices so to pick what is best for you. Here is a brief overview of the most popular options. 

 

Treated Pine 

The most affordable decking option, with the ability to be stained or painted it complements most outdoor areas well. Treated pine is also extremely easy to work with making for a fast installation. 

 

Hardwood Timber Decking

Comes in a range of species to choose from, all of which slightly vary in price. You will pay slightly more than you would for treated pine, however hardwood timber decking is thought of as a more premium option. 

 

Composite Decking 

Choose from various natural timbers and paint colours for your composite deck. Combining timber fibre and plastic, this plastic decking option looks just like timber, without the added maintenance! 

 

Types of Timber 

There are a number of timber options to choose from and a few considerations to be made when picking the right timber for your deck. Popular timber species include; treated pine, blackbutt, merbau, ironbark, jarrah and spotted gum. 

 

Treated pine

As touched on, treated pine is the most affordable option for decking. Treated pine can provide an aesthetically appealing deck, but ensure you choose a timber with a ‘H’ rating to ensure it can thrive outdoors. 

 

Blackbutt

For homeowners looking to incorporate an Australian native timber, blackbutt is a popular option. The timber is extremely fire resistant, making it a great option for fire risk zones. 

 

Merbau 

Merbau is sourced from Southeast Asia and we recommend checking you purchase this timber from a reliable merchant to ensure it was ethically removed. A popular and stunning decking timber. 

 

Ironbark 

One of the most durable decking options, Ironbark is both a dense and heavy hardwood timber. It can be more difficult to work with and cut, so expect a slightly longer installation. 

 

Jarrah

Jarrah is available in light, dark brown and red hues making it an extremely popular choice. Both durable and fire resistant you receive great bang for your buck with this timber choice. 

 

Spotted Gum 

Last but not least, spotted gum has a long-expected lifespan, is fire resistant and relatively cheap. Providing a gorgeous deck for your home. 

 

Will I need council or building approval for my timber deck? 

This depends entirely on your home’s location, as council regulations do vary across Australia. As such, we always recommend checking in with your local council prior to commencing any purchasing or installing of your deck. If approval is required, this will be due to safety or visual reasons (e.g. if you have a heritage home). The council may be concerned about height and whether it will hinder a neighbour’s view or be dangerous above a certain height. They may also be concerned about the size of the deck, limiting this to 10m in some regions. 

 

Finding the right Decking Builder 

Getting Carpenter Quotes 

As always, take multiple quotes!! We cannot stress this enough in ensuring you receive the fairest price for your specific job and understand the industry benchmark.

There are a few key questions to ask when taking quotes: 

  • Do you have the required licenses and/or qualifications to carry out this job?
  • Are you insured?
  • What is the expected time of completion for my job?
  • Will you provide a written quote?
  • Can you carry out the council approval requirements?
  • Do you have viable references I can check?
  • Do you have past examples of work I can check?

 

Choosing the right Carpenter to build my deck

Ultimately, you should choose the deck builder that answers all the above questions to satisfaction. Someone who demonstrates integrity and trustworthiness and offers a fair price for the job. If a price seems ridiculously low, there is probably good reason for that (such as a dodgy job or lack of experience). 

 

 Find a Local Carpenter 

 

Decking FAQs

When is the best time of year to install a deck?

The Australian climate provides suitable conditions to install a deck all year round, although you may want to avoid installing during heavy bouts of rain. 

 

Should my deck builder be licensed?

Once again, this depends on your location. You can check this requirement by hopping onto your local council’s website. It may be the case that a decking license is necessary, or it may fall under a different class such as builder or what have you.

 

How much will a new deck cost?

You can expect to pay between $200 to $1000 per square metre for decking. This varies with your choice in timber and specs. 

 

How long does it take to build a new deck?

This depends on your specific job; how big the deck is going to be, what materials you have chosen (as some are easier to work with than others), access to your property and a number of other variables. The best way to receive an accurate time estimation is to ask your deck builder during the quote process! 

 

Further Reading

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