How Much Does It Cost To Build A Deck?


(16'x20' deck)
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Build Deck Costs

Outdoor Cost Guides      Decks, Patios & Porches      Build Deck Costs

Ask experts for a flat, average rate to build a deck, and they will tell you that the price varies based on how far above the ground that deck sits.

Typically, a deck is attached to the exterior of a home and can be made of wood, composite materials, or even metal (such as aluminum). Most property owners look at their decks as outdoor living spaces designed to allow better views or serve as a gathering and recreational area.

As is the case with so many things in home building and improvement, the costs to build a deck vary widely based on the materials selected, the height, the kind of footing or foundation, and the general design. After all, some decks have multiple tiers, a few sets of stairs, and specialty add-ons, such as an outdoor kitchen. Each of these items can significantly increase total costs.

Build deck: 16’x20’

Item Cost per sq.ft. Total Cost
Pressure-treated lumber
Exotic hardwood


Concrete or Foundation $5 to $8 $1,600-$2,560
Labor $35 $11,200
Total Cost $48-$73 $15,360-$23,360

Other considerations and costs

  • Railings are often required and will increase the cost of the deck by roughly $35 per square foot.
  • Steps are usually added to the total cost of the deck at a rate of approximately $50 per square foot and will require railings.
  • Decks that will feature some sort of roofing will be far more costly, usually around double the price of a standard deck.
  • A deck can also be built around a swimming pool, and this may be required to meet a different set of standards and local guidelines than a traditional deck attached to the house.
  • Decks can also be freestanding, designed as small balconies, or placed on rooftops, and each will come with a similar set of factors and costs.
  • Don’t forget that a deck may require staining at around $170 per five-gallon pail, and with labor costs of $20 to $35 per hour. If the deck is waterproofed in addition to being sealed with a stain, that can increase the price from $500 to $1,200, or more.
  • Many decks are designed with built-in seating, and this can increase the cost substantially.

Check out our guide if you need a loan for your home improvement project.

DIY considerations

  • A deck can increase the value of your home and give you a seasonal spot to spend many happy hours. It is not, however, a DIY project.
  • Washing and even refinishing a deck could become a DIY issue, but designing, constructing, and finishing the deck is for experts. Get a few bids and go to look at previous projects before making your choice.


  • Craftsman Estimator Costbook, complete series year 2019.
  • Latest prices found on Home Depot and other vendor Web sites.
  • Literature review of DIY Web sites.
How much does it cost to build a deck in your city?
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Cost by city

(16'x20' deck)
  • New York, NY$31,099
  • Bronx, NY$25,555
  • Brooklyn, NY$21,299
  • Philadelphia, PA$26,571
  • Washington, DC$23,057
  • Atlanta, GA$20,861
  • Miami, FL$18,973
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL$19,874
  • Minneapolis, MN$23,315
  • Chicago, IL$27,164
  • Houston, TX$28,019
  • San Antonio, TX$18,808
  • Austin, TX$21,296
  • Denver, CO$17,994
  • Phoenix, AZ$18,984
  • Las Vegas, NV$20,836
  • Los Angeles, CA$23,477
  • San Diego, CA$21,305
  • San Jose, CA$25,734
  • Seattle, WA$18,840

Local costs have been calculated by accounting for labor and material cost differences across different cities. To get accurate cost estimates, indicate yours: