labor cost to build a composite deck


Average Cost of Composite Deck Installation

While the total cost range is quite wide, most composite decks cost an average of around $26 per square foot when a treated wood substructure is used and the deck has railings and a short set of stairs. This includes professional installation.

Average Do It Yourself cost

$6.50 – $21.00 / Square Foot

Average Contractor Installed Cost

$20.00 – $45.00 / Square Foot

Typical Cost Average

$32.00 / Square Foot

Last Updated: Thursday, March 3, 2022


Overview of Composite Wood Decks

Composite decking is growing in popularity because it is more durable than wood and requires far less maintenance. They make it the perfect choice to install around an above ground pool or other backyard feature that you prefer not to spend hours each season pressure washing or re-sealing.

The cost of composite decks varies greatly with the specific type of composite, and the fact decks can have rails or no rails. Other composite deck price factors are discussed below.

The cost differences in composite decking are shown in the Retail Cost section below. Sample project costs including materials and installation give bring material and labor cost factors together in a package, including the cost of composite railings around your deck.

Finally, actual project costs submitted by homeowners give real examples of what others have paid. With that in mind, consider bookmarking Business Finance News and returning to share your deck cost for the benefit of other readers.

Product and Installation Supplies Cost Details

Composite Deck Cost Factors

As noted, contractor installed decks run $22 – $33 per square foot. Remodeling Expense pegs the cost at about $9.40 – $15.00 per square foot installed.  However, using the Trex Cost Calculator shows that supplies alone will exceed that cost range. HomeGuide gives a more realistic installed cost of $20 – $38 per square foot.

Here are the keys to the cost of a composite deck.

  • Specific Decking Used – Brands like Trex and TimberTech make basic, better and best grades of decking. Quality is mostly based on the decking material used, such as polymer or cheaper plastic composite and whether all sides are capped. For example, Trex’s best series, Transcend, costs 75% more than its entry-level Trex Select decking. TimberTech Pro Legacy costs more than twice what TimberTech Edge costs. That’s the case when comparing Azek Vintage with Azek Harvest.
  • Whether your Deck Has Rails – Rails add 40% to 55% to the cost of a composite deck. Decorative post caps, wider top rail, aluminum deck rails and other accessories factor into total rail cost.
  • Deck Thickness – Some brands offer thickness options. It’s standard planks are about .8” thick. It sells what it calls a 2” plank that is 1.3” thick.
  • Substructure Factors There are two. Occasionally, an existing substructure can be used for the new deck boards. If you’re deck includes a new substructure, using pressure treated pine is a common way to save money versus using composite.
  • Deck Complexity – A rectangular deck with boards running parallel to the house is an easy installation compared with an octagonal deck or one with boards running diagonally. Whenever installation is more difficult, cost goes up.
  • Deck Size – Obviously, the larger a deck is, the more it will cost. However, cost per square foot drops slightly as size increases.
  • DIY vs Pro Installation – Labor costs represent 20% – 40% of the cost based on the composite deck line you choose. That’s what you can save with DIY installation. Specific labor cost per square foot are discussed below.
  • Extra Features – If you want electricity run around the railings for lighting, it’s going to add. Built in seating does the same. Adding a retractable patio awning is a common feature that will also increase the cost to build a deck on your home.
  • Dirt Work – If the area needs to be leveled or graded, expect the total cost to rise by $250 to $1,000 or more depending on the size of the area.
  • Time of Year – Having a deck built in the off-season, when contractors are less busy, could bring lower cost estimates.
  • Cost of Living – Generally prices in your area, low, high or average, will affect composite deck cost too.

Cost of Installation Supplies

Sometimes homeowners shop deck boards, see composite deck cost per square foot, multiply by the size deck they want and expect that to be the total cost. Far from it.

Here are retail costs that will assist you in estimating total cost. Let’s start from the ground up.

  • $1.75 – $2.25 per square foot | Cost of pressure-treated lumber plus concrete piers for the substructure.
  • $5.25 – $6.50 per square foot | Cost of Composite Substructure Materials. Most composite decks are built using a wood substructure. Trex Elevations is one brand of composite substructure, and it costs about three times what wood costs.
  • $4.00 to $12.00 per square foot | Cost of Deck Boards. The factors above explain the wide cost range. Note: Most deck boards are priced by the plank. To determine square feet, multiply the width x the length in inches and divide by 144. If the board is 5.5” or 6”, which most are, you can also simply divide board length by 2.
  • $30.00 – $55.00 per linear foot | Composite Deck Rail Materials, based on type and style. If a rectangular deck is attached to the house, then it has rail on three sides. Add up the length of those sides and multiply by the cost per linear foot.

Sample Composite Deck Project Costs

Let’s look at three projects and three levels of decking quality using a 400 square foot, or 20 x 20 foot deck for each.

The first cost is without rails, the second with rails.

Basic Quality Composite Decking

  • Easy Rectangle: $4,800/$6,700
  • Average L-Shaped: $5,700/$8,550
  • Complex Design: $6,800/$9,800

Average without rails: $12.00 – $17.00/square foot

Average with rails: $16.75 – $24.50/square foot

Better Quality Composite Decking

  • Easy Rectangle: $6,200/$9,300
  • Average L-Shaped: $7,700/$11,500
  • Complex Design: $9,200/$13,500

Average without rails: $15.50 – $23.00/square foot

Average with rails: $21.75 – $33.75/square foot

Best Quality Composite Decking

  • Easy Rectangle: $8,600/$12,500
  • Average L-Shaped: $9,450/$13,750
  • Complex Design: $10,500/$14,800

Average without rails: $21.50 – $26.25/square foot

Average with rails: $30.50 – $37.00/square foot

Old Deck Removal Cost

Wood or composite deck removal and disposal costs $1.25 – $2.50 per square foot. If you DIY, a good option is to rent a small dumpster for the disposal.

Permits, Inspection, Related Costs and Installation Time

Permits and Inspection Cost

  • $30 – $100 | You’ll need to pull a permit so that the deck substructure and completed deck can be inspected.

Related Costs and Installation Time

Contractors charge by the job instead of by the hour. Depending on deck difficulty, it breaks down to:

  • $4.50 – $7.50 per square foot | Installation labor cost to install a deck.

Cost varies based on whether a handyman or a decking contractor does the work and how difficult the installation is.

Homewyse pegs labor a little higher but emphasizes that deck complexity is the largest factor. The site estimates that difficult design doubles the time and therefore the labor cost of installation from about $4.00 to about $8.00 per square foot.

Here are typical time frames for the 400 square foot decks estimated above installed by a crew of 2-3 people.

  • 2.5-4 Days | Easy Rectangular Deck
  • 4-6 Days | Average L-shaped Deck
  • 5-7 Days | Complex Deck Design

DIY or Hire a Pro?

Decks are a common outdoor project for homeowners with good carpentry skills. Keep in mind that it is a big project that has to be planned carefully and done properly. It will be inspected, and you of course want it to be safe.

Lowes has a series of videos on basic deck building that might help you decide whether DIY is your best approach. Composite decking has a few unique challenges like the need to pre-drill fastener holes. This 5-minute video from TimberTech shows how to install decking with a grooved profile. The groove allows you do use concealed fasteners. If you choose square planks, the fasteners will be driven through the top of the planks.

Photo of author

Author S Krone

A lawyer never retires. So I would just say that I am not as active as I used to be. Now I simply dedicate myself to fishing, my hobby, and my grandchildren. For Business Finance News I write about legal aspects of mortgage policies, mostly regarding the rights of policyholders. I also have articles about personal injuries.

Thank you for visiting businessfinancenews.com

Leave a Comment

Business Finance

About Us

Business Finance News is a brand oriented to business owners and dedicated to analyzing and comparing the cost and conditions of B2B procurement of goods and services through free quotes delivered by business partners.

Contact

Address 5050 Quorum Drive, (75254) Dallas TX

telephone 844-368-6072

DISCLAIMER

A personal loan is a medium term loan with a fixed interest rate that is repaid in equal monthly payments and it's usually limited to 24 months. Loan offers and eligibility depend on your individual credit profile. Our lenders can help you obtain as much as $3,000 depending on the lender, your state and your financial situation.

The owner and operator of businessfinancenews.com is not a lender and is not involved into making credit decisions associated with lending or making loan offers. Instead, the website is designed only for a matching service, which enables the users contact with the lenders and third parties. The website does not charge any fees for its service, nor does it oblige any user to initiate contact with any of the lenders or third parties or accept any loan product or service offered by the lenders. All the data concerning personal loan products and the industry is presented on the website for information purposes only.

Businessfinancenews.com does not endorse any particular lender, nor does it represent or is responsible for the actions or inactions of the lenders. Businessfinancenews.com does not collect, store or has access to the information regarding the fees and charges associated with the contacting lenders and/or any loan products. Online personal loans are not available in all the states. Not all the lenders in the network can provide the loans up to $3,000. Businessfinancenews.com cannot guarantee that the user of the website will be approved by any lender or for any loan product, will be matched with a lender, or if matched, will receive a personal loan offer on the terms requested in the online form. The lenders may need to perform credit check via one or more credit bureaus, including but not limited to major credit bureaus in order to determine credit reliability and the scopes of credit products to offer. The lenders in the network may need to perform additional verifications, including but not limited to social security number, driver license number, national ID or other identification documents. The terms and scopes of loan products vary from lender to lender and can depend on numerous factors, including but not limited to the state of residence and credit standing of the applicant, as well as the terms determined by each lender individually. 

APR REPRESENTATIVE

APR (Annual Percentage Rate) is the loan rate calculated for the annual term. Since businessfinancenews.com is not a lender and has no information regarding the terms and other details of personal loan products offered by lenders individually, businessfinancenews.com cannot provide the exact APR charged for any loan product offered by the lenders. The APRs greatly vary from lender to lender, state to state and depend on numerous factors, including but not limited to the credit standing of an applicant. Additional charges associated with the loan offer, including but not limited to origination fees, late payment, non-payment charges and penalties, as well as non-financial actions, such as late payment reporting and debt collection actions, may be applied by the lenders. These financial and non-financial actions have nothing to do with businessfinancenews.com, and businessfinancenews.com has no information regaining whatsoever actions may be taken by the lenders. All the financial and non-financial charges and actions are to be disclosed in any particular loan agreement in a clear and transparent manner. The APR is calculated as the annual charge and is not a financial charge for a personal loan product. 

Late Payment Implications

It is highly recommended to contact the lender if late payment is expected or considered possible. In this case, late payment fees and charges may be implied. Federal and state regulations are determined for the cases of late payment and may vary from case to case. All the details concerning the procedures and costs associated with late payment are disclosed in loan agreement and should be reviewed prior to signing any related document. 

Non-payment Implications

Financial and non-financial penalties may be implied in cases of non-payment or missed payment. Fees and other financial charges for late payment are to be disclosed in loan agreement. Additional actions related to non-payment, such as renewals, may be implied upon given consent. The terms of renewal are to be disclosed in each loan agreement individually. Additional charges and fees associated with renewal may be applied. 

Debt collection practices and other related procedures may be performed. All the actions related to these practices are adjusted to Fair Debt Collection Practices Act regulations and other applicable federal and state laws in order to protect consumers from unfair lending and negative borrowing experience. The majority of lenders do not refer to outside collection agencies and attempt to collect the debt via in-house means. 

Non-payment and late payment may have negative impact on the borrowers’ credit standing and downgrade their credit scores, as the lenders may report delinquency to credit bureaus, including but not limited to Equifax, Transunion, and Experian. In this case the results of non-payment and late payment may be recorded and remain in credit reports for the determined amount of time.