Renovating Your Deck in Victoria
Adding or renovating a deck can be the most cost effective renovation you do to your home. Decks add outdoor living space for the fraction of the cost of constructing an addition. A well-built deck can last for decades, and can become the favorite spot for your family to spend their time at home.
Renovating your deck requires a little bit of planning, but time spent planning will pay off in the long run. There are two very important and competing factors that will affect your final deck plans; how you want your deck to look, and your budget.
Every home owner renovates on a budget, but that doesn’t mean that you must settle for a substandard deck. There are three main components that will affect the final cost of renovating your deck; size, materials, and craftsmanship.
Size: Size is obviously a factor, the larger your deck, the more it will cost. Remember that different parts of your deck will affect the final cost differently. A multi-level deck will be dramatically more expensive than a single level deck. Single level decks require less support framing, and can be installed quicker, so they take less time and material to construct. Railings are an expensive part of your deck, and minimizing the length of railing can help to reduce the cost. Stairs will also affect the final cost of your deck renovation. Simple, small stairs can be installed quickly, but elaborate, winding stairs with platforms will increase the cost dramatically.
Materials: Materials will affect the look and durability of your deck, as well as the cost. Modern decking materials come in many options, from natural wood like cedar and spruce, to synthetic materials that imitate the look of wood, but resist warping and rot. Some materials will have higher maintenance costs, increasing the lifetime cost of your deck.
Craftsmanship: Labour can be a significant cost when renovating your deck. If you already have a deck in place, and you are looking for the most economical way to replace it, then replace it with a similar deck. Often, the support and framing can be re-used, and only the decking and railing may need to be replaced. If you are looking to create an intricate deck, with beautiful railings, decking, and custom features, then you will need a high quality deck contractor.
The climate in Victoria requires that deck contractors and home owners consider a few important things. The amount of rainfall we receive every year requires that your deck be able to withstand moisture, a lot of moisture. Your deck may be wet for six months out of the year, and some materials will not handle this well. Drainage is also important. If you have a flat surface for your deck, then there should be a slight grade to help the water run away from your house. Water that runs towards your house will eventually find a way in, and this can be very bad for your house.
Deck Contractors in Victoria BC
The great news about deck contractors in Victoria is that there are many good ones. Building a nice deck is actually not that difficult, and a beautiful deck can be built with a modest level of carpentry skill. The more important aspect to building the deck will be the foundations, and dealing with municipal officials in the building department. Your deck contractor should be able to prepare plans, and submit them for approval easily enough.
If your deck contractor is not willing to prepare designs and acquire any required building permits, then you might want to think about how much work you will need to put into this relationship. Will you be able to tell if your deck contractor is building according to the plans you draw up? Will you be able to answer the inspector’s questions? If not, then make sure your deck contractor takes care of the administration, and that they will be there to meet with the inspector.
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