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A well-designed and constructed deck can transform your outdoor living space. It’s a relaxing retreat after a long day at work. It’s a place to entertain friends and serve your famous jalapeño popper dip.

A great deck is a private getaway, right there at home.

You’ve decided you want one. Now what?

Should you design and build it yourself? Hire a builder? How do you decide how big it should be, or what material you should choose?

Let’s take a look at some of the details deck builders in New York consider:

Should You Build Your Own Deck?

Handy homeowners who love DIY projects might consider tackling their own deck project. But know what you’re getting into. Do you know your way around joist hangers, concrete, a carpenter’s square and level, power tools?

A simple deck built from a plan is one thing. A multi-level deck with stairs, railings, and lighting might be more than you want to handle.


Deck Material Choices

One of the first things to consider is material. There are several options, from pressure-treated lumber to cedar to composites to high-end exotic woods. Here’s a look:

Pressure-treated Lumber

Pressure-treated lumber, usually made from chemically treated pine, is the most popular material for decks.

It’s stainable, tough, and many brands carry a limited lifetime warranty. But beware of inexpensive treated wood. It can be full of moisture and will shrink unevenly and twist when it dries. It can swell, warp or crack. Opt for premium boards.

You’ll need to power wash and stain this type of deck occasionally to keep it in good shape.


deck-2Cedar is another popular choice for decks. It’s more expensive than pressure-treated lumber but wears better.

Cedar resists moisture, so cedar decking tends to lie flat and straight. Plan on a lifespan of 15 to 20 years for cedar deck boards, but it can deteriorate faster if your deck is shaded and slow to dry.

You’ll have to clean and reseal it every year or two. Cedar costs more than pressure-treated lumber, but typically less than composite.

Tropical Hardwoods

Several tropical hardwoods are popular for decks, offering long wear and rich color.

Ipe wood decking ranges from dark brown to olive brown and tones, with wide variation in grains. It’s extremely hard, so it wears well and can last 40 years or longer.

Garapa is a beautiful hardwood featuring a light yellow to golden brown color. As the wood naturally weathers, it takes on light silvery gray tones. A garapa deck is resistant to rot, decay, splinters, and scratches without any chemical treatments.


If low maintenance sounds good, go for composite decking. Most are made from recycled plastic and wood chips or sawdust. It’s more expensive than cedar, but won’t rot, splinter or twist. Maintenance? Spray it off with a hose.

How Long Does It Take To Build A Deck?

Deck building contractors in New York say professional builders can complete a typical deck project in a week and a half to two weeks. If you tackle the project yourself, chances are that timeline will be much longer, especially if you can only work on it on weekends and evenings.

Why Hire A Deck Design Company In New York?

While it may be tempting to tackle your own deck project, there are plenty of reasons to hire a professional.

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Size Considerations

At Neave Carpentry, we ask you a lot of questions before we start planning your deck design, including questions about size.

How will you use your new deck? How many people will you entertain? What kind of furniture will you use on it? What’s your budget?

Determining the right size for your deck can be tricky, and it’s an important consideration. If it’s too small, it won’t hold all your friends and furniture. If it’s too big, it can end up out of scale and awkward compared to your house.

Design Experience

The designers at Neave Carpentry have designed decks of all sizes and elevations, out of all types of materials. They know how much space to allow around furniture for people to move around comfortably. They know how to design railings for beauty, function, and safety. They have ideas you likely wouldn’t think of, because this is what they do, every day.

Speed Of Installation

Your deck project won’t linger for weeks with experienced professionals on the job. You’ll be sipping lemonade and grilling those Greek chicken kabobs in no time.

Permit Hassles

At Neave Carpentry, we handle all the permitting. We know what will pass code in your area and what the inspectors will look for. Handling the permit process yourself can be overwhelming and a hassle.

It’s Hard Work

deck-3Do you know what you’re doing? The professionals at Neave do this every day. Just digging the footings that a deck rests on is hard work. We have augers, concrete mixers and all the carpentry tools needed to get the job done.

Next, The Fun Part

Once your deck is complete, customize it to fit your lifestyle. Add planters, lighting, arbors, maybe even an outdoor heater so you can enjoy your deck into fall.

Stainless steel cable railings are a modern, popular touch.

If you’re considering lighting, it’s best to install it while the deck is being built. Wait until later, and installers will have to take your deck apart to run the wiring.

Let Neave Design And Build Your Deck

The experts at Neave Carpentry can help you with all your deck design and construction decisions, based on the unique features of your property and your lifestyle.

Neave Carpentry provides a complete service from beginning to end, assisting with design, construction, and maintenance. Our professional tradesmen and construction teams also do renovations and can help you refurbish your existing deck.

A project manager will visit your site and begin to explore ideas with you, then serve as your main contact point through the process.

If you’re in the Hudson Valley, call us at (845) 463-0592. If you’re in Westchester County, call (914) 271-7996; from Connecticut, dial (203) 212-4800. Or, fill out our simple web form, and we’ll contact you about setting up your free consultation.

Landscape Planning Guide

landscape planning guide neave group cover

FREE Landscape Planning Guide

Download our FREE Landscape Planning Guide and start planning the landscape of your dreams!

Download Now