Build Your Own Deck Kit

Build Your Own Deck Kit – Help, which I’ll share with you in a minute. But the bulk of it was all built by mom (& baby). From designing it to drawing it to nailing and screwing it together. The sick part is – I saved $4,500 by doing it myself…!

And because I’m a clumsy fool, I designed it specifically so I wouldn’t need to trim any wood. I have seen

Build Your Own Deck Kit

If the cost savings and simplicity aren’t enough, I do it in less than 48 hours. But I did it

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I recently drew up plans for a simple, no saw needed 10Γ—12 floating deck and packaged them into a short PDF. People love it and I’m so proud of all the deck babies my readers have sent me.

I had a reader update me with a really good looking deck picture and said it only took 8 hours 🀯 and I’m not even surprised! You can grab your copy below!

I don’t want to miss you, so here’s my secret to speed. Building a deck in less than 48 hours takes… patience

But since I’m super frugal and I started this project just to make our daily outside time more bearable, it started small and kept going from there.

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So while I was alone with my baby and my husband was away at school, I started cracking out plans and hammering nails.

I started with a 10’x10β€² mini-deck, but after I realized how easy it was, I couldn’t stop. There are jokes that my whole backyard will be a deck before the next birthday party.

**** The plans I made for you can be done in a day. One reader said it only took him 8 hours and I’m not surprised. They are so simple.

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably caught snippets of my deck building process! It was a sweaty, good time.

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When I quit my job to work from home, my daughter and I created a new full-time mom & baby routine. We would play outside every day for at least an hour or two. The thing is our backyard is a dirt pit. That’s partly thanks to our giant, fetch-happy dog ​​and partly just because it’s a fixer-upper.

So with all my outside time, I was sick of being dirty before 10am everyday! So I already knew I needed a deck, and now that it’s all said and done, I have a 10’x22β€² floating deck with a 2’x8β€² step on one side.

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The short answer is the cost of materials. But if you ask a “deck builder”, it will be 3 times the amount. I guess that’s the normal market rate.

*UPDATE* – Lumber prices have skyrocketed since mid 2020. The current price of lumber is about 3 times what it cost when I built my deck. You can check the price of wood here. I like every day just hoping 🀞

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Before my daughter’s first birthday party, I called a specialist deck builder and asked for an estimate. He quotes me five thousand dollars. Economically we said

If I learned anything from my finance degree, it’s the value of a dollar. I understand that he has a business to run and he needs to make a profit and pay for his employees and other operating costs. Also, the time value of money says I would be paying for a much sooner completion date.

I had predetermined that I would hire him if he came back at $3,500 or less. But I just can’t justify paying over 200% of the materials cost for the job.

*** I recently heard “do not pay anyone for something you can do with your own hands” and it really resonated with me. This is one of my frugal principals and I feel it on a spiritual level!

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Despite just missing a path out of the dirt, I knew it had to be made of wood. People come over and see the potential of our fixer uppers, so we get a lot of suggestions. Everyone (including my husband) thought I was overreaching with my big deck energy.

Almost everyone told me to do pavers. But the thing is that this is not going to work. We actually

Back there and they were more of a hazard than anything. The roots of the trees in our neighbors’ backyard are serious.

Sweeping is a pain, and lasts *maybe* 20 minutes with the dog and debris from the dang trees. I wanted a raised, platform deck with spaces for dirt and leaves to fall through. And I know what I want.

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This is the keyword I always come back to, and let me tell you, it is not easy to find “the perfect tutorial” for a solo lover. .

So in addition to my backyard quirks, I’m not comfortable using a buzzer, so all of these DIY posts aren’t right for me.

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But since I knew I wasn’t going to pay someone else to do it, I had to figure out the best way to capture all the tutorials I could find.

Thankfully there are lots of free deck plans, information, tutorials, etc. I was able to put together a hodgepodge list of rules and guidelines.

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There is some debate about this, but it seems quite logical to me. With the rings turned, you create a cupping feature that only adds to water damage and warping. So the left board is correct.

I’ve heard it both ways. You need to space the deck boards (which we did with the first deck) and you should not space the deck boards (which we did with the second deck).

With deck #1, we used a few nails to space the boards before screwing them down. It left a nice little space that is perfect for dirt and tree debris. But they spread

Over the past 6 months. It looks like a little too much in some places, but it’s better than dirt!

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Deck #2 is only a few months old, and the shrinking hasn’t happened yet. I’m hoping it does, otherwise I wish I just spaced them again. They are right on top of each other and I find myself sweeping too much for my liking.

You can use whatever you want for the deck boards, but we are pressure treated with that too. There are just too many pests and risk of wood rot here in Florida.

There I am! All Gods and Glory with deck #1 under me! My cousin gifted me a 4β€² level for Christmas and I had never received a gift so perfect hahaha.

Don’t get me wrong! The cover is strong. Very well. There are cement floors and deep posts. It’s not “wobbly” at all, which is something I’m very proud of! I have some half-ass tendencies, so this is a huge deal for me.

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My little brother would meet me and the baby girl at Home Depot (and eventually Love’s) with his truck, and we would load it with the materials of this phase.

I bought the materials in phases for my budget. And maybe because I know how limited my deck-building time was. I like to chip away at small goals!

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Deck #1 made me so happy! We finished it the day before New Year’s Eve and had a Christmas tree burning together on New Year’s Eve to break it in.

Call it a deck-warming party, if you will. It was so nice to be out of the dirt! There was still a ton of dirt, but we had a 10Γ—10 print treated shrine of my own creation.

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These are all my joists/beams! They lay right over the concrete slab (which was a huge help in establishing a solid foundation) but I still needed posts on the closest two corners.

Thanks to my little helper (& the baby is there too! haha!). My husband came home for winter break and helped me make sure the deck was perfectly level before we set the posts in concrete. I was nervous about this bit! I wanted some extra hands at this point.

Her own tool set because of this project. If you look really close you will see a tiny hammer πŸ˜‰

In all honesty, that might have been the only screw I put on deck #1. I much prefer a hammer and nails back. Using a screwdriver also made me a little uncomfortable, so installing the deck boards was my husband’s job on deck #1. (Thanks baby!)

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Screwing all of these does not take too long. It can be done in about 3 hours with an extra power drill battery ready to go.

Another beautiful finished product shot looking so clean next to nothing but dirt. Oh, see what I’m saying?!

Deck #2 was a complete afterthought. I was happy with my mini-deck, and frankly I didn’t think so

Extend it. Not because I wasn’t capable (of course lol), but because the only crawlspace under our house starts exactly where deck #1 ended…I wasn’t about to build a deck over the only entry point for

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