There are two main factors that affect the price of a Timber Decking project
The size of the decking area required
The type of material, fixing & treatment to be used
Check the quality of the company or individual offering you a decking service. If you cannot use someone highly recommended go to the trade association www.tdca.org.uk Check out the websites and/or project portfolios of the people you want to consider and when you feel comfortable arrange for them to come and see you.
If you are not offered a selection of timbers to choose from the chances are you dealing with a part-time decking company who may be selling and installing kitchens or windows one week and decks the next. This in itself does not mean they will do a bad job but they will almost certainly be reliant on a local timber merchant who is likely to have a limited selection of timber and little idea on the appropriate fixings and treatments. A decking professional can usually offer a selection of timbers and will offer advice on the most appropriate material for the project.
Where Do You Start?
These are your three main options:
Unless you are an extremely competent builder/carpenter you should not attempt a decking.
Buy the materials and have your local carpenter fit the deck
This should only be attempted if you are very confident of both the timber suppliers and the installer.
Leave it to a professional deck builder
They will design, supply and install and usually offer a selection of materials.
What is the process likely to be?
You need to be precise when buying materials and ensure that you make allowances for the lengths of timber available. It is unlikely that you will be able to take material back so be as accurate as you can and if it’s a large deck, order in two halves, this will give you the opportunity to adjust your requirements for the second delivery when you have had a chance to see how things are working out. It’s not unusual to make small adjustments to the scheme half way through. We can offer supply only on all our products but we will only process your material call off, we can not offer design advice on projects we have not seen.
If you’re using a professional they will take care of everything. Some companies may require a deposit prior to programming labour and materials; this is not unusual but should not normally exceed 30%, which is enough to cover the cost of scheduling materials
If there is a genuine reason for cancelling or delaying (not just a change of mind) most companies will refund the deposit minus a reasonable disruption fee probably around 10%, provided you cancel before any work has commenced or deliveries been made.
It is standard practice for the final payment to be made to the fitter. It is common in the installed home improvement industry to use self-employed none VAT registered fitters who may be working permanently via one company. This does not mean that they are less competent and they will be subject to the same stringent quality controls as any employed fitter. The big difference is, you don’t pay VAT on the fitting.
There may also be an interim payment on the delivery of material, which should not be more than an additional 35%. Materials should only arrive if a fitter is in attendance and the project is commencing.
How it works with DesignADeck
We can offer supply only, design only, or fit only, offering a wide selection of materials, but mostly we deal with clients wanting the full design, supply and installation service.
We will visit free of charge and assess your project with you.
We will show you sample’s of the materials available and advise you on the most appropriate materials for the scheme. We will price the project in the chosen material and to the parameters of the scheme agreed on with you.
We will visit the site and take a detailed brief of the scheme you propose.
We will produce a quote detailing the size and configuration possibly with a foot print plan of the deck area and location.
If you accept the quote we will produce the full plans, and if required on elevated projects produce a schematic of the decking project and some elevation drawings which we would suggest you show your neighbours and qualify their acceptance of the project.
Notes on Planning and Elevated Decks
It may be prudent with elevated decking to supply these schematics to the planning office. Planning office’s approach to decking appear to differ from area to area so, if you feel you may be infringing on a planning law or one of your neighbours is not happy with the scheme, seek advice from the planning office. They should be able to confirm quite quickly if they feel the deck is going to infringe on any regulations. If they require drawings for planning we can provide the standard views free of charge. It is unusual for planning to reject a deck outright, they may require some adjustments and we do not object to you placing an order subject to planning consent. If you get a complete rejection (which is rare) we will not charge you for the time spent on visits or preparing plans and drawings; however if you want the scheme drawing up, prior to accepting the quote there would be a charge.
Completing the Project
On receipt of your signed acceptance form, which will arrive with the quote, we will schedule your material and labour to suit you within the restraints of our work schedule at that time. We do not take a deposit with order.
We will inform you of the start date and the delivery of materials, which will be the same. We do take a delivery balance, which will have been detailed to you in your quotation.
It is not unusual for small adjustments to be made by you during the construction of the deck and anything you want to discuss can be taken up with the fitter who will accommodate any reasonable request.
If it’s a major change it should be discussed with your designer. It is unusual for any minor adjustment to incur additional cost.
All the decks we build are made to measure on site so if we qualify any revisions early on it probably will not affect the material required and therefore not affect the cost.
We will ask you to pay the installation team exclusive of VAT, the rate set out in the quotation.
All our installation teams operate as self employed DesignADeck installers all year round. When they are not fitting residential decks they will be working for DesignADeck's commercial decking division installing major projects nationwide.