How Much Does Decking Cost

The cost of all types of decking explained, Composite, Softwood and Hardwood decking prices.

Softwood decking, Hardwood timber decking or composite decking information needs to be readily made available so the end user can understand the difference in look, quality, longevity and most importantly cost. The costings below pertain to a completed project to include substructure.

What is the cost of Softwood Decking?

The best decking in softwood timber for you is one that you can afford and a decking product that you will be happy with, including the colour and fixing technique. I wouldn’t get carried away with rebating and plugging holes in softwood or using a hidden fastening system, this adds unnecessary costs to what should be an entry level product in any case.

For standard decking the thickness of approx 38mm for pine is acceptable with decking screws simply inserted 2 per timber joists set at 400mm intervals, no need to pre-drill as the timber is soft enough not to split, allow the screw to be inserted slightly under the surface. This allows for a light sand prior to finishing the deck with exterior timber oil to enhance the look and increase the longevity.

Softwood Pine timber decking installation will cost from £100.00 to £110.00 per square metre, with balustrade to match costing £90.00 per linear metre.

Although Cedar is softwood and in some cases softer than pine should not get confused with a budget installation. Cedar decking is £150 to £160 per sq m installed; this would be for Clear Western Red Cedar and using quality Stainless Steel screws. Always use stainless steel screws on Cedar otherwise the reaction between other metals will show an unsightly black blotch around every screw.

Hardwood Decking.

There are many different species of hardwood timber suitable for decking construction in the UK. Ipe being a common decking material, this is due to the extreme durability and hardness, there are others.

Ipe, Massaranduba, Elondo, Kurupay, Teak, Merbau, Cumaru, Iroko, Belinga, Kebony

They all have their own unique characteristics; some are harder than others and the colour and grain changes with each different species.

The most important process in selecting a hard wood is that it should really have a durability rating of “1”(TRADA refers). Any rating less than this wll have a much reduced lifespan and not represent value for money.
BS EN 350-1 recognises five classifications of natural durability for timbers

  • Class 1 very durable
  • Class 2 durable
  • Class 3 moderately durable
  • Class 4 slightly durable (requires preservative)
  • Class 5 not durable (requires preservative)


There are various techniques to fixing your deck boards, they will have a cost impact on your chosen decking:

1. Predrilled, countersunk and the surface mounted screw is then visible, this is standard.
2. Rebated holes and plugged for a surface mounted fixing.
3. Side profiled with Ebty or IpeClip (plastic clips) provide an almost hidden fixing system

4. Patented invisible fixing system by Exterpark proving a true interior parquet for outside           

5. There are many other side fixing systems available.
The costs of a hardwood decking system vary tremendously, rather like having a piece of furniture bespoke made; each one is unique and completely different.

The cost for a cost effective/standard hardwood deck (not ipe) will be from £190 to £220 sq m this will be a simple design, cheaper hardwood material, pre-drilled and countersunk holes. One has to appreciate sanding and oiling will add to this cost. The other additions like fascia, lift out hatches and steps will add more to the cost. The largest basic cost of course is for a curved design, there is a lot of waste generated here, perhaps as much as 10%.

For a rebated and plugged finish the labour does mount up rapidly as this is a slow process, this is for real wood lovers that appreciate the craftsmanship involved with this style of work.                                                                                                                                       
Hidden fixing systems can cost from £200 and also Exterpark at a similar cost (£240 plus). Decks can cost an unimaginable amount for fine teak or if a thicker decking board is used. For a 35mm thickness commercial deck constructed from Ipe the cost would be in the hundreds per sq m.

In Short, please don't just ask for a quotation unless you have had a clear guide, for an Ipe deck, fully installed with fascia boards, a couple of steps, trim peices, sanded and oiled correctly expect the cost to be in the region of £260 plus vat or for 50 sq m £14,000 plus vat.

Remember there is no such thing as a cheap hardwood deck.

If the designer or client were to specify a hand selected timber with a particular cut to the timber,e.g. Quarter cut; similarly if the colour of the timber were to be homogeneous within a colour range then the cost would again be very high. This selection process is rare for the majority of timber decking and unless money be no object take the timber as it comes and accept timber for what it is. 

If you are considering a hardwood deck, do understand that there is no such thing as "cheap Hardwood decking", if you ask for cheap Ipe - you will get what you pay for and in too many cases you wont be sold Ipe or you will have a substandard installation. Also consider if your "mate Dave" can do a cheap job, this should not be compared to a professionally designed and proposed hardwood decking project.

Composite decking

I am not going to comment on which composite decking manufacturer is best, simply to advise on cost and what’s out there.

Millboard, Exterpark Tech Composite DeckingTimberTech, EcoDek, Maine Deck, Tilon, Xyltech, there are many others and costs range from £130 to £190 sq m to include subframe and installation

Costs represented are exclusive of vat. Every decking will be a different cost, the end user must take into consideration the material, shape, elevation, complexity and detailing.

If you are seeking a design service with a supply and construction in the centre of London, please allow for additional logistics, additional time taken, restricted working day, parking and congestion; in most cases this can have an additional cost of up to 50% to 100% perhaps multiples more of the figures used as a guide in the above text.

If you have any questions pertaining to your deck, would prefer assistance with materials selection or would like us to qualify  a quotation do contact us with your enquiry here.

Exterior Solutions Ltd are the supplliers with the largest range of decking supplying the UK

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