View Full Version : Building a Deck

06-22-2010, 10:23 PM
This doesn't have to do with landscaping, but...

My uncle started building a deck for my grandparents. It was a horrible mess, so they want me to take over. I said i will only do the job, if i can do it by the book. So now, im trying to get my building permit because its the right thing to do...Turns out, they dont like my drawings. I dont have nearly enough info, they want to know way to much information. I probably will need to hire a contractor to help with the plans.

This is crazy, i can build a deck up to code with no problems. But im hung up on this stupid permit. I feel bad for my grandparents, they already bought lumber(my uncles idea) which was $4500. I had to go take most of the hardware back and buy the right stuff which was an additional $500, now the building permit is another $250.

Me taking over will cost about an extra $1000 or more. So i need some reassurance that im doing the right thing, by getting my permits and doing it right the first time.

Also if you have any advice on how to do the blue prints, pls let me know.


06-23-2010, 12:03 PM
you didn't really say what you needed help with.

describe the deck in more detail and people could probably help you figure out what you need to put in the drawings.

06-23-2010, 12:59 PM
4500 buys ALOT of lumber.......how big is this thing??????

06-23-2010, 01:04 PM
4500 buys ALOT of lumber.......how big is this thing??????

maybe its composite?

06-23-2010, 01:26 PM
I have built several decks for my personal homes. Never spent close to $4500 and never pulled a permit. Are you sure a permit is necessary? It isn't here unless the deck will be physically attached to the house. Mine wasn't but I probably wouldn't have pulled one anyway.

06-23-2010, 02:55 PM
A permit is necessary now because he already told the town about it. Just buy a deck building book. It will give you dead/live load specs, joist span charts, etc. Draw it up on graph paper. It's just a deck, shouldn't be that difficult.

06-23-2010, 08:26 PM
The deck is over 500sq feet of redwood. Lots of people dont get permits for decks, just because its so simple. But by law you are supposed to. If you dont the city can make you tear it down, and i would hate to see my grandparents loose all that money.

I guess i dont need help with plans, I just need to know that im doing the right thing by sticking to my guns. Even though its more expensive and taking more time for me to do it. Im still going about it the right way.

06-23-2010, 08:48 PM
lol, uhh..ok then *pats you on the back* You're doing the right thing!

06-23-2010, 08:59 PM
???????? sounds like your inexperienced as much as your uncle. Plans for a deck are as easy as they come. If your not experienced you could waste a lot of wood. Do your self a favor and find someone who is experienced to at least get you going correctly.

Hell on Blades
06-25-2010, 05:33 AM
Find a local architect, you'll have a full set of prints in two days for less than $400. I always draw permits when I'm working on someone else's home, because unpermitted improvements can lead to problems when selling the home.

some counties around here are actually surveying by air for additional building work and comparing it to the permit register.

Hell on Blades
06-25-2010, 05:36 AM
If the inspector doesn't like your drawings, ask HIM how you can improve them to satisfy him. You're probably not showing the right fasteners...

06-25-2010, 08:24 AM
HD will give you a post, beam and joist layout and spec for your local code for free with their deck design service. They will also tell you what lumber dimensions you will require for your framing. The rest is a matter of finding out your towns particulars with regards to railing and structure framing. The town will correct any problems on your design for you if you get something wrong. Its normally not a big deal to get a deck permit-most homeowners are capable of providing what they want...that is unless its super elevated and requires some serious engineering. Hope this helps.:drinkup:

06-25-2010, 10:30 AM
Go to lowes online they have a deck builder thing on there website that will help you lay it all out and even give u a supply list down to the amount of screws.It gives you the layout of the boards and options on what size lumber you want to use and everything then you can print it out and take it in for your permits.

06-25-2010, 01:34 PM
Go to any Lowes or Menards. They have the kiosk right in the store. Just follow the steps and it will give you all the necessary info and drawings that the inspector needs free of charge.