When hiring decking contractors near me, what sets apart one contractor from another? And how can you pick the options for your deck project? Let’s talk about five questions every homeowner needs to consider when hiring a deck builder.
Which Decking Contractors Near Me Offer Custom-Designed Decks?
First, consider which deck contractor will be able to take your vision and bring it to life? And what if you don’t know what you want, beyond a beautiful outdoor living space?
Here at Structurally Speaking, owner Jim Brennan personally oversees every project from start to finish. He’ll meet with you to discuss your needs and see your outdoor space, design your deck, and oversee the building team. If you have an idea of what you want, Jim will help you achieve your goals. On the other hand, if you’re not sure what you want, Jim can explain your options. His decades of expertise in this field will always provide you with your dream deck…no matter what your dream envisions!
Our decks can be simple or elaborate. Here are just a few of the different projects we’ve designed and completed in the past:
- Multi-level decks
- Second-story decks with stairs leading down to your yards
- Decks with pergolas
- Small decks for limited spaces
- Hot tub decks
- Decks that are built around landscape features, such as trees
- Combination deck/sunrooms
- Decks with built-in benches
- Gardener-friendly decks with built-in planters
- Decks around a pool
Your custom deck will take advantage of all your home and garden’s unique features when it is designed by Structurally Speaking.
When designing your new deck, here are a few things Jim and our team will keep in mind:
- What is the primary use for your deck and which family members will use it most often?
- Will you need built-in seating for large parties? Or will you need areas where seating arrangements can be created with stand-alone furniture pieces?
- What kind of maintenance and upkeep are you willing to do?
- Are there any mobility issues for yourself or guests that necessitate ramps, wider stairs, etc.?
- Do you have an existing porch, patio, or deck that needs to be demolished or incorporated into the design?
- What direction does your home face? (i.e., when and how much sun will your deck get?)
- Do you have a pool, hot tub, or water feature you’d like to incorporate?
- Is it important to you that we include a fire pit or fire table area?
- What kind of railing do you want (and what do you need to keep your family safe)?
- Are you interested in a wood deck, a composite deck, or another material?
- Do you have existing outdoor furniture or elements that you want us to incorporate into the deck design?
- Will you need new doors added to your home to access the deck?
- Do you have any construction challenges, such as an extremely sloped yard?
- Does the deck design need to incorporate built-in lights, or will you make use of existing outdoor lights?
- Do you want space for outdoor cooking and grilling?
- What is the overall aesthetic of your home?
This isn’t a complete list, but don’t be intimidated. We’ll walk you through all the options in terms of size, color, materials, and more during the initial consultation.
After the initial consultation, we’ll do a design presentation with at least two different design recommendations. These are scaled drawings that show different elevations and viewpoints. You get a chance to discuss the advantages of each option, as well as make any changes.
You won’t get this kind of back and forth with every deck builder. With other contractors, you might have fewer options for customization. In fact, some only offer cookie-cutter decking solutions. Will you really use your new outdoor space if it isn’t designed well? A custom solution gives you more bang for your buck. It’s why we are a top deck contractor in the Triad area!
How Much Will My New Deck Cost?
Every deck builder has their own way of calculating how much your deck project will cost. However, when you work with the Structurally Speaking team, we don’t start with a design and then determine the budget. Instead, we start with your budget and create a design that falls within it.
Speaking about your budget will be part of our initial consultation. If you have a limited budget, don’t worry! We can still help you build the deck of your dreams. In this case, we’ll look for ways to save money while maintaining the unique deck elements that are important to you.
For example, maybe you are willing to consider a smaller deck, as long as it still has enough room for seating your family.
Or, as another example, maybe you go for the bigger deck but a less expensive material and standard decking color, instead of a material that is fully customized and more expensive.
We’ll go over every design element so we can gauge what is most important to you. Then, we’ll design a deck that perfectly fits your budget and your wish list.
Keep in mind that when you work with the Structurally Speaking team for your custom deck, we don’t present you with a surprise bill at the end of the project. You’ll know exactly how much your deck will cost before we start building it. We don’t magically find ways to inflate your bill during the project as some contractors do. The number we quote is the price you pay.
We have relationships with many manufacturers, so we’re able to offer competitive pricing. We pass on any savings to you, so you’ll be able to get a new deck without breaking the bank.
Will My Deck Project Be Well-Managed?
Deck building is our passion. We don’t sell you on a design and then pass off the project to an independent general contractor, as is the case with some companies. When you hire Structurally Speaking, you hire our in-house team. We’ll be the ones completing the construction part of the project.
This is part of the reason why it’s so important to hire a local team for the job. Larger national companies generally have subcontractor teams that take over when the sales team is done. The problem with this is that the sales team might not know much about decking design. They just know how to convince you to sign on the dotted line. At the same time, the general contractor team doesn’t know what the sales team promised. They aren’t invested in making sure the customer, is happy. They simply build what they are told.
And if they can cut corners, they often do. Subcontractors are paid a set fee to do the work, and this pay rate is often low. So, they cut corners in order to take home more money. They might buy lower-quality supplies, rush the work, or skip important steps. As a result, many homeowners who work with larger decking companies find that they need a deck replacement after just a few years.
At Structurally Speaking, Jim oversees every project to make sure it is done right and you are happy with the results. We never cut corners to make a job go faster, and our number one concern is ensuring your deck is safe, functional, and beautiful. You won’t need to replace your Structurally Speaking deck for decades after it is built.
Can the Contractor Help Me if a Deck isn’t the Best Option?
Sometimes, you might start out thinking that you want a deck. However, once you really think about it, you might want a screened porch, three season porch, or sunroom instead. If this is the case, can the contractor you choose help you?
If you hire Structurally Speaking, the answer is yes! We have experiences with all types of decks and porches. Our goal isn’t to design your deck; it’s to design your perfect outdoor living space. Sometimes, once we start talking, we determine that a deck isn’t the best choice. Or, we do a dual deck/sunroom combination.
Your outdoor living space needs to fit your family’s needs. So, if you hire a custom deck builder who isn’t flexible, you may find yourself with an end product that you don’t really use.
Which Local Deck Contractor Provides the Best Customer Service?
Our overall recommendation is to interview several potential custom deck builder companies and find the one that provides you with the best customer service. Most other issues can be handled if you have a design and building team dedicated to making you happy. Here’s how we go above and beyond for our customers:
- We stay in close contact during your project. You never have to wonder what’s going on, and you can call any time if you have a question.
- When we set a timeline, we stick to it. Obviously, when speaking about outdoor work, Mother Nature sometimes has other plans. However, we always stay in close communication. During the building process, our team shows up on time, so you don’t have to sit around wondering where we are or if we are coming that day.
- We love your input. We don’t have pre-set designs that we use for every homeowner. Your home and yard are unique, so your deck should be unique too. (Don’t worry if you don’t know what you want initially. We’ll walk you through it.)
- If needed, we’ll do the paperwork for you. Some projects require approval from a homeowners’ association or even a permit from the city. We know exactly how to deal with these needs to ensure that your deck building project is completed without any problems.
- We’ll hunt down those special materials you really want. If you have your heart set on something, we’ll make it happen.
- If you aren’t happy about something, we’ll make it right. At the end of the project, you should completely love your new deck.
We take pride in providing top-quality customer service every step of the way. In fact, here’s what one of our customers had to say about working with our team:
“Now that our deck is complete, I want to thank you and your team for the high level of craftsmanship and professionalism. We gave you a tight deadline for completion of the deck before a major social event and your team hit the target perfectly. The back and forth exchange of ideas and suggestions for the materials and design were most productive and our collaboration produced a beautiful deck area. As you know we connected immediately with the sense we could work well together and the whole process was well-explained and executed to perfection. The experience you possess showed itself many times over from the easy inspection approval to the look of the deck design from all viewpoints. Your crew was hard-working and very highly skilled…a rare combination that shows in the final product. Thanks for a great job and many more beautiful decks are in your future, we are certain.” – Rob and Sheila Roszell
You can read more customer reviews here.
How to Get Started
If you’re ready to start on your custom deck design, click here to contact us. Jim is happy to speak with you in a no-obligation consultation, in order to determine the best option for your home.