Planning to Build a Timber Deck - Info, Tips & Tricks

With a team of qualified carpenters, designers and woodworkers at Castle & Cubby we know a thing or two about decks and we've built some stunners in the past! We've built many decks for clients seeking to integrate their outdoor areas with their cubby houses and just decks for being decks.

We can provide decking solutions for your project whatever the outcome you are seeking and to help you with the planning we've put together this info, tips and tricks to get your on your way to fully understanding the process of deck building, what is involved and how we can help you.

Planning is key to ensure the success of your deck construction. In this blog post, we will break down the various aspects involved in building a timber decking solution, from initial planning to ongoing maintenance.

When is a timber deck the right/best solution for your outdoor space?

Timber decking is the perfect solution if you:

  • have uneven ground and don't want to excavate and retain existing land.
  • need to raise the height of land to allow for better connection with your home or other outdoor area.
  • want to add natural timber to your aesthetic to break up other elements and create warmth.
  • would like to integrate your cubby house play space with your outdoor entertaining area.
  • would like to create some height to integrate other activities into your play space such as slides.
A floating timber hardwood deck built by Castle & Cubby

A floating spotted gum hardwood deck built by Castle & Cubby in St Kilda VIC.

Planning to Build your Timber Decking

The first step in building any deck is careful planning.

Consider factors such as location, size, and height before diving into the project. Assess your available space and determine where you want your deck to be situated – whether it's attached to your house or freestanding in another part of your yard. When choosing the location of your deck, think about its purpose and how it will fit within the overall layout of your property. Take into account factors like sunlight exposure throughout different times of day and privacy considerations if applicable.

Decide on the desired dimensions based on how you plan to use the space – do you need room for outdoor furniture? Will there be specific areas designated for dining or lounging? These decisions will help guide subsequent steps during construction.

Pick your best spot or location for a deck
Pick your Spot/Location
Measure a space including size and height
Measure for Size and Height
Plan how to use a deck area
Plan how to use the space

Researching Materials for your Timber Deck

Australia offers numerous options when it comes to selecting suitable timbers for decking solutions due to its rich biodiversity. It's important to not only consider aesthetics but also durability against weather conditions prevalent in different regions across Australia. Some popular choices include the ones we have listed below.

Research each type thoroughly considering their pros/cons along with availability at local suppliers near you before making final material selections


Pros: Merbau (durable with natural resistance against termites)

Cons: Sustainability issues. Do some research on this one. Due to perceived sustainability issues we don't supply this.


Pros: Australian Spotted gum and blackbutt are both hard-wearing and long lasting, and are beautiful.

Cons: Due to changes in hardwood milling in VIC, these hardwoods are creeping up in cost.

Treated Pine

Pros: The most cost-effective solution, easily sourced and easy to work with.

Cons: Requires a bit more maintenance - but not stacks. Not as long lasting as hardwood or eco.

Composite Eco

Pros: Minimal Maintenance, best value over the long term. Better for nature!

Cons: Is a lot more expensive than other options. Not as natural looking and underfoot.

Cost Consideration of Timber Decking

Determining costs associated with building a timber decking solution involves several components including materials cost, labor charges, and additional expenses based on location-specific factors.

The cost of timber decking can vary depending on the type and quality of materials chosen, with hardwoods generally being more expensive than softwoods and eco composite timber being the most expensive.

Labor charges will depend on whether you plan to hire professionals or undertake the construction yourself. While DIY may save money initially, it's important to consider your own skill level and available time for such a project. Location-based considerations like access to your property (e.g., if there are stairs or narrow pathways) might incur additional costs due to increased labor requirements during installation.

The Timber Decking Building Process

Once planning is complete and materials have been selected, it's time for the actual construction phase! Building a deck typically involves several steps:

1. Clearing

Remove any existing vegetation or obstacles from the designated area.

2. Foundation

Prepare solid footings that provide stability by digging holes at appropriate intervals according to local building codes.

3. Framing

Construct support beams/joists using treated pine or other suitable material as per design specifications.

4. Deck boards

Install timber planks across joists ensuring proper spacing between each board while considering expansion gaps required in different weather conditions.

5. Railing & Stairs

If desired, add railings around edges along with staircases leading up/down from deck surface.

The Timber Decking Building Process

To ensure longevity and preserve its appearance over time, regular maintenance is essential for any timber decking solution. This includes cleaning debris regularly, sweeping away leaves, dirt, etc.

Additionally, staining/sealing every few years helps protect against moisture damage, fading, and general wear-and-tear caused by exposure elements . Other items worth mentioning include safety precautions during construction (such as wearing protective gear), obtaining necessary permits/permissions before starting work (if applicable), and seeking professional advice when needed especially regarding structural integrity aspects.

Castle & Cubby Decking Solutions

Now you've done your research and you think you'd like to engage Castle & Cubby to build you a deck the next steps are to attain a quotation from us.

Treated Pine Decking - Oiled

SpottedGum Hardwood Decking

Treated Pine Decking Panels

Spotted Gum Hardwood Decking

Check out our Client Stories with Decks!

Nadia Bartel x C&C

We mixed up a Mini Zimi with bold paint, a variation on the awning style and we added a stunning floating raised hardwood decking with a platform and slide to make this unique for Nadia and her family.

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