Deck Makeover & Build On A Budget

4 Materials
3 Days

I did not think this day would be here so soon but on a whim, we decided to rip out our deck and start fresh. Our existing deck had layers of paint and stain on it, and major cracking. Since this is technically the front of our house, we wanted it to have curb appeal. Let’s take a look at the before.

We have two separate decks, with a concrete pad connecting the two. This runs the entire front of our house, or side, however you want to look at it. It’s the first thing anyone notices when walking up to our house, as both of our front doors are located here, with one on each of the deck’s.

At one point, we did give these decks a coat of white deck paint, but we knew long-term, that wasn’t the answer. It held up one year, until we decided to finally get to this project this year.

Another look at the before of the other side of the deck!

And one last look at the before, when we ripped the railing off and decided it looked so much better without!

Deck Removal

Using a chainsaw, hubby had the decking ripped out in a days time. This is really going to depend on what you plan on removing. We wanted to re-use our main support beams shown, but did remove the rest of the deck and the joists.

Materials & Deck Build

We headed to Lowe’s to pick up pressure treated common deck boards and 2×8” boards to replace the joists. The existing joists were 6”, but because we wanted to extend the deck a foot or two, we needed to increase support.

Overall, between pressure treated deck boards, 2×8″ joists, and deck screws, we had spent about $1200 in materials for this entire project. I’m simply not going to dwell on price here, because everyone’s deck is different. Depending on what parts you replace and what you keep, the size of your deck, and the cost of supplies near you, this price can vary widely. It’s up to you to measure out your deck, and decide how many of each material you will need, then budget accordingly. We did plan on spending around $1500, and managed to come in under budget which is always a positive!

Joists were laid down first, as you can see above.

Once the joists were in, we started laying our deck boards the opposite way that the joists run. We waited to screw any of them down, until we had them all laid and spaced exactly how we wanted them. Then go ahead, and screw the deck boards into the joists below.

We repeated this step on both decks, until they were both finished. Because this is pressure treated wood, we need to wait a while before finishing with stain or sealer. So we opted to leave it bare over the summer and let it dry out!


And here's a look at the deck once we moved all of our furniture back into place and got it ready for hosting some friends! Scroll down through the images to see how we styled both sides of our deck, and how nicely this project turned out for such a small budget!

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Frequently asked questions
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  2 questions
  • Kym Dawson-Boulanger Kym Dawson-Boulanger on Nov 24, 2020

    better check with your local building codes. a deck that far off the ground most likely needs railing around the deck and handrails for the stairs. Other than that it looks great

  • Ina Bergen Heinrichs Ina Bergen Heinrichs on Nov 25, 2020

    Why didn't you continue the decking over the cement for a more cohesive look? I agree that a railing would be beneficial for those of us who have trouble climbing stairs. Otherwise, good job.

Join the conversation
2 of 14 comments
  • Gigi Gigi on Nov 25, 2021

    It looks amazing, what a fabulous place to enjoy alone with a cup of coffee or with friends and family. I have a back deck that will need replacing so I appreciate the insight.

  • Mary Russell Mary Russell on Nov 23, 2022

    Unfortunately,in our area the darn wood bees would have that eat up in a couple years.