12 Free DIY Deck Plans You Can Build Yourself

deck plans

Needless to say, hiring an expert or a company to build your deck is expensive not to mention intrusive in many ways than one. The good news is that you can it into a DIY project.

That said, the hardest part of deck building is designing and planning. Sure you have decided to have it as a deck instead of a patio and would love to use real wood as opposed to synthetic decking.

That is great but there is more to it including deciding where the deck will be built, how large it will be and whether or not it will be connected to the main house.

All these are important considerations to be made before building the deck. So to point you in the right direction and help you save some cash, I have compiled some of the best DIY deck plans available.

Each of the free deck plans will guide you with regards to the design, materials, tools, and supplies needed as well as the measurements.

The plans are in a step by step format and include photos and illustrations of the building. None require your personal information and are free to download for your DIY deck building project.

After you've used one of these ideas to make your DIY deck, come back and browse my other free building plans so you can build a shedtiny housetree house, gazebo, pergolapavilion, Adirondack chair, outdoor bench, farmhouse table, hammock stand, and many more.

12 x 20 Foot Generic DIY Deck

This is a simple yet stylish DIY deck. Before starting the project, Do It Yourself advices checking with your local building department for any special permit requirements.

The Free DIY deck plan features a quick guide on soils as this affects the overall foundation design and support. Also featured in the tutorial is a list of all you will need.

Some of the items in the list include 2x6 decking, 2x8 joists, hole digger, measuring tape, hammer drill, deck screws and rebar mason level.

The resulting deck will not be strong enough to support heavy loads. This is because only 3 piers are used. If you intend to convert it into a screen porch later, you should add more piers.

2. Raised DIY Deck With Stairs

Raised DIY Deck With Stairs

I fell in love with the end product of this DIY deck plan. You will too. It is raised and features stairs on its side.

While guiding you, the Lowes website also insists on being imaginative and creative to create the perfect deck for your home. The tutorial is intricate and detailed. It features images and videos alike.

In addition to checking with your local building department and homeowners association for building codes, permits, and inspections, Lowes also suggests calling 811 to confirm the presence of ground utilities.

To complete the project you will need furring strips, exterior wood screws, landscape stakes and other tools and supplies. The complete list is available on the DIY deck plan.

The project though manageable requires knowledge of several techniques and terms. As such, the Lowes website avails a host of video tutorials to help you brush up on the relevant knowledge.

3. DIY Deck Plans By TimberTech

DIY Deck Plans By TimberTech

Timbertech approaches this DIY deck plan differently. While other sites provide you with single step-by-step DIY deck plan tutorials, they provide you with a host of DIY deck plans to choose from.

The site features deck plans of varied designs, elevations, levels and use. What I loved about this site is that it features a filter search to help you retrieve a DIY deck plan of your choice.

From the filter search, you can choose the plan that grasps your attention. These filters include Deck categories (either multi-level or single-level) and deck attributes which include Lounge area, multiple staircases, dining area and more.

The downloadable PDF DIY deck plans include material and tool lists along with final deck images. Timbertech, however, points out that the DIY deck plans provided should be approved by a building inspector for validity.

 12x12 deck plans are also available.

4. Backyard Pool Deck

Backyard Pool Deck

Above ground swimming pools have increased in popularity over the years. This is because they are easy and quick to install, are affordable and easier to maintain. For optimal relaxation and enjoyment, decks are created around them.

The Popular Mechanics blog provides a free pool deck plan for the project. While pool decks are usually complicated and difficult to pull off, Popular Mechanics have included a simpler approach along with timesaving tips and techniques.

This particular free pool deck plan illustrates the construction of a 360-degree wraparound pool made of pressure treated lumber. The deck is spacious and measures 10x18ft.

As part of a simpler technique, the deck features a floating foundation system that negates the need to dig post holes. The floating deck plan includes a cost estimator, a materials lists, and instructions.

Speaking of cost estimator, the project completed by Popular Mechanics, used up about $2400 for materials.

5. Floating DIY Deck

Floating DIY Deck

This is by far one of the simplest deck designs I have come across. It literally looks like a well-done floating platform. The deck is detached from the house and is therefore exempted from tax.

Rogue Engineer worked with Kreg Tool Company on the deck though you can work solo. Being 36 inches off the ground, Rogue Engineer needed no permit. You might also not need one.

The depth of the deck footing will be determined by your local building codes. Be sure to check them out before commencing. This simple deck plan contains a complete list of materials and tools needed.

Some of these materials include stone dust, deck blocks, connector screws, heavy-duty screws, joists and cedar decking. The tools include a drill, a Kreg Deck Jig, a nail gun and miter saw, laser level and others.

6. Redwood Freestanding Deck Plan

Redwood Freestanding Deck Plan

The additional of this small 8x10 redwood deck will provide your family with an outdoor platform on which they can spend time together. Sure the deck is relatively small but makes a big difference.

This freestanding deck can be attached to your house or be separate. Regardless, you first need to decide on its height and placement. Most local building codes require decks to be 18 inches high or more.

This free standing deck emphasizes the use of hot-dipped galvanized, noncorrosive stainless steel or even aluminum hardware and fasteners. These increase the durability of the unit.

In addition, it lays out a step-by-step pdf tutorial complete with a list of tools and materials needed to complete the project. These materials include posts, skirt boards, ledgers, deck boards, joists, deck screws and more.

At the bottom of the free-standing deck plan is a contact of an association that can provide you with building or technical information in the event you get stuck.

7. Backyard Island Deck

Backyard Island Deck

This deck is simple to build and maintain. It is made from composite decking and features hidden fasteners which give it an elegant look. The deck does not feature ledger boards or footing.

According to the Family Handyman website, if you have all your materials ready in the early morning and have someone to help, you can be done with the construction by sundown.

The construction complexity is rated moderate meaning most DIY carpenters can hack it. Beginners following the tutorial can also get it done but will take slightly more time.

In their construction, Family Handyman used composite decking (premium grade low-maintenance) and included the hidden fasteners. This brought their costs to about $2000. Using normal decking and screws possibly cuts your costs by half.

Family Handyman provides downloadable pdf tutorial files for the drawings, materials list, and cutting list. As for the tools, you will need a drill, a circular saw or a miter saw.

8. Wooden DIY Deck

Wooden DIY Deck

There are many 10x12 deck plans and even 8x8 deck plans available for you to take advantage of. But what if none of these plans suit your needs? What you need something unique to you?

Well, Home & Garden Rona has got you covered. In their Plan The Construction Of a Deck, they provide you with a detailed step by step plan to follow to come up with a creative deck design to implement.

The process is creative intensive and is guaranteed to meet your needs as you picture them. They recommend developing design program to help organize your ideas of the construction.

They also outline some considerations to make while designing the perfect 12x24 deck plan or 12x16 deck plan, (whichever you please). Included in the considerations are the different materials types along with their weight, hardness, and color.

Since different people, though using the same guide plan will come up with different deck concepts, at the end they take you through the process of calculating the quantities and cost of your deck.

9. Elevated DIY Deck

Elevated DIY Deck

Say you have a 12x16 deck plan in your mind but cannot seem to get one online, you can always draw up your own. The Wood Magazine site takes you through the process of drawing one.

To achieve this, Wood Magazine states that you will need to have a plan view, site view, several elevations and detailed plans for some complex deck parts. They warn that the process is tedious though worthwhile.

Given the amount of work to be done to create the elevated deck plan, this is an intermediate skill project. However, with the deck plan, a beginner with basic interpretation skills can build the deck.

If you want to forego this creation process, you can get a ready to go DIY deck plan on the site but for a small fee.

10. Ground Level DIY Deck

Ground Level DIY Deck

What reeled me in about this unit is fact that the construction is light, straightforward and does not need complex carpentry skills or tools. Anyone with basic handy skills can build the deck in a weekend.

Building the DIY deck will not cost you a fortune. You can have it dead center of your garden, or close to your house. The DIY deck plan involves a list of materials and tools needed.

The tools include a framing square, a tape measure, miter saw, safety glasses and gloves, drill machinery and more. According to the My Outdoor Plans blog, the deck will only take a day to complete.

The tutorial is laid out step-by-step and features 3D graphics to help you visualize each step.

11. DIY Wooden Pallet Deck

DIY Wooden Pallet Deck

This is a dream come true for many. Using wooden pallets to build your deck brings down the costs greatly. Mainly because you can get the pallets for free locally.

Wood Pallet Furniture lays out a 3D graphic tutorial of how you can build this creative deck. The tutorial takes a different approach. It has lots of pictures which act as the step-by-step tutorial.

Nonetheless, the deck is easy to build and a beginner with basic skills can hack it. You can be creative on how you finish the design of the deck.

12. DIY Pallet Deck Under $300

DIY Pallet Deck Under $300

The finish on this unit is exquisite. The deck leading to the pool ahead makes for a great site. Definitely, something I see myself building. Good thing, it costs under $300 which is a plus for me.

Jodi Blackmon and his wife embarked on the DIY project. They provided 3D images of their property before and after building the wooden deck. In between, they also provide images that complement their step-by-step descriptions.

The project only requires beginner skills and does not take ages to build. Remodelaholic really did us a huge favor with this wooden deck plan.

With the above plans, maybe now you can psych yourself and start building. You stand to gain a lot; you will save cash and get a unique unit that makes you the envy of your friends.

 That said, tell us which plan spoke to you. Which one cannot you wait to get started on? Do you foresee any hardships in the DIY projects?

We would love to hear from you. Sharing is caring so please let us enlighten using the comment section below.