In most areas, building a deck requires getting certain permits, so it's often best to call local government agencies before drawing up plans. Some deck permits might require submitting plans; homeowners might have to hire an architect or contractor.
After determining that building a deck is legal and that relevant agencies are likely to grant permits, homeowners can start creating their plans. It's often best to speak with professionals, but a local handyman might also have advice for where to start. There are a number of plans online that can serve as solid foundations or inspiration. Do-it-yourself plans should be checked by experts to ensure that they're safe.
After formalizing plans, homeowners can start buying the lumber and other parts needed. Home improvement companies might offer discounted or even free shipping to customers who order a large amount of material. Homeowners doing the work themselves can set their own schedules, but homeowners hiring other people should get quotes for how much the labor is going to cost.
Many construction projects end up costing much more than originally planned, so it's important to make sure there's a bit of extra money available should unexpected problems arise. This is especially true for homeowners hiring others to perform the work, as labor can quickly raise the cost of the build.