Mitchell's Building Company L.L.C

  Creating Happy Neighborhoods...One house at a time!

Deck FYI

  Decks and decking materials can come in many different shapes and sizes. Picking the right materials can make all the difference in the world. Everyone's got their own ideas of where, how, etc. But, getting the correct materials that are going to not only last for many years to come, but also more importantly, at a minimum, meet and or exceed local building code requirements should be your number one goal. In knowing the regulated building code requirements of what would pass or not pass inspection in your location NEEDS to be the starting point for your new deck. Numerous times a year we are contacted by an upset homeowner who just paid all this money to have a deck built by Tom in a Truck. Tom in the truck said that he could build what they wanted with the materials they wanted. They continue on to say that he seemed nice and that he could start on it right away. That weekend in fact and could probably have it done in a day or two. And most importantly, his quote was the cheapest by far.
 Now that the deck is built and Tom is gone we are having problems with the county/city building department. We got a letter that our project needed a permit and that they did not have one on file. We tried calling Tom but cant get ahold of him. We have found out that he does not have either a contractors license or a business license. The deck will not pass inspection due to inefficiencies in the structural framing of the deck. What do we do???? 
Unfortunately, people get sold everyday on a price. But as illustrated above, it turns out that building it twice is actually more expensive. One 1/2" of a notch in a handrail post can make the difference in one enjoying the view of the mountains or the ceiling of a hospital room. A pier footing may be required 24" deep on one side of the street and 30" on the other. Although sounds funny, there are reasons for it. Starting with a licensed business and contractor who builds by the rules and regulations of the local building department is key. Although we all think cheaper is better, it is not always the case. We like to tell people that "Cheap isn't good and GOOD isn't cheap" 
Below is a texted diagram of some of the latest building codes and requirements for decks. Before hiring anyone that says that you don't need a permit, call the local building department first. Even if just working on an existing deck.

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