How much does a porch or deck railing cost?
How much does a porch or deck railing cost?
$20 – $60 cost per foot installed (wood or vinyl)
$25 – $250 cost per foot installed (metal or composite)
$60 – $600 cost per foot installed (cable or glass)
$200 – $6,000 average total installed cost (10' section)
Average deck railing cost installed
Deck railing costs $20 to $600 per linear foot installed on average, depending on the material. Wood railing is the cheapest and costs $20 to $50 per foot. Vinyl railing costs $25 to $60 per foot and is easier to maintain. Deck railing is also called porch or view railing.
|Length (feet)||Wood or vinyl/PVC||Metal or composite||Cable or glass|
|5||$100 – $300||$130 – $1,250||$300 – $3,000|
|10||$200 – $600||$250 – $2,500||$600 – $6,000|
|20||$400 – $1,200||$500 – $5,000||$1,200 – $12,000|
|50||$1,000 – $3,000||$1,300 – $12,500||$3,000 – $30,000|
Cost to install a deck railing by type
|Type||Cost per linear foot installed||Details|
|Vinyl / PVC||$25 – $60||Lightweight, easy to clean, limited colors|
|Wood||$20 – $50||Cheap but hard to maintain|
|Aluminum||$50 – $200||Lightweight but costly|
|Composite/ Trex||$25 – $60||Easy to clean, good value|
|Cable||$60 – $500||Durable but expensive|
|Glass||$100 – $600||Attractive but expensive|
|Wrought iron||$50 – $100||Heavy, hard to work with|
|Stainless steel||$50 – $250||Durable but heavy|
Wood railing cost
Wood railing costs $20 to $50 per linear foot installed, depending on the wood type. Pine is typically the cheapest, followed by cedar and redwood. Tropical woods like tigerwood, Ipe, and mahogany are attractive and durable but cost more.
Wood must be sealed, stained, or painted every 1 to 2 years, making it harder to maintain than other materials. However, wood can be stained or painted to match the style of any home or deck.
Aluminum railing cost
Aluminum railing costs $50 to $200 per linear foot with installation, depending on the post size, gauge, and any shipping costs. Aluminum is lightweight, durable, and rust-resistant. However, it tends to dent and is not easily painted.
Stainless steel railing cost
Stainless steel railing costs $50 to $250 per linear foot with installation and is more durable than many other materials. Stainless steel offers a high-end look but is heavy and difficult to work with.
Wrought iron railing cost
Wrought iron railing costs $50 to $100 per linear foot installed. Like stainless steel, it is heavy and hard to transport and install, but it is often used for more vintage styles.
Cost to install PVC or vinyl railing
Vinyl or PVC railing costs $25 to $60 per linear foot installed and is one of the most popular materials for railing, decks, and fences today. Vinyl is weatherproof, easy to clean, low maintenance, and lightweight. However, it only comes in a few colors.
Cost of cable railing
Cable railing costs $60 to $500 per linear foot with installation and is made of steel wire. This material is low maintenance and durable but expensive.
Glass railing cost
Glass railing costs $100 to $600 per linear foot installed and is made of large panels of tempered glass. This method is best for contemporary and high-end styles, to preserve scenic views, and to block the wind.
Cost to install composite railing
Composite railing costs $25 to $60 per linear foot installed and is one of the most popular materials on the market. Composite manufacturers like Trex combine wood and plastic to make a weatherproof, low-maintenance material that has the natural appearance of wood and the convenience of vinyl.
Balcony railing cost
A balcony railing costs $500 to $9,000 with installation for 10 linear feet, depending on the material, height, and any add-ons or customization.
Deck railing installation cost calculator
Deck railing material costs
To complete your deck railing, you'll also need posts, caps, and balusters. Railing posts are large anchor pieces that stand about 8 feet apart. Caps are decorative tops that give the posts a finished look. Deck balusters—also called spindles or pickets—are the thinner, vertical pieces installed between the posts.
|Posts||$50 – $150 each|
|Caps||$5 – $130 each|
|Balusters, spindles, or pickets||$5 – $20 each|
|Handrail, subrail, or bottom rail||$5 – $25 per foot|
The following factors may also influence material costs:
Rail width – Narrow and standard rail widths cost less. Wider rails cost more but can offer convenience when they’re wide enough to set a drink on top.
Stair rail vs. straight rail – Stair railings cost $20 to $250 per linear foot compared to straight rails parallel to the deck.
Hardware – The installation material estimate typically includes the cost of brackets, bolts, and screws used to secure the railing.
Colors – Staining a deck costs $1.50 to $4.00 per square foot including materials and labor, while painting a deck costs $2.00 to $5.00 per square foot. Standard colors for composite and vinyl railing cost less than premium colors.
Labor cost to install deck railing
The labor cost to install deck railing is $10 to $50 per linear foot, depending on the job complexity and the contractor’s skill level. A general contractor charges $50 to $150 per hour or 10% to 20% of the total project cost. Other labor costs include:
Removing current rails – Some contractors include removal and disposal in labor costs, while others charge a separate fee. Confirm your estimate includes this service.
Season – Spring and summer are the most popular time for home exterior projects. Contractors may lower their rates during other months.
Repairs – Deck repairs cost $750 to $2,500 on average.
Permits – Building permits cost $50 to $300 for small jobs. Many contractors pull building permits and include the cost in their labor fees.
The cost to build a deck is $25 to $50 per square foot or $3,600 to $20,000 total installed, depending on the size and material type.
Frequently asked questions
What is the cheapest deck railing?
Wood is typically the cheapest deck railing material. However, vinyl and composite are the best value because they are low maintenance in comparison to wood.
What is the best deck railing material?
Vinyl and composite are often considered the best deck railing material because they’re low maintenance, durable, and last longer than wood. If your focus is on having a modern or high-end look instead of value, glass or steel may be best.
Are railings required on all decks and porches?
Most building codes state that railings are required if a deck is over 30 inches off the ground, has more than 4 steps, or if the steps are wider than 44 inches.
Railings are usually 36 to 42 inches high. There should be less than 4 inches between vertical rails.
How long do deck railings last?
Vinyl, aluminum, and composite deck railings typically last 25 to 30 years, while wood lasts 10 to 25 years. Consider replacing your railing if you see cracking, warping, or wood rot.
Do you need a permit to install or replace deck railing?
Most cities require a permit and inspection for installing or replacing deck railing to make sure it’s built to code. Check local regulations for specific instructions.
Getting quotes from deck railing installers
Before hiring a local deck remodel contractors, remember to:
Compare at least 3 estimates from companies with 5+ years of experience.
Make sure the company is licensed, insured, and bonded.
Read reviews on HomeGuide and Google.
Get a written estimate and contract before work starts.
Avoid the lowest quotes, which may suggest low standards.
Never pay in full until the project is complete.
Questions to ask
Ask the right questions to choose the best service provider:
How long have you been installing deck railing?
Can I see pictures of your past work?
Can you share a list of references?
Should I cover my landscaping or furniture during installation?
Will you need to reschedule if there’s inclement weather?
How long will this project take?
Will this job need any permits, and if so, will you handle them?
Does this estimate include materials, labor, and cleanup?
Do you offer a warranty, and if so, what does it cover?