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Costing your pergola project - Cost Guide

Last Updated Sep 14, 2018 · Written by Rob Schneider


A pergola can be a great home improvement, but how much does a pergola cost? Costing your pergola project can be difficult because every pergola is different. They can range in cost from $500 for a simple pergola to $50,000 for a large and elaborate pergola.

  1. What kind of pergola do you want?
  2. How much does a pergola cost?
  3. How much does a metal pergola cost?
  4. Costing a pergola roof and flooring
  5. How much does a custom made pergola cost?

What kind of pergola do you want?

The first thing to do is decide what type of pergola you want and how large it is going to be. Originally, pergolas were detached structures with no roofs. They were covered with vines and provided cool shade in the summer. Since then, the definition of a pergola has expanded and can include a pergola attached to the house or freestanding and it can have a floor and roofing.alt

A good place to start is on our Pergola Design Ideas pages. They show a variety of pergolas including pergolas attached to the house and freestanding pergolas. Some have roofs and some are more traditional and just have timber beams. Some have flat or skillion roofs and some have gabled roofs. Decide which type of pergola you want and then you can start costing your pergola.

How much does a pergola cost?*

How much is a pergola going to cost? As mentioned above, a pergola can start at $500, but that is for a basic pergola without a roof or flooring. More realistically, a pergola may start at $2000 and go up to $50,000 for a large and elaborate pergola. What can you get for $2000? The pergola will probably be made of treated pine and not have a roof or flooring.

To get an idea of the cost of a pergola, pergola kits are available. They might cost:

  • $1400 for a pergola that's attached to the house. It will be made of aluminium and come in basic colours
  • A softwood pergola with a peaked roof may cost $2500 to $3000
  • A pergola kit with an opening roof might cost $6500

Kits can be slightly more expensive than building a pergola from scratch, but kits are designed for DIY installation, which saves you the cost of hiring a pergola builder to install a pergola for you. If you decide to have a kit professionally installed, a pergola builder can install a kit faster than making a pergola from scratch. Some costs for timber pergolas might be:

  • $2250 if it's made from treated pine and has no roof
  • $2600 if it's made from hardwood and has no roof

Most Australians want to have a roof on their pergola and some type of decking or a slab and pavers. These are extra costs and will add to the cost of a pergola.

How much does a metal pergola cost?*

Metal pergolas may cost:

  • $185m2 for a flat roof
  • $550m2 for a gabled roof
  • $700m2 or more for a more complex design that requires custom work

alt

The price may be higher for Colorbond pergolas, which come in a variety of colours. A metal pergola may not be a traditional pergola, but if it is made from quality materials, it can last a long time and not require sealing every few years. A timber pergola may also need replacement timbers from time to time, but if timber is what you want, it can make a beautiful and more traditional pergola. Metal and Colorbond pergolas are worth thinking about and some come in kit form and can be easily installed.

Costing* a pergola roof and flooring

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A pergola can be made up of many components:

  • Some have decking, a slab or rest on flat ground
  • They can be made of timber, aluminium or PVC
  • A pergola can have variety of roofing materials

Some roofing materials for pergolas include polycarbonate, aluminium, thatch, a shade sail or a retractable awning. These come at different costs:

  • Polycarbonate starts at $38 for a 2.4 metre length or $68 for a 3.0 metre length
  • The cheapest Colorbond roofing is $18 per square metre, but a better choice may be two sided Colorbond, which costs $24 per square metre
  • Thatch costs between $14 and $22.50 for a single sheet and synthetic thatch is also available
  • Shade sails can be an inexpensive way to provide shade
  • Retractable awnings can be more expensive, but allow you to let the sun in or provide shade and protection from the rain.

What type of flooring do you need? If you want decking, have a look at How Much Does Decking Cost? Decking ranges in price from $200m2 for treated pine decking to $320m2 or more for hardwood decking. If you want composite decking, it will cost around $350m2.altIf you want your pergola on a slab, it will cost between $75m2 and $100m2, but you will probably also want pavers. Depending on the pavers you want, you can pay $45 to $60m2 for concrete pavers or up to $100m2 for travertine, flagstone or granite pavers.

How much does a custom made pergola cost?*

Pergola builders can make almost any design you like, but the pergola could cost between $20,000 and $50,000 depending on its size and the complexity of the design. For example, curved roofing made of timber will cost more than a gabled roof and a gabled roof will cost more than a flat or skillion roof.altIs $20,000 outside your budget? A pergola doesn't have to be a large structure and you may be able to have a custom built pergola for under $20,000. It just needs to be large enough to relax comfortably. The furniture in the pergola will make it comfortable and you may want to install electricity to use the pergola at night. A pergola doesn't need walls, but if your property adjoins a neighbouring property, you can install one or two walls for privacy. The walls needn't be expensive and can be slatted or solid depending on the level of privacy you want. Slatted walls will allow air flow, but solid walls will provide more privacy.

Any pergola will be a great home improvement and that includes an inexpensive pergola with a flat or skillion roof. All you need is shade and comfortable outdoor furniture to make a pergola a haven worth having. Add a little landscaping and any pergola can be a beautiful addition to the backyard.alt

If your budget allows, you can make a more detailed pergola with a gabled roof, but don't let the more expensive pergolas on our Pergola Ideas pages put you off. A pergola is designed to provide shade and shelter from the rain and even a simple pergola can be a perfect addition to your backyard. Just choose comfortable furniture for the pergola and you will be happy under the shade of a pergola, no matter how much or little it costs.alt

Of course, if you have a more liberal budget, you can create a large and elaborate pergola and you might find yourself spending more time in the pergola than in your house. Any pergola can be a welcome addition to a house and no matter what your budget is, consider installing a pergola against your house or in an open spot in your garden. You won't regret having a pergola to go to on a warm summer's day or even in the winter. A pergola with a roof is an all season place to relax, revive and restore your senses. Get quotes from pergola builders and they can help you stay within your budget.

*Costs and prices in this article are indicative and should only be used as a guide. They also vary locally and are subject to market forces.

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