Pressure Treated Pine
Pressure treated pine is the most popular and affordable decking option. Built from chemically treated pine, this material is engineered to decrease the rate of wood decay and resist insect damage. After the wood dries out, painting or staining every 2-3 years gives the surface an extra layer of protection against the elements. Unfortunately, because pressure treated lumber is so inexpensive, it is very prone to shrinking, warping and splitting as it dries out. Treated decks tend to range from $35-$60 per square foot, depending upon the dimensions and details of the job.
Western Red Cedar
A step up from treated pine, Western Red Cedar is known for its red color and distinct smell and can be a beautiful option for improving your yard. Cedar also has some natural resistance to rot and insect damage. It is less prone to warping than pine, but will still tend to split and crack as it dries out. Painting or staining helps to prolong the life and performance of a cedar deck. Cedar decks tend to range from $55 per square foot and upward, depending on the dimensions and details of the job.