How much does Merbau decking cost per m2? [Australia 2023]

May 4, 2023

Merbau's natural resistances, strengths and versatility has made it a popular choice for tradie, landscaper and DIY decking projects. But its recent increase in popularity means a lot of Aussie consumers don't know much about it, how much it costs per square metre, and what alternatives might be available for their deck. In this handy cost guide, we'll explore what Merbau is, where you can get it, and how much it costs. We'll also explore some of the additional costs associated with building a deck or having a deck installed.


What is Merbau?
what is Merbau?

Merbau is a type of hardwood made from the Kwila or Intsia Bijuga tree, which is native to south east Asia, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, and northern Australia.

It is a popular choice for outdoor projects due to its durability, strength, and natural resistance to decay and termites. Merbau is known for its distinctive reddish-brown color, which can deepen over time to a dark brown or black. It is commonly used for outdoor decking, as well as for other outdoor structures such as pergolas, gazebos, and fences.


Why is Merbau so popular in Australia right now?

Merbau decking is a popular choice in Australia for a few reasons. Firstly, it's a hardwoo
d that is naturally durable and resistant to decay, rot, and insect damage, which makes it well-suited for outdoor use. This means that Merbau decking can withstand the harsh Australian climate and weather conditions, including intense sunlight, heavy rain, and strong winds.

Secondly, Merbau decking has an attractive and distinctive reddish-brown color that adds warmth and character to outdoor spaces. Over time, the color can deepen to a darker brown or black, which can give the decking a rich and sophisticated look.

Thirdly, Merbau is a readily available and cost-effective decking option in Australia, which makes it a popular choice among homeowners and builders. It's also relatively easy to work with, which means that it can be cut, shaped, and installed with relative ease.

Finally, Merbau is a sustainable and renewable resource, which means that it can be harvested and replaced without causing long-term damage to the environment. This makes it an environmentally friendly choice for decking and outdoor projects.


How much does it cost compared to other options?
mebrau decking cost

In Australia, the cost of Merbau decking can vary depending on a range of factors such as the grade of the timber, the size and length of the boards, and the supplier. Generally, Merbau decking is considered a popular and cost-effective option for outdoor decking.

On average, the cost of Merbau decking in Australia can range from around $6 to $12 per linear metre. This makes it a mid-range priced decking option, sitting somewhere between the more affordable options like treated pine, which can cost around $3 to $6 per linear metre, and the more expensive hardwoods like Jarrah or Blackbutt, which can cost $20 to $25 per linear metre or more.

It's worth noting that the cost of Merbau decking in Australia can be affected by various factors such as the location of the supplier, the availability of the timber, and the shipping costs if the timber needs to be transported over long distances. Additionally, the quality of the timber can also impact the price, with higher quality Merbau decking generally being more expensive.


Where can I get it?

The first question is whether you want to build your Merbau deck yourself or hire a decking expert to come and build your dream deck for you. If you have the skills to build yourself then you really only need to consider the cost of decking materials and a DIY job will greatly reduce your timber decking costs. You can pick up decking boards, other types of materials and things like decking oil from Bunnings. Your initial costs for materials are likely to be your only cost so you'll quickly have an idea of how much your project will cost.

If you want the help of an expert, you can find one right here on BorisDoes, or reach out to all of the decking professionals in your area by starting a task or requesting a quote. From a basic deck to a beautiful outdoor area as part of a larger and more complex project, BorisDoes can help you find the tradies you need.


So how much does Merbau cost per m2?

We're put together this handy table so you can compare different materials and styles and the costs associated with each. Treated pine has always been considered the cheaper option for outdoor decking, while hardwood and composite deck costs mean they remain the expensive options.


Treated Pine

$180 - $220 per m2 


$280 - $320 per m2 


$320 - $360 per m2 


$350 - $390 per m2 


These estimates reflect the average cost of timber decking, based on material costs plus labour costs. We haven't factored in the cost of other options like an elevated deck, the wide range of recycled timber options that are available, and other material options like concrete decking.


What about additional decking costs?
merbau decking

Depending on where you live, there can be some additional costs associated with a new deck. Most of those additional costs are general in nature, and aren't specific to Merbau decking, but let's have a look at some of them and you can decide whether you need to factor them into your project budget.

  • Council approvals: depending on where you live, the height of your proposed deck, and any structural elements, your new Merbau deck might require a building permit from your local council. If you're not sure, get in contact with them - most councils have planning departments that can provide you with basic advice and guidance.
  • More expensive materials: composite decking can last longer, but some brands and styles can be more expensive. Depending on the composite materials used, composite decking prices can be higher than natural timber options like Merbau. That said, some composite timber decking uses cheaper materials and can be a cost-competitive option.
  • Urgent time-frames: trying to fast-track the construction of your deck can cause a range of problems, including supply issues. Supply chain disruptions are far more likely to impact your project if you're in a rush. Otherwise, routine disruptions can simply be absorbed into your project deadlines. If there's no need to rush and put extra pressure on yourself or your tradies, don't.

Hopefully you can avoid extra or unexpected costs, but understanding what they might be is the first step. Make sure you do your research before starting your project.



Merbau decking is a popular and cost-effective option for outdoor decking in Australia. Despite its middle-of-the-range cost, Merbau decking offers several advantages such as natural durability, resistance to decay and insect damage, an attractive reddish-brown color, and ease of installation. Additionally, Merbau is a renewable resource, which makes it an environmentally friendly choice for decking and outdoor projects.

If you're considering Merbau decking for your outdoor space, it's important to shop around and compare prices from different suppliers to ensure that you're getting a fair price for the quality of the timber. With the right care and maintenance, your Merbau decking can last for many years, providing a beautiful and functional outdoor space for you and your family to enjoy.





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