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Money-Saving Mum Makes Garden Decking For £100 With Free Pallets, Saving £900

22 April 2022, 0:00 pm
  • Steph Medlen, 37, hunted at local warehouses for free pallets
  • She then broke them up, screwed them down and painted them grey
  • Steph estimates she saved £900 by taking on the task herself rather than outsourcing it

Getting a professional to supply and install decking in your back garden can cost thousands.

But money-saving Steph Medlen, 37, a mum of four from Bury, managed to transform her back garden with beautiful grey decking for just £100.

Steph hunted at local warehouses for free pallets, which she then broke up, screwed down and painted grey.

Steph estimates she saved £900 by taking on the task herself rather than outsourcing it.

Steph told money-saving Facebook group DIY On A Budget UK: “My brother suddenly passed away in November 2019.

“He loved being in my garden, so I decided I would do my back garden in memory of him and got my kids involved in it.

“They all helped even down to the smallest boy.

"The wood was free from different places so it didn’t cost me very much at all.

"I went to places like warehouses and asked for pallets and my stepdad collected them for me.

"I must have had about 30 pallets for free in total.

"I initially started with just the bench.

“Then I went round looking for more pallets.

"I laid the pallets down, then split the pallets for just the planks of wood and screwed them down so we had no gaps in the pallets.

“We broke the pallets up with a crowbar and hammer.

“Some were easier than others!

"I always get some sort of tool for my birthday or Christmas and I got something that cuts through nails to save some time with breaking the pallets.

"I had to cut some pallets down with the jigsaw.

"Each plank of wood was then screwed down.

“We sanded the table and bench and I bought some waterproof memory foam dog beds from Home Bargains to sit on.

“They are great because I can take the covers off and wash them.

“They were £8 each and I needed three of them.

"Once I’d done the pallet work I then painted it grey.

“Being a single mum with health problems means we can’t go far so I bought some artificial grass too and did that.

“The boys can then still play outside and have a paddling pool without all the mud coming in the house.

"The sun is in my back garden till around 3pm so the bench is perfect.

“My next job is to finish the lights so it’s cosy in the evening.

"I do already have some solar powered lights that were very cheap.

"This was a lockdown project and the beauty of it is I can keep adding to it.

"I taught my now 18-year-old son how to use a jigsaw, drill and sander.

“When he was feeling frustrated with his mental health he would go in the garden and break up some pallets and let off some steam.

"My youngest boys now love to play outside, I know they are safe and it’s free.

"I also paid for paints and rugs which I got for £10 each from Home Bargains.

“We can now sit out in the garden and enjoy family times and soon have barbecues and my brother will be with us in spirit.

"I have my own physical and mental health problems so doing my garden was like my escape.

“It has not been an easy job but was a rewarding job to do.

“It would have cost me near to £1,000 for it to be done professionally with decking.

“It cost me £100 in total. It’s a great achievement because we don’t have a lot of money.

"If I can do this project on my own anyone can do it!”

Tom Church, co-founder of LatestDeals.co.uk, comments: “Wow, well done to Steph for this brilliant project. I can’t believe it cost her just £100 to do!

“I love that she reused old pallets destined for the skip. This isn’t just great for her bank balance, but for the environment too!"

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