Childhood is a fleeting time for both your kids and yourself as a parent. That’s why you try hard to squeeze in as much fun and guidance as you can. When it comes to the former, only a few things can beat the enchanting enjoyment of a backyard treehouse. If you’ve decided to take on the ultimate adventure of building a treehouse, here are five things you need to remember before you start.
Treehouse needs a tree
Before anything else, you need to scan your backyard for a candidate tree. Deteriorating gum trees and saplings may not be able to sustain the weight of your project. Go for a big, strong tree that has a firm hold on the ground. The last thing you want is for the whole thing to crumble down while your kids are playing.
Permission is easier than forgiveness
After you’ve found a sturdy tree, you can’t start building yet. You should consult your local council and find out what permits you need to get for your project. You might also want to commission an arborist report to determine the strength properties of your chosen tree. It may be a requirement by your council. If not, it will at least give you that extra peace of mind.
Be warned, skipping this step may result in your local council ordering the demolition of your precious treehouse even after you’ve finished construction. This ABC article details a similar story in Mosman Park where the local council ordered a cubby to be demolished after a number of complaints from the neighbours.
Planning is key
Like any other building, your treehouse needs a comprehensive structural plan. If you’re uncomfortable doing this on your own, consult a professional. It would help if you’ve already made even a rough draft of what your final project will look like when it’s built. Consider the height and access points of your tree house. If you have younger kids, a lower tree house may be the way to go. The fact that you’re building them a cubby will surely delight them even if it doesn’t overlook the whole neighbourhood (see previous item).
Make it strong
A sturdy tree will mean nothing if your materials are weak. Make sure you get the strongest materials possible for your treehouse. Chances are, you’ll be using timber for your project. Consider their weight and their availability in your area. If you’re unsure, talk to timber merchants to help you out. Just describe what you intend to do. Showing them your drafted plan may also help.
Tap the Pros
The last thing to decide is whether you want to take on the project yourself or you want to hire professionals to do it for you. If you’re on a budget and you feel confident enough, you can start building. However, if you think you’re better off spending a little more, there are a lot of builders out there that construct tree houses professionally. Find the best one that fits your plans, your timeline and your budget.
Building a treehouse is one of the coolest things parents can do for their children. After reading through this article, hopefully you’ve discovered that the task doesn’t have to be that daunting. Good luck and have fun!