You have a decision to make.
Whether you’re remodeling your own place, taking on an outdoor DIY project, or designing an eye-catching home for a new client, your railing choice has serious implications—and one of the biggest questions you have to consider is how your desired railing fits into your budget.
If you have your sights set on cable railing, several factors could impact your costs. Every home is unique, so there’s no hard estimate on the “average” cable railing project.
Luckily, we have good news: Estimating your own costs is easy! Just keep these four elements in mind:
1. Perimeter Measurements
Think about the area where you need cable railing. Is it a rectangular deck? Is it your front stairway? Have you measured everything? The more distance you have to cover, the more expensive your project will be.
Before you start estimating costs, it’s important to get an exact measurement of how many feet you have to cover. You need specific numbers to determine not just how many feet of cable you’ll need, but also the number of posts required to make your project a success.
Start by measuring the perimeter of your project to determine how many feet of railing you'll need. Image Source
2. Railing Height
The desired height of your railing determines how many rows of cable you’ll need. Standard height measurements are 36” or 42” — but cable railing is customizable to your needs. Your local code requirements, your railing’s location, and your personal preferences can all influence railing height.
Once you’ve determined the best height, you’ll have a better idea of your cost estimate. Keep in mind that the taller your railing is, the more lines of cable you’ll need to ensure its safety—which will ultimately impact your costs.
Determine the height of your railing. The greater your rail height, the more cable runs you'll need to be within code requirements. Image Source
3. Material Preference
Because there are so many different materials you can choose when installing cable railing, there’s also a wide range of cost estimates to consider.
When you’re considering what type of railing material will work best for you, you want to choose something that complements the rest of your home or deck—but you should also consider the costs. You can save a lot of money by opting for less expensive materials.
Aluminim or stainless railing are great options for strength and durability, though they're typically more expensive than wood posts with cable infill.
4. Labor Costs
Whether you’re installing cable railing yourself or paying someone to do it for you, time always costs money.
You don’t want to pay for unnecessary work hours—but you also don’t want your installation to be a rush job. It’s important to find the balance between safety and efficiency.
To strike that balance, we recommend checking out one of our many guides and tutorials. These free resources will help you minimize labor costs without sacrificing the success of your installation.
Cable Bullet was designed with DIYers in mind, so you can save time and money with an easy-to-install system.
Can You Afford Cable Railing?
Depending on the factors above, cable railing costs can vary between $40 per linear foot and $180 per linear foot.
The total amount might sound overwhelming, but here’s the truth: When you pay for cable railing, you can save thousands of dollars in maintenance over the years.
We recommend annual maintenance—or biannual maintenance in harsher climates. That means for about 364 days out of the year, you don’t have to worry about your railing at all. Sounds appealing, right?
Before starting any project, check your state and local requirements for railings. The Cable Bullet system meets the International Residental Code (IRC), but some states have additional requirements. For more information, review our terms & conditions.