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Backyard Playgrounds Designs

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June 22, 2005

Building a Backyard Play Structure

By Rhonda Cliett

A child's dream backyard includes a play structure complete with a slide and swings just like the one at the neighborhood park. Once you have made the decision to make your child's dream come true then you have several backyard playgrounds designs from which to select depending on the amount of money and time you can invest.

One of the most economical means of obtaining a backyard play structure is to buy a used one. Since children eventually outgrow their play structures you can often find a used one at a fraction of the cost. Your time investment will require disassembling and reassembling the structure. To make the task of reassembling easier, you should take a photo of the play structure prior to disassembling. Check your newspaper classifieds and once you find one, call immediately since they tend to sell quickly. You should also check to see if your newspaper places their classifieds online. Many times the online version is available sooner than the print version which will give you a leading start.

If you decide to build your own backyard play structure you have many options available. You can build totally from scratch by designing a set of plans, purchasing the material needed, and building the set. This is obviously very labor intensive and probably not the best project for a beginner.

Backyard Playgrounds Designs

Another option is to purchase a kit from a store such as Home Depot or Lowe's. You can purchase a kit for as little as $299 which includes: design options, some accessories, hardware, brackets, and plans. You must separately purchase slides, lumber and the remaining accessories. You can also purchase a complete kit which contains all material including lumber. These options are as labor intensive as the previous option but they take the guesswork out of design and building. The final and most expensive option is to purchase your playground already built.

Whichever backyard playgrounds designs you decide upon you need to make certain that the structure is built safely and that your children know how to safely play on their new play structure. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, each year approximately 205,860 preschool and elementary children receive emergency treatment as the result of injuries sustained on playground equipment. Therefore, when it comes to playground equipment, safety definitely comes before price.

Rhonda Cliett is the owner and founder of Beyond the Apron, a home ownership website for female homeowners. She has written many home improvement and home purchasing articles. Visit Beyond the Apron today and subscribe to their newsletter which is packed with the latest tips and resources for homeowners.

Be sure your dream of giving your child a backyard play structure doesn't turn into a nightmare! Make sure to consider all safety options before you purchase or build a play structure.

Los Angeles, CA

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