If you are lucky enough to have a backyard with trees that can accommodate a tree house, you have the opportunity to create a special hideaway for your child. You can build it from scratch, or buy a tree house kit to make things easy. The important thing is to make sure the finished tree house is stable and safe.
Planning a Tree House
Look around your backyard and find a suitable location for your tree house. Find an area that is flat with sturdy trees nearby. Get rid of any shrubs and tree branches that might impinge on the tree house, keeping in mind that shrubs and trees grow larger over time. When you pick out a good spot, pay a visit to the local building inspector's office to find out if there are any building codes that the tree house has to conform to. There may be restrictions on the kind of steps you can use, or railings you can install. Remember that these rules are in place for safety.
You can find plans for a tree house online, or you can find a kit at a store that sells items for additions and repair of the home. My research indicates that it is less expensive to get the plans and build the tree house yourself to save some money. It is a good idea to think ahead and buy all the tools you will need in addition to all the materials before you even start. That way you will have everything you need when you start to construct the tree house.
Building the Tree House
Clear away any debris in the area where you will build the tree house. Start by laying the floorboards close together as a foundation. Then build the tree house according to your plans, or install the tree house kit by following the directions carefully.
Adding Some Finishing Touches
When the basic tree house is built, it is time to think about adding some cool finishing touches that your child will love. Instead of using stairs or a ladder for access, think about installing a rope bridge if you think your child can handle it. You can put a deck outside of the actual tree house, but if you do be sure to install a railing with the rails close together so a small tot will not slip through to the ground. A swing and a slide are other additions that children love to make the tree house a special place. And of course, make it feel like home by adding a welcome mat, flower pots and a mail box.