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Cedar Works Review

Friday, December 9th

2022 Playhouse Reviews

Cedar Works Review 4.5 Star Rating

Cedar Works

4.5 Star Rating
  • Infinite number of designs you can create
  • Options for indoor and outdoor play
  • Prices depend on the elements you select, usually $2,500+
  • Earth-friendly, kid-friendly materials
  • 10% of purchases go towards charitable causes focused on children and the environment
  • Warranty covers 1-2 years on accessories and 5-10 years on structural cedar
  • Made in Maine
  • "A+" rated by the BBB
  • In business for over 40 years

Any playhouse you buy from CedarWorks is going to be gorgeous - and spendy. The company is based in Maine and makes all of their playsets to order; there are literally thousands of designs you can choose from, or create your own from scratch, incorporating every element you've ever dreamed of. Want to see a starry sky in the dome of your playhouse? Want your kids to be able to swing like monkeys and climb like mountain goats? Done and done here - for over 40 years, earning an "A+" from the Better Business Bureau.

Generous warranty on long-lasting cedar

All of CedarWorks products are made with rot-resistant, naturally splinter-free, maintenance-free Northern White Cedar. You can choose to stain the wood if you like; otherwise, it will weather to a more silver-gray over time. At that point, you can wash the playhouse with a bleach/water solution to brighten it and eliminate any mildew. Depending on the playset you choose, you'll get either one or two years of warranty coverage on the accessories, and five or ten years on the structural cedar.

Thousands of playhouse styles

Shopping for a playhouse is a little different on the CedarWorks site, compared with your experience on other retailers' stores. Start by choosing whether you're looking for an indoor or outdoor playset. Next, select a style; for example, on outdoor playhouses, you can go for Architectural, Classic, or Rustic. Then, you can click on "See Examples" to view some of the designs on offer here. There are a LOT: over 1200 in the Classic category alone. However, you'll have to sign in with an email address and zip code to see pricing, which isn't our favorite way to shop.

Take a quiz to zero in on the best-matching playhouse

Another option is to take CedarWorks' quiz. Choose a style, size, age range of the kids who will be using the playhouse, the desired shape, any activities you'd like to incorporate (like swinging, sliding, climbing), if you'd like it to be natural or colorful, and you'll be taken to a computer mock-up of the set that best fits what you selected. Not quite what you were thinking? Click the "See Another" button until you spot one that's a closer match.

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$42k for the most expensive model here

Because of the bespoke nature of these playhouses, there's no way to tell you exactly what you'll spend on yours. For grins and giggles, we went into the Architectural category and moved the price slider as far to the right as it would go. Voila: CedarWorks' most costly example was the Architectural 1290 (if you want to enter the number and see for yourself), priced at an oh-so-jaw-dropping $42,040. Honestly, this playset is like something you'd see at a nice playground or an upscale daycare center, with three slides, a tire swing, three bridge-connected towers, you name it. In fact, with most of the playhouses sold here, you might have a hard time keeping the neighborhood kids from thinking your yard is a park.

Hands-on ordering process

Expect to work closely with CedarWorks' staff when you purchase one of their playhouses. When you've created a design or selected a previously-made one, you'll have to click to request a quote with shipping fees and a delivery timeframe. According to shopper feedback, that process is pleasant and the employees make sure they're keeping you up to date with delivery timeframes and any installation options you've chosen.

Check them out on social media

We encourage you to take a look at CedarWorks' Facebook page and other social media channels. It's a great way to see some of their designs in real life, plus the comments from the people who bought them. They're almost universally glowing praise, by the way.

Expensive but well worth it

Although the price tag for a CedarWorks playhouse may be out of range for some shoppers, we still give this company one of our highest recommendations. There's no doubt that you'll get more life out of these all-cedar playsets than anything made of plastic or a less-sturdy wood, and the craftsmanship here is hard to match. This is an investment in thousands of hours of healthy playtime, and we think it's well worth it to see if a CedarWorks playhouse is an option for your yard.

Where Can You Buy the Best Playhouses?

A playhouse can be a simple, inexpensive way to keep a toddler occupied for a few hours in a pop-up structure in the living room - or a sturdy, wooden structure that might last long enough to give your children and later your grandchildren years of happy memories. From pirates to princesses, kitchens to caves, the adventures provided by playhouses are only limited by one's imagination.

Your first consideration when buying a playhouse is where it will be used. Obviously you won't want to buy a cardboard design for use outdoors, but it could be exactly the thing for a rainy day inside. If it's going to be set up outside, you'll want to choose a playhouse that can withstand the elements where you live, from snow to sunshine, and that fits the space you have in mind.

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Playhouse FAQ

Playhouses are used for having fun! They are a place where children can make memories and use their imagination. They might pretend to be adults and make meals, take care of babies, and have sleepovers with siblings or friends. Playhouses often look like mini replicas of real homes and can be as simple or fancy as you want them to be. The selection available online for children's playhouses is extremely impressive.
It's not uncommon to put a children's playhouse in your backyard or playroom. As long as you have plenty of space and a good area for adult supervision when necessary, a playhouse could really go anywhere. Just make sure it's on level ground to ensure doors can open freely so that kids can play safely!
The simple answer is that playhouses should be big enough for children to easily walk in and out and play inside without feeling too constrained. Most people don't have an area in or outside of their house for a giant playhouse, so it just needs to be big enough to play comfortably. The technical answer is that some experts say playhouses should be between 50 and 100 square feet with a maximum wall height of 6 feet.
When buying a playhouse, you could either go with a wood exterior or an all-weather durable plastic. Wood is easy to paint and customize whereas plastic won't show as much wear and tear overtime like dents, paint chips, or scratches. When deciding what you want your playhouse to be made of, consider the weather in your area, how hard your kids will be on it, and if it will be inside or outside. You also might decide just based on the style.
Playhouses can be expensive if you want your children to have a mini mansion in the backyard! If you want a multi-level, fully accessorized playhouse, you can easily spend a few thousand dollars. This is definitely not necessary though. You can get a fun, long-lasting playhouse your kids will love for barely over $150. The end cost will really be determined by the style and size of the playhouse you choose.
Playhouses are most commonly used by kids between the ages of 1 and 12. But let's be honest, adults have a blast playing with children in the playhouses too! They are a staple "toy" that everyone can enjoy and they'll entertain children for hours on end. Whether you have boys or girls, playhouses are one of the most fun purchases you'll ever make for your kids.
Most retailers allow you to return playhouses within 30 days if it is in new condition. However, you'll probably pay hefty shipping costs that might deter you from deciding to send the playhouse back. If it comes damaged or has missing parts, you'll be able to exchange it for a new playhouse at the expense of the company you purchased the playhouse from.
Playhouses are built to last for years! It's not uncommon for parents to buy a playhouse for their children and hang onto it for their grandchildren to use as well. As long as it is well taken care of, your playhouse will probably be around longer than you will, and the memories too! It's a purchase that will be worth the cost tenfold.
Compare the Best Reviews

Continued from above...

The next factor in your decision is the age range of the kids who will be using the playhouse. A huge climber with rock walls, rope swings and a lookout tower will be the envy of the big kids in your neighborhood, but if the child(ren) in your life can't quite walk yet, it's not going to be the right fit.

Finally, are you looking for a playhouse that's permanently installed or something that can be moved - around the yard or across the country? The most long-lasting, packed-with-features playhouses usually require you to set them up with the expectation that that's where they'll stay.

There are so many places you can buy a playhouse online, from your trusted home improvement store's website to family-owned companies that have been making sturdy wood playhouses (complete with window boxes and porches) for decades. Where should you start? Follow this list to help guide your decision:

  • Playhouse Type. As we said, you may be looking for a small plastic design for a toddler or a structure that can be used by kids of all ages. While some online retailers offer both kinds, you'll usually find that it's an either-or situation.
  • Selection. How many playhouse designs does the retailer have to choose from? Are they all in stock?
  • Delivery. Will you pay for shipping? How long will it take for your playhouse to be delivered? On the custom-made wood styles, it's not uncommon for it to take a month or more for it to be made to order and trucked to the destination.
  • Refunds/Returns. It's not all that common for people to want a refund or return on their playhouse orders, but it happens (especially for the lower-priced models). What is the store's policy?
  • Reputation. What do previous customers say about the playhouses and the company's fulfillment on orders? Can you browse reviews or see user-submitted photos of the playhouses in different, real settings? Can you expect a friendly, professional response if you need to reach out for some reason?

To help you add the most fun to your basement or backyard, TopConsumerReviews.com has evaluated and ranked today's most popular retailers of playhouses. We're sure this information will make it easy to get the cutest cabin or climber for the children in your life!

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