If you’re thinking about adding a deck to your home, whether it be your existing property or new construction, there’s little wonder why! Not only will you enjoy this breezy outdoor living space, but depending on your region and the likelihood of selling in the future, a deck can add value to your home. So make sure you build a great one! It’s one of the most cost-effective expansions you can make to a house, and that’s all the more reason to ensure that you do it the best way possible. Here are some things to keep in mind as you think about adding a deck to your home.
All kinds of homes can benefit from the addition of a deck, but the nature of the most appropriate deck will vary. For example, a home on a beautifully sloped lot naturally accommodates a deck, in both form and function. The grade of the land creates a raised position for outdoor living, which is perfect for taking in views and also allows the deck to connect to the ground with stairs. Many homes on sloped lots appear single-story in the front, but two-story in the back, and incorporating an egress by way of a deck allows people to access the yard without having to go through the front door and walk around the house. Homes with walk-out basements and/or drive-under garages easily incorporate decks over these features. Looking for home deck services? Look no further! Hitch Property Constructions has you covered.
A deck is still a great option for homes situated on flatter lots, too. An on-grade deck—that is, one built just above the ground—provides the same exterior living option that today’s homeowners love. The land should be cleared and excavated for drainage depending on the climate, and it might even require a sloped concrete slab to make sure water doesn’t pool just under the wooden boards. There should be space for air to circulate to minimize the risk of rot.
10 Things to Consider When Building a Deck
There’s a lot of planning and decision-making that goes into designing and building an outdoor deck. For starters, you’ll need to determine what size deck you’d like, establish a budget, select material, and determine whether you want to build it yourself or hire a professional.
Here are ten important things to consider so you can avoid mistakes before planning, designing, and building a deck.
The Deck’s Purpose and Function
If you live in a climate that’s warm several months out of the year, a deck may be the answer to extending the enjoyment you get from outdoor living. Decide how you’d like to use the deck. Once you have a vision for its purpose and function, it’ll be easier to design. Here are a few ways your deck could function in your yard:
- For entertaining
- For outdoor dining
- As a pool or spa surround
- For outdoor privacy
- As a place for container gardening close to the house
The Deck’s Location
Sometimes it’s apparent where a deck should go, but other times, there may be more than one possible location. If that’s the case, how you want your deck to function will determine which spot will be ideal for its location. In addition, think about these considerations when determining a deck’s location:
- Scaling the deck to the size of your property
- Tracking microclimates that will affect your deck’s level of comfort
- Placing the deck in the sun and shade for comfort
- Determining wind patterns that can affect usage
- Maximizing scenic views
- Creating privacy from neighbours
- Having easy access from deck to house
The Budget for Building a Deck
Your budget will determine the size, design, and materials of your deck. Add in permits and labour if you’re going to have it designed and built by a professional. Also consider the extras that you hope to have on your decks, such as flower boxes, railings, built-in seating, and lighting.
Can You Build It Yourself?
A deck costs less if you build the deck yourself. Simple platform decks have a clean, classic appeal, and they’re easy to build. Hitch Property Constructions has a wide range of decking services Melbourne services But if you want something more detailed than a simple platform, it’s a project for an experienced DIYer. Consider whether you want the deck built quickly or whether you can take the time to do it yourself. Be honest about whether you want to spend hours sawing and nailing wood or whether you prefer to hire a contractor or subcontractor.
Know Deck Material Options
Wood is not the only available decking material available. More materials are on the market to help you build a deck that needs less maintenance than wood. Choices for decking include wood, plastic, or metal:
- Pressure-treated woods which contain wood and preservatives for weather-resistance, such as pine, cedar, and redwood, are known for their traditional look of warmth.
- Premium hardwoods, such as teak, ipe, and Brazilian species, are extremely durable.
- Composite decking materials made of recycled wood fibres and plastics can be easy to maintain but a bit more expensive than wood.
- PVC or plastic planks resist rot and hold up well to harsh weather, but they are costly, may feel spongy underfoot, and tend to get very hot under the sun.
- Aluminium decking offers significant slip resistance which is ideal for wet locations, but it’s costly.
Consider the Deck’s Style
The style of your deck may be dictated by the design of your house. A deck should complement your home rather than compete with its architecture. For example, a round or curved deck with intricately carved railings may look out of place on some homes but may look better on other styles. Follow the lines, proportions and architecture of your house, so it’s a natural and seamless extension of your home.
Include Deck Lighting
There are numerous ideas for deck lighting. Lighting gives a deck a certain festive and romantic ambience while adding a level of safety. The amount of lighting and the types of fixtures (for example, wired or solar) will affect the design and budget of your deck. Here are types of deck lights and locations to consider:
- Recessed step lights
- Path lights
- Overhead lights
- Wall or post-mounted lights
- Landscape spotlights
- Outdoor kitchen lighting
You might decide to add more functionality into your deck. Built-ins give a deck a rich and customized look, as well. Storage on a deck might be designed as benches with hinged tops that lift, shelving, or deck boxes. Here are some items you may choose to store on your deck:
- Garden tools and supplies
- Children’s outdoor toys
- Outdoor patio cushions
- Outdoor furniture and accessories
Think About Privacy
There’s not always a perfect spot for a deck. Sometimes, you’ll have to settle for a spot that’s not as private as you’d like. If your deck is visible to neighbours or you can easily see their yard, consider adding privacy screening to block the views. There are plenty of privacy screen ideas. A screen can be built onto the deck, or you can use plantings as a living privacy fence.
Know the Building Codes
Before lifting a hammer, call town hall to find out the building codes and legal procedures, you need to follow for building a deck. You may need your design approved by your town. City and state laws and permit restrictions vary for residential structure additions or remodelling projects, so do your homework before buying materials for your deck’s project. Professional deck designers and builders know the local codes and regulations and will typically take care of the logistics for you.
The Benefits of Building a Deck For Your House
Adding a deck to your home may seem like a daunting task. You need to consider project cost, your space budget (yard space versus deck or patio space), and so much else. But what value do you get out of adding a deck? Do the pros outweigh the cons? Check out our Melbourne decking services services here.
Nobody can really answer that question but you, of course. But while we can’t tell you definitively whether you should add a deck or not, we can at least give you a good idea of the value you can get out of doing so. And the benefits of adding a deck? They’re pretty substantial.
We’ve come up with a list of eight solid points that you can safely drop into the “add a deck” column. And depending on your budget, your yard, your needs, and your tastes, we think the benefits of building one will outweigh not doing so for a great many homeowners.
So, without further ado, let’s explore eight reasons why you should add a deck, shall we?
Decks Improve the Value of Your Home
As a general rule (if not a universal one), a professionally-done addition to your home will almost always improve the value of your home. And if you’re thinking your current digs may not be your forever home, adding a deck can bolster your resale value substantially, depending on the quality of the deck and the spacial compromise you’ve made with your yard.
Decks Add Functionality
Deck and patio space offers more functionality to your home with a slew of outdoor living benefits that you’ll find useful all year round. Did you ever find yourself wanting to grill some food in the winter months? That may not be an easily-accomplished feat in an uneven snowy yard, but a deck with a roof or awning? No problem!
Decks Add Livable Space
Speaking of functionality, your new deck will increase your home’s livable space, too. You’ll have new places to work, play, and enjoy family time, with more room to store your outdoor belongings as well.
Decks Improve Yard Aesthetics
There are many different ways to beautify your yard; gardens, a nice pergola, some privacy fencing, new grass … there are lots of options available to you. But adding a deck to your home can add to your yard’s aesthetic qualities as well. The visual quality of a nicely-finished wood deck can turn a plain yard into a palatial one with some planning.
Decks are Low Maintenance
Unlike most of the rooms in your house, your deck should be fairly low maintenance, requiring less effort to keep nice. Whereas expanding your kitchen, for instance, might increase your cleaning time, you won’t finding yourself sweeping or washing the deck on a constant basis. They usually won’t require much other upkeep, either. A nice weatherproofing stain should last years.
Decks are Relatively Inexpensive
When compared to other additions to your home, the cost to add a deck is typically substantially low. On average, decks cost a little over $7,200 to construct. That’s cheaper than the average $30,000 spent on hiring professionals for kitchen additions or renovations. It’s even cheaper than the $8,000 average cost of doing those additions or renovations yourself. Some decks can cost as little as $2000 or even less build, while the bigger fancier ones can run upward of $18,000 or more.
Decks Provide Peace and Quiet
We’ve all experienced those moments where you wish you could just get away, even if only for a short time. A deck, patio, or porch offers you such an escape; you can go outside for a moment, decompress, and then go back inside to tackle whatever issue is stressing you out.
With a growing number of Americans working from home these days, many have found that on a nice day, a deck can double as a peaceful, quiet outdoor office space, too. Lounging outside with an iced tea and a laptop is just about the most pleasant way of staying productive there is.
Decks are a Lot of Fun!
Imagine sitting out on your deck on a cool summer morning, sipping your coffee while watching birds peck bread crumbs off the dewy grass. For some of you, that’s all you’ll need to hear to want to build a deck.
Social gatherings can be greatly enhanced with a nice deck, too. You and your family and friends playing card games while listening to some music and grilling some tasty food, with all the comforts of your home just through the door? That’s pretty much the textbook definition of good living, isn’t it?
Should You Build a Deck Yourself, or Hire Pros?
If these reasons to add a deck to your home seem enticing, you might be wondering if it’s better to build it yourself or hire contractors to do it for you. And the answer to that question is going to largely depend on how handy and knowledgeable you are.
Building a deck is certainly the sort of DIY project that can save you a lot of money versus hiring professionals. Just be wary of trying to do it yourself. Home improvement TV shows and tutorial videos found on the web can seem really enticing, and some of you reading this can likely handle it yourself without an issue. Just know your limitations and take the time to consider whether or not this is the sort of project that is safely within your wheelhouse.