Are you dreaming of a deck or patio? Do you have a specific idea in mind or are you simply dreaming of a comfortable outdoor space where you can relax and enjoy the fresh air? No matter what your current plan, there are some important things you should keep in mind when building your new deck or patio.
WIth the right information and the right mindset, you can create a world-class deck or patio that the whole family can enjoy for years…
What Will Your Deck or Patio Be Used For?
The first thing you should consider is what your deck or patio will be used for. Be honest with yourself; will you use it every week for outdoor grilling, or are you more likely to use it on Fourth of July and maybe on Memorial Day? Are you going to host outdoor parties with dozens of friends and family members, or are you more likely to have small gatherings with less than six people? Are you going to grill and eat dinner in your new space or are you going to use it for early morning coffee? Having a clear, honest assessment of how you will use the deck or patio will help you create your dream space.
Understand Your Deck Material Options
You also need a strong understanding of the basic materials for deck building or patio construction. While there are different variations of each, there are three basic materials used to create the vast majority of decks and several for patios…
The classic, primary choice for deck-building, wood gives your outdoor area a timeless appearance that looks great for a long time. Cedar is nicer option than pressure-treated lumber. However, the long-term quality and appearance of your deck will depend on the type you choose. You will also need to maintain the deck over the years, as moisture and the freeze/thaw cycle can reduce your deck’s outward looks and inward strength.
Made from wood and plastic fibers mixed, composite decking material is more durable and less prone to rotting and long-term damage than wood. The material sometimes comes with a protective coating to shield the boards, and usually requires special fasteners and screws to hold the unique plastic/wood composite to the framing pylon. Although composite lumber does not require regular staining and sealing, it will need cleaning on a regular basis.
PVC decking material is made from plastic and other synthetic materials that has been formed into boards. It usually has a wood-like finish to replicate natural materials and give the deck a classic look. It is far more long-lasting and requires almost no maintenance, outside of regular cleaning. Although it can fade, PVC decking comes in a wide variety of colors and finishes and generally holds its color for decades. It is important to note, however, that PVC decking expands and contracts (and therefore moves) more than other deck materials.
Create or Use Natural Shade Whenever Possible
Whether your deck is made from wood, composite, or PVC, you want to do your best to keep the sun off of the material. This will not only protect your deck from long-term fading, it will also help you stay comfortable on hot days, allowing you to get more enjoyment from your outdoor living space.
So how can you add shade? First of all, consider what side of the house you are building on. Is it possible to build your deck in an area where the home provides shade? You may also want to position the deck so it is built under or near trees. Of course, you could always build a canopy or pergola to provide comfort, sun protection, and a touch of classic style.
Plan for a Great View
When creating a plan for your deck or patio, take into consideration the view. Creating a deck that gives you a view of the sunset or the sunrise is sure you give you more enjoyment from the entire area. Try to avoid building in a location where all you can see is the neighbor’s house; instead, work with your deck or patio contractor to create a space where the best possible view is exposed.
Go for Multiple Levels When Possible
It’s a great way to enhance the overall appearance and character of the deck: levels. Consider having a raised or lowered section on the deck, which will give it a more three-dimensional feeling. For example, you could raise a corner of the deck for an outdoor eating area. Another option is to lower one section and add comfortable, plush furniture, creating an outdoor lounge.
Link the Yard and the Deck
Having a transitional space where the deck meets the yard is a great way to enhance the visual appeal of the entire home exterior. Rather than stepping straight from deck to grass, add some stone pavers or brick material to provide a smooth, stylish transition. Stone and designer concrete patio pavers or stones seem to always look great next to a wood (or synthetic) deck, and a deck-to-patio combination is a timeless style.
Use the Existing Home as Inspiration
You don’t want to necessarily copy the home’s color or design theme, but building a deck that complements the home’s siding or outdoor theme will go a long way to a great deck. While the deck is a separate outdoor area, it should also look like an extension of the home.
How can this be done? Well, the simple answer is to look at materials. If you have a stone face on the front of your house, maybe you could incorporate some stone into the deck, such as around the footings or around the edges. You should also consider the size and shape of your home. If your home is a flat, single-story ranch home, a deck that maintains this profile will be attractive, but the same flat, single-level deck will look out of place next to an ornate Victorian home with tall pillars and decorative trim.
When you are ready for a deck that will look great and give you years of enjoyment, contact the team at New Outlooks Construction.
With years of experience in construction and remodeling, we know what it takes to create the perfect deck or patio for you and your family!