5 Questions to Ask Before Building Your Deck

Even though summer is coming to a close, that doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of the autumn months and enjoy a bit more of the outside before the winter temperatures set in.

Hopefully, you’ve been enjoying plenty of outdoor time in your yard or garden, taking in the sunlight or hosting barbeques. Maybe you’ve wanted a bit more out of your outdoor space, so you’ve thought about installing a deck.

Decks are like the living rooms of your house, a great place to gather with friends or family, have a nice dinner, or watch the big game coming up.

If you’re thinking about having a deck put in your yard, here are some important things to consider first.

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What Materials Will You Use?

Rest assured, there aren’t going to be as many options as choosing a color for the master bathroom, but it’s still important to sift through the materials to find out which one would be best for you.

There are three types of wood to choose from, which are:

  • Pressure treated wood: Most common and the cheapest, treated with chemicals to prevent termites and rot, has a life of about 15 years.
  • Tropical Hardwood: Dense and durable, wood usually comes pre-treated, comes in a variety of colors, has a life of about 25 years.
  • Redwood or Cedar: Strong defenses against insects and rot, damaged easier over time, lightweight and firm, has a life of about 20 years.

You can also go the composite route, which is a combination of wood and plastic fibers. While it may look like wood, it won’t splinter meaning it’s a great option for those with little ones.

What Will You Use it For?

You might have big ideas for your deck, like BBQs every Saturday and relaxing in the hot tub on Sunday evenings. Perhaps you want to host parties there and be the go-to house when it comes to sporting events.

Think about your future plans and relay them to your contractor. Tell them what you see yourself using the deck for and ask if that may change any plans or materials you may use.

While future plans are always subject to change, it’s a great idea to have one eye turned towards the future and what it may hold.

How Much Maintenance Will it Need?

Just like any other item in your house, your deck is going to need plenty of cleaning and maintenance in order to stay looking great and up to par.

When it comes to wood, it’s going to need to be stained or sealed on a regular basis. Weather, sunlight, and use are going to wear it down over time and making sure you’re protecting the deck is an easy way to ensure you’re getting the most out of it.

So before you start calling contractors or visualizing yourself enjoying your deck, make sure you consider how much maintenance will have to go into it every year.

What Kind of Furniture Will You Use?

One of the best parts about building a deck is you get to build and design the “room” around the furniture. While your kitchen or living room may have limited you on what furniture or options you may have, a deck is completely wide open and can be designed about what you want to put there.

Are you going to have a regular table and chairs in a circular pattern? Perhaps you want to put a BBQ zone on one side so that side needs to be a bit longer. Since this is your deck, you can plan and layout things exactly as you want them.

Does it Interrupt Your House’s Flow?

When thinking about the deck and design, you want it to be a natural part of your house and not something that sticks out like a sore thumb. Should you design your deck to fit with your house’s natural outdoor look or design it as an extension to the connecting room inside?

When building in the backyard, is it going to interfere with a play area, garden, or something else? Think about how this deck will be a part of your house and how it shouldn’t interfere with anything that’s already there.

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