Are you interested in building a deck somewhere on your property? Before you get into the logistics of size and space, you should first decide why exactly you want a deck. What do you hope to get out of it?
- Do you want to entertain guests outside during the warmer spring and summer months?
- Do you want to beautify your lawn and add curb appeal with some sort of focal point for passers by and potential buyers?
- Do you want to add an extra living space?
Whatever the reason, once you decide what the overall purpose of your deck is, you can then get into the facets of planning it.
Placement & Privacy
If you’re building a deck in the backyard, it might be because you want to entertain outdoors or perhaps you’d like to lay out by a swimming pool. Before you begin building, head outside early in the morning and notice where the sun hits your property; check again later in the afternoon, as well. This may be a deciding factor as to whether or not you would like to enclose your deck and make it a lanai/porch. And if you want some privacy, you’ll need to add screens, blinds and a door.
Size & Space
An empty deck looks big… until you fill it with furniture. If you have already purchased the furnishings, you must measure the space accurately to ensure that all of your pieces will fit atop the deck. The size of your yard will also play a role in this decision, so try not to furnish your deck until after you’ve built it. Just keep in mind that you may want a table, a few chairs and perhaps a grill station if you choose to build an open deck. Don’t go overboard.
Levels & Railings
If your home rises up well above your lawn, try to avoid building your deck lower than the house. You might remember that little step, but chances are that your guests might not notice it and take a little tumble as they step outside onto the deck. Also, you may want to consider installing railings. It’s a huge liability for you if someone were to fall off of your deck and break a bone.
Stairs & Skirting
Again, if you are building a raised deck, you may want to build stairs that lead down to the yard. Consider the landscaping, though, and place the steps to the side of the deck where people will have the most room to walk and access the rest of the yard. In order to keep fuzzy friends from breeding under the deck, you may want to build lattice skirting around the bottom. It’s a nice decorative addition, as well.