One of the most common additions you can make as a homeowner is to add a beautiful outdoor deck to your home. By incorporating a deck, you are increasing your living space and providing a valuable space to gather with friends and family or to host parties and gatherings, all while enjoying the great outdoors. There are many benefits to adding a deck to your home, which will make it a meaningful investment.
If you are thinking about resale value, building a deck can increase your homeís value. It will also increase your yardís usability. Whether you have a small or sloped yard or rough terrain, a deck will improve your yard by making it a more functional, usable space.
There are many options and flexibility for the kind, type and design of a deck that you want. A deck will make your home more eye pleasing and increase your homeís overall quality and the design can look natural and appealing to match the design of your home.
Unlike in the past, now there are many options in decking materials to choose from and it is important to understand each one. Making the right decision is essential in ensuring the durability of your deck as well as your enjoyment and use of it. Wood decks include Pressure-Treated Wood, Cedar and Tropical Hardwoods, while Synthetic decking includes Composite and Cellular PVC. Each type has its own pros and cons and they need to all be considered carefully.
Wood decking materials such as Pressure-Treated can be less costly when it comes to materials and are more commonly available, therefore replacing boards does not become an issue. Wood is one of the strongest and easiest to work with for building decks. Although a wood deck may cost less upfront, it is important to consider the cost and time it will take after the building is complete to maintain it in order to enjoy the deck for years to come. Wood decks require periodically cleaning and sealing. They are also prone to splinters, cupping, shrinking, swelling and degrading over time.
Pressure-Treated Wood: Pressure-treated wood is wood that been pre-treated for increased resistance to moisture and the elements. The most common pressure-treated woods used for decks are spruce, pine, and southern yellow pine. Pressure-treated wood is an affordable option, although you need to keep in mind that you will still need to treat your decking with a stain or water repellent after installation, and then once every year after. Another thing to keep in mind is the toxicity of the chemicals used in its treatment if you have children or pets.
Cedar: Cedar an appealing natural light wood option. This kind of wood option is two times more expensive than pressure-treated wood and also requires yearly staining if you donít want it to turn grey.
Tropical Hardwoods: The most aesthetically appealing and the most expensive option of decking are the ipe and tigerwood tropical hardwoods. They are very hard, dense, heavy and durable materials. It is also recommended that these woods be stained every year and also require a protective stain preservative to be applied three months after building the deck to seal the natural oils that seep out of the wood. Tropical hardwoods are also naturally resistant to rot and insects.
Synthetic decking is almost maintenance free. Composite or PVC decking does not require sealing or staining, and it will not splinter, although some composite decking can retain heat.
Composite: Composite decking is comprised of wood and resin. The wood gives it a similar look to natural wood and adds structural support and the resin adds durability and weather-resistance. Composite decking is available in the color and grain of almost any natural wood.
Cellular PVC: Cellular PVC made completely from plastic. It is considered to be the best economical option of the synthetic materials, but is also the most expensive. It is also low-maintenance and has a long life expectancy with some manufacturers providing a lifetime warranty.
Design elements to think about are:
Deck and rail material, Deck and step lighting, Decking pattern, Trim details, Overhead structures (Pergola, trellis), Single level or multilevel, Angles or shapes, and Under deck storage space.