Inspiring Deck Ideas

Do you dream of a perfect deck? Builders include a deck on new homes to give you a starting point. From here you can add your most inspiring deck ideas, from built-in seating to planters and more, as people are spending more time outdoors.

Even if your first deck is an 8 by 10 treated deck off the family room, you will begin to dream about crazy deck setups. The question is rarely if you’ll have a deck but more about the size of the deck, the deck design and how it complements your home as well as the materials used for the deck and railings. With a builder deck, it’s common to extend the deck on the same level or sometimes the second deck at a different level which adds interest. Regardless of the deck, you start with, the deck design is your first priority, followed by picking materials.

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Ideas on How You Will Use Your Deck

When you start planning your deck, it’s common to get confused between what looks good and the activities or functional requirements you have, so your family will use the deck more in their day-to-day lives. A good way to make sure you don’t overlook things is to create a list of the activities you’ll use your deck for. One of the most important things, when you are thinking about inspiring deck ideas, is to identify how much space you need, and other features like a grill for meal preparation.

This exercise will help you visualize how your family will use the deck. You’ll begin to see that you need more room to use the grill and set the dinner table at the same time, or you’ll consider how many neighbors will gather at your home.

Deck Designs That Support Your Family Activities

Most homeowners will start with a cooking corner and a comfortable area for family dining, which might be placed around the corner of the house to take advantage of a great view. The fun begins as you consider how many different activity spaces you want your deck to provide. There are thousands of deck plans to peruse to give you ideas for arranging your deck.

Older children prefer their own space so a multi-tier deck can provide needed separation while keeping youngsters within shouting distance. Play space for small children needs to be close to the door, as parents must keep an eye on elementary school children who can play independently.

Decks will also need to accommodate other backyard features like a spa or pool. As these activities won’t occur as frequently as cooking and eating outdoors, the decks surrounding these features can be further from your access door(s).

Deck Materials to Match Your Home and Budget

It’s time to pick materials once you’ve decided on the design for your deck. Traditionally decks have been built of wood which offers lots of flexibility in adding built-in features like seating, storage, and flower boxes. As wood requires ongoing maintenance (cleaning, staining, and sealing), new composite and vinyl components have become more popular.

When picking your deck materials, factor in the initial material and installation costs plus ongoing maintenance. You’ll quickly see that after several years, a composite deck might actually cost less. You can also use different materials for the deck flooring and railings, so one way to balance the budget is to use wood flooring which is easier to stain and a composite or vinyl for the railings.

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