Adding a deck to your home can increase its value as well as its curb appeal. It can also add to your outdoor living space. However, a poorly designed deck can reduce the value, aesthetic footprint, and potentially be unusable. Here are four design factors to consider in the planning stage.
Consider Your Lifestyle
When you think about having a deck, what do you envision doing on it? Are you picturing yourself relaxing at the end of the day and watching the sun fade from the horizon? Do you want to watch the sunset while sitting in a hot tub? Perhaps your ideal deck is an extension of your kitchen, with plenty of room for grilling, making cocktails, and entertaining. Maybe you want to gather around a gas-fueled fire pit in the evening or just want a small deck and with a simple table and chair to enjoy a morning cup of coffee while reading the newspaper. Determining why you want a deck and how you will use it will avoid disappointment.
Think About Your View
Most people place their deck in the backyard as they don't want to look out onto the street or be on display as traffic goes by. If you want a deck to enjoy sunsets, however, and the view from your back yard doesn't ever see the setting sun, you may need to re-think your deck placement and what you want to gain from additional outdoor space. If watching the sun set is important to you, you may have to choose a different location.
Look At Your Floor Plan
If you want an outdoor kitchen on your deck, it makes the most sense to place your deck directly off your kitchen or dining room. If you don't already have an existing deck, you may not have access to the outdoors from either of these room. This means you would need to install French doors or patio doors. This will add to the cost of your deck and may even require remodeling the interior space to accommodate a new opening.
Analyze Your Future Needs
While a multi-level deck may look appealing, repeatedly walking up and down stairs to reach the different levels may not be so appealing in the future. Retirees often sell their two-story family home and opt for a home on one level instead as this is easier to maneuver. Conversely, families may not want to deal with the constant supervision a lot of steps require when they have young children.
Understanding your motivation for a deck and what you hope to gain from the space will go a long way in your end satisfaction. A custom deck contractor can be very helpful in helping you choose a design that's right for you.