While setting up a deck in your yard might seem simple, it’s important to do it right so that you’ll be able to get the most use out of your deck for a long time to come. Before you can even start building (or having someone else build), it’s important to have a good design ready. Here are some ideas to help you create an outdoor living space you and your guests will love:
1. Bigger is better: Take advantage of as much yard space as you can, especially if you have plenty available. You won’t want to be crowded, so give yourself room to spread out, especially if you’re planning on having larger parties.
2. Include lighting and shade: You may want to plan for some kind of cover for at least part of the deck, to keep it useable even on hot summer days. Keep in mind the time you’ll most likely want to use it—for example, at dinner—and check the conditions. You can also add some lights so you can use the deck at night.
3. Plan for use and space: The shape and size will largely be determined by how much room you have to build, but you’ll also want to think about what sort of gatherings you might have. How many people are you typically going to invite, and what are you going to want to do? For bigger parties that might break up into smaller activities, you might want separate tiers or other distinct areas, including one for outdoor cooking and one for eating. Smaller groups might want a single area, and may be more likely to want built-in benches.
4. Think of it as a room: Especially if you’re having trouble deciding how you might best use a deck, think of it the same way you would any other part of your house. It needs to be comfortable and easy to hang out on. If you don’t have a lot of space, think about how to work in the furniture you need, like seating and tables, without too much crowding.
5. Plan for maintenance: You’ll have to take care of a deck the same way you do the rest of your home exterior and garden. While some woods can be left untreated, most will hold up better long-term with a stain, which can also be a more attractive option. Stain is generally a better idea than paint, and can still give you a good, solid colour. More expensive woods can be easier to take care of and last longer, if you can afford it and are interested in making the investment.
There are plenty of good ways to set up a deck, and planning carefully can help you come up with something that works well for you. Be sure to keep in touch with our latest blogs through twitter and tweet us your ideas for us to read.