Deck Design and You
Aside from the added space, decks can significantly add to the value of your home, often returning an average of 87% on the original investment. In combination with the value of decks, there are more than 40 million decks in the U.S. alone that were built more than 20 years ago and are still standing. A long lifespan plus the increase in the value of your home makes a porch or deck a great investment for all homeowners.
- Natural Woodland: For homeowners with a large amount of land behind their home for backyard recreation, a deck that allows a complete view of the landscape is quite popular. Being able to sit on a rocking chair surrounded by a view of trees and the sky is worth every penny. Using natural wood and avoiding painting the floor and beams of the deck makes the overall look very natural and suits the scenery perfectly.
- Outdoor Dining: If your family enjoys outdoor activities during warm seasons, a deck that allows for outdoor dining will perfectly complement your home. Keeping in mind the use of the porch during construction, you can have outlets and shelves installed to accommodate preparing and cooking meals.
- Living Room Deck: By adding an extension to roofs, contractors can protect wooden decks from the elements while allowing space to place furniture to create an area for family time. Hanging mirrors along the exterior wall of your home and laying down an area rug will give it a homey feel. Outdoor decks and patios create a diverse space for relaxation.
- Greek Revival: Many decks are now calling upon the architecture style of the Ancient Greeks for inspiration. Replacing wooden panels with tall columns brings an elegance and grace to decks of all sizes.
With such an increase in home property value, adding decks to homes is becoming increasingly popular among homeowners. If you're thinking about adding to your home, keep these design tips in mind!
Deck railings provide the finishing touch for your new deck. Safety, of course, is the practical consideration behind the installation of deck railings; however, when planning your deck and selecting a deck rail, consider the style and materials used in your home. The deck itself can be either wood or composite, depending on your preferences, but the rail should harmonize with your home's overall character. Choosing wisely from among the various deck railing styles is critical to the project from a design perspective.
Sources of deck or porch rail ideas include other homes in your neighborhood, especially if one of your neighbors has done something exceptionally creative. Home and garden magazines, as well as Pinterest, can be rich sources of inspiration. Home shows are a terrific way to see the materials. Last, but not least, contact us for help in finding the perfect solution for your home.
Pressure treated wood rails and balusters remain the traditional and practical choice for homeowners who choose to invest in a wood deck. Depending on local building codes, decorative railing panels such as a sunburst or Chippendale panel can be inserted for interest and character. Planters, benches and arbors can be incorporated to create outdoor rooms as well as provide security. Like your wood deck, wood deck rails will need to be periodically cleaned and maintained to preserve the wood’s natural beauty.
Iron balusters are an alternative whose aesthetic appeal cannot be denied when combined with wood rails. Local building codes will determine how close the balusters need to be in order to prevent a safety hazard for small children and pets.
Composite and Vinyl
Composite and vinyl deck railings are virtually maintenance-free and are a must when choosing a composite or vinyl deck. They don’t split, rot or splinter. They never need to be painted, and they retain their beauty season after season. Combine with a pergola or arbor to create the ultimate space for outdoor dining.
When you consider the infinite number of possibilities of materials and how they might be configured, it becomes obvious that there is no reason you can't create the deck railing of your dreams. With a little research and planning, you can combine new materials with old, and high style with fun. Contact us to discover the perfect deck railing for you.
Winter Deck Maintenance
If the summer has taken a toll on your wood deck – or if you’ve just invested in a new one – now is the time to clean, restore and protect the wood from possible moisture damage during the winter months ahead. Here are some tips for "winterizing" your deck:
- Clean the deck thoroughly to remove dirt, fungus and gray surface wood with a formulated deck cleaner. Weathered gray wood, rust spots and stains from mildew, moss, algae and tannin bleed can ruin the look of your deck. Even newly built decks can require cleaning to remove invisible surface barriers that prevent the adhesion of stains and sealers.
- Strip any deteriorating or unwanted stain or finish.
- Seal your deck with a water repellent finish before the beginning of winter. Water repellents stop rain, sleet, snow and ice from penetrating the wood surface, which can cause warping and cracking.
"Winterizing" your deck will protect it from the elements, and also protects your overall investment.