Install the right deck for your home

Adding a deck to your home can not only add an extra entertaining area, play space and extend your living room, it can also add value and increase the saleability of your house. Deciding what style of deck you want, how big it’s to be and which decking materials to use depend on a range of factors including your lifestyle, house design, budget and yard size.

The perfect deck to suit your lifestyle

If you have a big, active family, a large deck with plenty of room to move around is going to get maximum use. Alternatively, if you are a smaller household, such as a couple who loves entertaining, your perfect deck could include space for an outdoor kitchen and dining area. A pool deck is ideal for a home full of people who love to swim and relax around the pool on warm summer days.

Where to position your deck?

The design of your house, its position on the block, aspect and the size of the land are all determining factors in deciding where to build your deck. If your home is lucky enough to have a great view, building your deck to provide extra places to appreciate the vista makes perfect sense.

The beauty of deck design is that it can be practically any shape to fit in with the space available. You can build around trees, along the side of the building, design a multi-level deck to step down to the pool or garden or angle out to make the most of a sea view, the options are endless.

Positioning the deck for easy access from inside your home ensures it will get the most use. Also, take into account the aspect of the deck location so you get shade from the summer sun when you need it most and warmth for winter days.

Build within your budget

Make certain you have incorporated all aspects of the deck installation when budgeting for your build. Some points to consider when planning your deck:

  • any site works needed before the building can begin
  • footings
  • deck posts
  • bearers
  • joists
  • decking – the type of decking material
  • finishing – deck painting, staining, varnishing or oiling
  • deck railing, stairs, balustrades
  • timber privacy screening – if needed

Ensure you and your carpenter have addressed all of these points.

The type of decking timber or material you use will affect the end cost of the deck installation as well as the ongoing maintenance costs. The range of decking products, price variation and choice is extensive.

  • treated pine decking – affordable, must be treated to avoid termites and harsh weathering
  • spotted gum – tough, resistant to fade, easy to work with
  • red gum – attractive grain and colour, not ideal for humid conditions, hardwood
  • bamboo – environmentally friendly, and tough, although can’t be refinished or sanded
  • Merbau – resistant to weathering and termites, not a sustainable wood
  • Jarrah – hardwood resistant to termites and decay, beautiful colouring
  • cypress – resists warping and splintering, stains and paints well
  • Silvertop ash – sustainably grown timber, durable hardwood, not termite resistant
  • WPC – wood and plastic composite, also known as eco-wood or plastic wood, minimal maintenance, can be porous
  • uPVC decking – unplasticised PVC, retains its colour, very little upkeep, strong, durable

The versatile deck

Deck’s are not just for entertaining. Don’t limit your deck design to an extension of the living area of your home, there are so many other great deck ideas.

  • outdoor shower – perfect for sandy kids, muddy feet or work-worn husbands
  • spa deck – the ultimate in indulgence
  • small deck off the master bedroom – the perfect spot for a quiet retreat in the hammock or sun lounge with a good book
  • entrance deck – create a one of a kind entranceway to your home
  • moveable garden – bring the garden to your back door with a potted plant display or easily accessible fresh herbs.

There are many things to consider when planning a deck but don’t lose sight of the most important thing, we live in an amazing climate, get outside every chance you can and enjoy it.

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