Thinking Outside the Square: Design Your Deck for Your Personal Style
The ideal vision of a sunny day in the backyard usually includes relaxing on the deck. So it's not surprising that a deck addition is a highly popular choice in home renovation. You obviously want to get the most enjoyment from your new play area, so before you contact a builder and tell him, "Build me a deck!", you might want to work up a little fantasy of how your deck reflects your style and enhances your outdoor experience. So – what does your fantasy deck look like?
Your first image might just be the standard square deck. This popular deck is the default model and will certainly give you the enjoyment of fresh air dining and lounging. There's a reason that a square is the default deck shape. A square deck is easy to build, so it usually goes up fast. It looks fine, it does the job, and is the deck some builders will automatically give you if you don't share your thoughts on where you'd like your deck design to go.
So if you find yourself imagining more luxury, comfort or fashionable entertaining than a serviceable square will provide, it's important to go with a builder who also has design expertise. If you have the concept but not the details in mind, it will be well worth your time to seek out a builder/designer who also has the people skills to truly listen to your ideas and guide you toward realizing your vision.
If you do a little research before your project begins – or better yet, contract with a "design partner" builder who will have lots of ideas to present and discuss --you'll be thrilled at all the options available in today's deck designs.
Here are some of the deck trends that are transforming plain decks into charming and versatile outdoor living spaces:
- Two-story decks
- Multiple levels
- Curved elements
- Outdoor kitchens
- Fire features
- Low-voltage lighting
- Water features
- Built-in sound systems
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Chuckle of the Week
A Contractor and a Lawyer in Heaven
A contractor and a lawyer are in car accident and show up at the Pearly Gates together.
St. Peter greets them. "Come with me, my sons," he says. "I will take you to the homes where you will spend all of eternity."
The contractor and the lawyer get into St. Peter's holy convertible, and they all head on down a beautiful golden road, which turns into a platinum road, which turns onto an even grander road paved with sparkling diamonds.
They pull up in front of a huge luxury mansion, where St. Peter turns to the lawyer and says, "Here is your home for the rest of eternity, my son, enjoy! And if there is anything you need, just let me know."
The contractor is pretty excited as St. Peter goes back down the diamond studded boulevard, down the platinum highway, and onto the street of gold. Then they turn down an avenue of silver, drive along a stone alley and over an unpaved footpath to pull up in front of a rickety aluminum-siding cabin with a little picket fence.
St Peter says, "Here you go!" and starts to leave.
"Hey now, wait just a minute here!" says the shocked contractor. "I've been a good man all my life! I always did my business honestly, treated others fairly, cherished my family, and was a good steward of the Earth! How come the lawyer gets the big mansion and I get this shack?"
St. Peter says: "Well, contractors are a dime a dozen here, but we've never had a lawyer before."