There may have been a time when a deck was a deck, but things have changed. These days, there are a number of features that homeowners can add to their outdoor decks, both to enhance appearance and improve utility. Adding multiple levels, incorporating various types of railings, custom trim, installing a water feature—there is a deck feature to satisfy virtually every taste and budget.
If you’re considering building a new deck, or improving your existing deck, here are a few of the most exciting features you should consider.
1. Multi-tiered deck
Adding tiers is a fantastic way to increase the beauty and functionality of your deck. You don’t need to make a dramatic change here; even a height difference of one or two feet can achieve a tangible effect. Tiers are especially good if you’re building (or have built) your deck on a steep slope. Owners of multi-tiered decks tend to use different tiers for different functions. For example, one tier can be used for relaxing and one for entertaining. Alternatively, one tier can be used for cooking and another for dining. The steps connecting the tiers can also be made into built-in seating.
2. Fire pit
A quality fire pit can turn your average deck into a regal, outdoor living area. It creates a focal point on your deck (a place around which to center the seating area), and gives you a cozy place to enjoy evenings and colder weather. Outdoor fireplace designs range from a simple, modern cement block or “bowl” design to a custom brick fireplace with custom accents. Built-in fire pits have gained popularity in recent years as homeowners seek to get more out of their outdoor living areas.
Railings around your deck are an important safety feature and a way to visually enclose the space; however, they don’t have to be boring. Choose from wood, composite, metal, or a combination of these. Glass and cable railings help preserve your view. Aluminum balusters are affordable and add visual depth, while baroque-style balusters create a classic, European-style look. Stainless steel cables can add a sleek, modern appearance. Add utility and visual appeal to railings by attaching planter boxes or a ledge on top to set drinks. When it comes to railings, there are many options to discuss with your deck building specialist.
4. Water features
A water feature such as a fountain or koi pond can bring energy and beauty your deck and, like a fire pit, can serve as a great focal point. They’re also a great way to conceal unwanted sounds, such as street noise. There are many ways to add the element of water, from a simple copper basin with a drip fountain to a built-in waterfall.
Taking your deck to the next level
Whether you’re starting fresh or looking for ways to upgrade your deck, these are some of the features to consider. When your deck is carefully planned and expertly built by a qualified contractor, you can rest assured that your investment will pay off in terms of enjoying the present and increasing market value in the future.
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