Planning tips for building a deck

Planning tips for building a deck

It's important to put some thought into the deck or patio installed. Before setting out on a big project, consider these questions and tips:

Set your expectations and budget. How do you plan to use your deck or patio? What amount are you willing to spend? What kind of landscaping will best complement your new deck or patio?

Understand the requirements. Check local zoning codes and if you belong to a neighborhood association, consult its regulations to make sure your dream deck won't have to be torn down once completed.

Choose the material. There are a variety of options. For example, poured concrete can be finished in a lot of different colors or stamped so it looks like stone, tile or brick. If you go with stone, it really adds a natural aesthetic to your yard. With concrete pavers, you get even more choice. They come in a number of different sizes, shapes and colors. You can use all the same size pavers, or mix sizes, to create a unique pattern. For a classy touch, consider unglazed tiles.

Hire a professional. Research the kind of residential contractor you will need to install the material you choose — do you need a builder, a deck and patio contractor or somone who specializes in laying tile? Check Angie's List for ratings and reviews and be sure to get at least three estimates. Depending on the project's size and scope, you also may want to consider the services of a landscape architect, who can make sure your vision becomes a structurally sound reality.

What categories to search on Angie's List

  • If you're leaning towards a concrete pool deck, check the List under Concrete Pouring & Repair.
  • For stone or concrete pavers, check Stone & Gravel or Landscaping.
  • To tile your deck, search Ceramic Tile or Marble & Granite.

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