On The Up And Up: The Advantages Of Decks Over Patios

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If you've been redoing your yard and are now looking at what sort of paved living area to put outside, a patio created from nice pavers or clean concrete might be your first choice. But don't overlook decks, which have some distinct advantages over patios installed directly on the ground. Here's a look at why a raised deck might be a better choice for you.     

Floor Differences

A raised deck can be constructed to fit the height of the floor of the house. In other words, if you have a split-level home, and the door to the back is on a level that is several inches or feet higher than other parts of the house, you can build the deck right outside the door. You don't have to pave the patio and then add steps, which could be difficult for people to use, if they have leg or foot problems.

Uneven Terrain

This is the big advantage -- if your yard is rocky or uneven, you don't have to fill in valleys or remove hills. As long as the contractor building the deck can sink posts into the ground deep enough to satisfy local building regulations, you can have a deck. With a patio, you have to remove rocks, add soil, and ensure the area is properly graded before you do anything related to pouring concrete or setting down pavers.

High Water

Patios flood. Even properly graded patios can see water creeping up on and past the edges in heavy rain when the yard is saturated. Plus, if the ground under the patio gets saturated, the pavers could shift, or the concrete could crack. A deck is above all that--though you should keep in mind that if the rain has been constant, you might want to get the stability of the deck double-checked after the rains end. If the posts are very deep, there shouldn't be a problem, but it's always good to play it safe. 

If you'd like to know more about how a deck could be of benefit to you, talk to builders in your city (such as those from Rossmonster Designs) as well as the planning department. See what preparation has to be done in your yard and how long the permit process would take, compared to preparations and permits for a patio. Then, work with the builder to design a deck that allows you to enjoy your backyard to the fullest extent.

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