Choosing Between Patio or Deck: Which Is the Perfect Fit?
Pandemic or not, homeowners love to have a beautiful outdoor space added to their homes. Two of the best choices for outdoor living are, in fact, decks and patios. These open-air additions offer a beautiful atmosphere for entertaining and relaxing with loved ones while enjoying the outdoors.
If you plan to install either of these two wonderful outdoor living areas, you might wonder how they differ. Find out about them below.
Difference Between Decks and Patios
These are the main differences between a deck and a patio. A deck is essentially an open outdoor porch or platform that extends from the house. It has no roof covering and is typically made of wood. To prolong the life of the wood and protect it from natural elements, materials used for decks are sealed or pressure-treated.
Most often, decks are attached to the house. In some instances, they might need guardrails if built above the ground. Decks are good options when the landscape surrounding your house is uneven or sloped. Decks are ideal as well if you plan on installing an outdoor hot tub since wood dries easily.
On the other hand, patios are outdoor areas built on the ground level. Unlike decks, patios are more flexible when it comes to design and materials. They can either be attached or detached from the house.
The materials you can use for building a patio can be anything, including concrete walls, steel parts, or gavel. Adding some landscaping also works well for patios. Among the two also, patios are less expensive to build, and materials can last much longer.
Advantages and Disadvantages of a Deck
In terms of advantages, building a deck offers a higher resale value of your property. It is said that, on average, there is a 76 percent return on investment for a wooden deck. Such an estimate is higher compared to all indoor home renovations. Decks work well on even terrain, and since they can be built off the ground, they can provide a better view of your home.
Nonetheless, deck maintenance can be expensive, considering you need to have it power washed, sealed, and stained regularly. Also, since decks are typically made of wood, they have a shorter lifespan, especially when not given proper treatment.
Advantages and Disadvantages of a Patio
If you opt to have a patio built instead, it has its share of advantages and disadvantages. On the plus side, building a patio is less expensive. A patio flush on the ground costs way less than a deck. Unlike decks, you can build off a patio using concrete as a material. Patios are also easier to maintain since pavers and stone patios could stand the test of time.
Furthermore, patios offer more privacy. Since it is lower to the ground, you are ensured you are safe from the prying eyes of neighbors and passersby. It also has more versatility when it comes to design.
However, if you live on a ground with uneven terrain, a patio is not a good option. If you push for it, you have to spend a lot of money building a solid foundation to start. Since you use more durable materials to create a patio, construction might take longer compared to when installing a deck. This is especially true in areas when ground movement always happens.
Considerations on Choosing One
Regardless of what outdoor addition you plan on building, both share common considerations such as maintenance and permits and licenses. Learn more about each one to make a well-informed decision.
If you plan on building a deck, keep in mind to have it thoroughly cleaned twice a year. Experts suggest late fall and late spring be the ideal time to do this. Every year you also need to do a thorough inspection for any damages such as rotting, loose nails, and chipped or cracked paint.
In contrast, patios require less maintenance since the materials used are more sturdy. If you have bricks or stone patios, you only need to have them replaced when cracks or chips appear or when you need to touch up some mortar.
Nonetheless, if you have a concrete patio, you need to have it cleaned regularly to avoid mildew formation.
Permits and Licenses
Regardless if you are building a patio or a deck, you sometimes need a permit from your city or town. Otherwise, you might be fined or, worse, have your newly built structure torn down. Imagine the wasted money and effort.
Getting a license and permit can be a hassle, but you could do that on your own. It does not preclude you from hiring a professional instead of handling all the building and planning so that you can speed up the process.
Your home is an investment. Make smart choices on what exterior addition best suits your home.