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Deck vs. Patio — How to Decide Between the TwoJanuary 11th, 2022 by
Designers, home decorators, realtors, and builders have all increased their offerings due to the popularity of outdoor living space. Increasingly, home buyers are looking for houses that have an outdoor area for entertaining, spending family time, or enjoying outdoor meals. There are also more homeowners installing decks or patios to make their outdoor space more versatile.
In this article, we’ll discuss the differences between and deck and a patio so you can decide which option is best for you.
Deck vs. Patio: What’s the Difference?
Traditionally, a deck refers to a platform or floor on a ship. Today, it’s a common term used to describe an outdoor living space. A deck is a raised platform that connects to the house and doesn’t have a roof. Decks are usually made of pressure-treated lumber, but they can also be made with other materials, including PVC, composites, and more. You can stain the wood to match the rest of your house for a cohesive look.
A patio sits directly on the ground and may be attached to your house or not. It is often made from poured concrete or concrete pavers. Other materials include flagstone, clay brick, and recycled plastic. Patios offer a lot of flexibility in design. You can create a unique patio style using a combination of materials, colors, and patterns.
Wood Deck vs. Concrete Patio Cost and Maintenance
For many homeowners, the choice in which one to build comes down to deck vs. patio cost. There are exceptions, but a deck is usually more affordable than a patio, while a concrete patio is more durable and requires less maintenance. Wood decks need to be pressure washed annually. You also need to stain and seal the wood a minimum of every two years. By the time you factor in these costs, a deck can end up being close in cost to a patio.
Maintenance for a concrete patio is much simpler. You can easily clean it off with a hose and inspect for cracks from time to time. If significant cracks occur, you might have to replace a portion of the concrete. Otherwise, your patio should last for years.
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Other Considerations When Choosing Between a Deck vs. Patio
If you live in certain areas, you will have local building codes that will dictate whether you build a deck or patio. The terrain around your house will also be a factor. Patios aren’t recommended when the ground isn’t flat.
When the choice between a deck and patio is yours, you might have preferences based on privacy, building costs, the timeline, and how the deck or patio will be used. If you plan to live in your home for a long time, you want to choose an outdoor living space that suits your taste, your budget, and your lifestyle. If you plan to sell your house in the near future, you’re probably more interested in the potential ROI from installing a deck or patio. Your decision might be a way to attract more potential buyers.
If you want a fast solution to getting an outdoor space, a patio is much easier and faster to install than a deck. However, if you live in uneven terrain, it can take more time and money to prepare the ground before installation. In most cases, a deck costs more to install. However, it could still be your best option since it’s likely to increase your ROI when you sell the property.
Your lifestyle and how you will use the space will also determine the best choice. For example, if you plan to add a hot tub or kitchen, you need to consider how much weight a deck or patio will support.
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Raised Patio vs. Deck
Raised patios are a compromise between a traditional patio and a deck. They are elevated rather than being at ground level, and they have a wall made of retaining wall block around the entire structure. One advantage of a raised patio is that you can make it level with the dining room or kitchen door. It’s easier to carry food out when entertaining in your outdoor space.
Another advantage to a raised patio is that you can choose from a greater variety of materials. This gives you more options to make your raised patio more durable and aesthetically pleasing than with a wood deck.
The choice between deck vs. patio includes a wide range of custom designs and options. Understanding how you want to use your space and the costs and materials that go into each choice can help narrow down your options. Once you know what you want to accomplish with your new outdoor space, it’s all a matter of choosing the design that will fill your needs.
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