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4 Important Decisions To Make Before Installing A Deck On Your Property

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Adding a deck to your property can be a great way to increase your home's resale value and enjoy added outdoor living space. However, there are a lot of important decisions that come along with having a deck installed. Before you choose a contractor for the job, then, there are a few important decisions you'll want to make. From there, you can more easily find the right contractor to trust with the job.

Decking Material

Not all decking material is created equal. Typically, a wooden deck is the least expensive option and comes with the added benefit of being able to be stained, painted, and refinished as desired. However, wood is also prone to rot, mold, and mildew, which could mean increased maintenance costs over time. Another option to consider is that of composite decking, which is more expensive but never needs to be stained, painted, or otherwise refinished. It's also more durable because it's not prone to rotting or splintering.

Size and Layout

You'll also want to consider the general size and layout of your new deck, as most decking companies will charge by the square foot for materials and labor. In determining your ideal deck size, you'll need to consider what type of entertaining you plan on doing on your deck. How much seating will you need, and what other space will be required? For example, you may want to have space not only for a deck table and chairs, but a grill, hammock, and perhaps even a bar.

In terms of your layout, try to get a general idea of the shape and number of tiers you'd like your deck to have. 

Railing Type

Deck railings may be required, depending on the height of your deck from the ground below. There are many options to consider here, ranging from simple wooden railings to aluminum or steel railings. The key advantage of a steel or aluminum deck railing is that you'll never have to worry about staining or painting them. However, these also tend to cost more to install than a simple wooden railing, so it depends on your budget.


There are all kinds of fun features and add-ons to consider with your deck design. For instance, some homeowners opt to have bench seating built into the deck itself. You may also want to see about having integrated lighting built into your deck for added ambiance. The possibilities here are really endless.