Deck Tours: 4 Distinctive Designs
Get ideas for extending your living space into the yard by touring these delightful decks. Designs include a wraparound deck, a better builder's deck, a small-space sanctuary, and a rooftop retreat.
Everything In This Slideshow
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This raised ranch lacked curb appeal. The solution: A budget-friendly exterior boost that consisted of wrapping the back deck around the house to the front. Now, two decks and a pergola that frames the front entry add depth and character to the once-boxy exterior without fundamentally changing it.
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Several colors of wood stains make the columns, pergola roof, and deck railings stand out against the siding. Copper finials add a decorative flourish to the front deck railing.
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A deck and pergola stretch across the back of the house, where planters and flower-filled hanging baskets bring the garden closer.
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Glass doors allow access from the home's interior to the decks on all sides of the house, providing multiple opportunities for outdoor living and breathtaking views from inside the house.
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Better Builder's Deck
Here, a basic builder's deck with few details is transformed into a stunning and inviting outdoor living space with just a few affordable upgrades.
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The original wood balusters were replaced with curvaceous aluminum balusters that add character and create an airy feel.
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The stairs were extended across the entire length of the deck to provide additional outdoor seating. This also helps to open up the space visually and create a better transition to the yard.
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The traditional wood decking was replaced with low-maintenance composite planks. Now the flooring never needs staining, and the gray planks complement the home's existing siding.
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Attractive, low-voltage light fixtures are inconspicuous during the day, but at night they provide a soft, indirect glow that makes the deck functional.
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A contrasting pergola adds more architectural interest to the back of the house and provides partial shade for diners underneath.
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This deck's thoughtful design offers plenty of outdoor living space without taking up too much of a small backyard. The deck is divided into areas for eating, conversing, and relaxing in the hot tub. Its curved design is an aesthetic step up from a boxy builder deck, and it effectively utilizes the limited space.
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Shade and Comfort
The built-in benches and custom spa surround were made of Western red cedar and topped with ipe, a tropical hardwood. A fujidana -- a Japanese-style structure -- made with all-heart California redwood and topped with bamboo stakes, provides shade over the entire deck.
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Two panels in the spa surround provide much appreciated storage. Another panel allows for easy maintenance of the tub.
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Outdoor Room with a View
Two benches and an end table make up a quaint sitting area with views of the valley below. The low-to-the-ground deck needs no railings, but the furniture is secured to the deck for safety.
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Deck in the City
This deck proves that you can still have a cozy, comfortable, and private outdoor living space in the city. The deck sits atop a New York City condo building and squeezes lots of living space into a small area. The rooftop retreat is divided into multiple outdoor rooms including an outdoor kitchen, separate dining area, and a secluded nook for lounging.
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A long, composite-top dining table provides plenty of seating for guests and family members, and it can withstand sunshine and rain. A pergola enhanced with quick-growing, low-maintenance vines provides shade for the dining area.
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A secluded nook with chaise longues and an umbrella-topped table creates the perfect spot to relax.
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The deck is covered with ipe-wood planks set in a checkerboard pattern for a modern look. The decking "floats" over the roof to comply with the roof warranty. Tall plants occupy planter boxes wrapped in crimped copper sheeting, dividing the box-shape space into the activity centers.
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An open-air outdoor kitchen with a built-in grill makes outdoor cooking and entertaining a breeze.