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Benefits and Challenges of Building a Raised Deck

Benefits and Challenges of Building a Raised Deck

A deck is an excellent addition to any exterior space, and there is no better way to elevate (pardon the pun) your property than building a raised deck. Whether your home is on a hill or you want to create a second-story walkout, a deck will expand your home's living space and versatility. There are many good reasons for building a raised deck, from moisture prevention to increasing the usable space on your property. However, a raised deck doesn’t come without challenges. You can, however, successfully tackle the project with the correct information and guidance. In this article, we will explore the pros and cons of building a raised deck so you can have the know-how to complete the project successfully. Visit us at Knowles Building Centre for more information and assistance with your project.

Benefits of a Raised Deck

Increased Outdoor Living Space

The most obvious benefit of a raised deck is the increased usable space. No matter what type of deck you build, it will take up a defined amount of square footage. Compared to a low deck, however, a raised deck allows for access beneath the deck, effectively doubling the usable area. An additional deck or patio can be created beneath, increasing the functionality of the outdoor space.

Cool Views

Another great reason for building an elevated deck is to take advantage of a potential view or to catch the breeze. Depending on where and how your property is situated, a raised deck could allow you to capture a refreshing breeze or see a beautiful sunset view that a low deck cannot.

Better Drainage and Ventilation

A raised deck provides the benefit of increased drainage and ventilation. With an elevated structure, air moves freely below the deck, reducing ground-level moisture build-up and penetration potential. This, in turn, increases the structure's longevity as it remains dry and free from excessive moisture buildup.

Keeping Critters at Bay

Anyone who has ever built or owned a low deck knows they inevitably attract animals if proper measures are not taken. A raised deck eliminates this possibility because the elevated structure does not provide a place for animals to nest and hide.

Architectural Interest

A raised deck can increase your property's visual appeal and interest. Raised decks allow for greater layout possibilities than low-constructed decks. They can incorporate different levels into the structure, increasing its aesthetic appeal. You can also include more creative design elements for dividing different sections or levels with planter boxes, privacy screens, and trellises. A raised deck will often include other architectural elements like stairs, which can increase functionality and visual interest.

Challenges of Building a Raised Deck

Higher Cost of Construction

The most obvious challenge of building a raised deck is the cost. An increased height directly correlates to an increased cost when considering materials and labour. If you build the deck yourself, the time it takes to complete the project will grow and will most likely require additional help. Compared to a low-level deck, a raised deck needs a substantial foundation to build from. They will also require railings and stairs, which add to the project scope and budget. As mentioned above, a raised deck creates livable space under the deck, but that space will also need to be developed to use it effectively. This will add some cost to the budget.

Construction Challenges

A raised deck requires a higher degree of construction skill and knowledge. The structure needed for a raised deck is substantial compared to a ground-level deck. The requirements for your physical skill and ability will also increase, as the building process will insist that you work overhead and handle heavy framing materials. As previously mentioned, you may need to employ others or leverage your creativity to compensate for a lack of additional help.

Permitting Complexities

In contrast to a low-built deck, a raised deck will most certainly need permit approval. The increased height poses building and safety concerns that must be addressed through a design and approval process. This means drafting and submitting construction documents for approval through your local or regional construction governing agency. This process will require additional time and money to realize project completion.

Increased Maintenance Requirements

The higher the deck, the higher the cost of maintaining it. Unlike a ground-level deck, seasonal maintenance costs will increase as a raised deck requires ladders or other specialized equipment. An elevated deck will undoubtedly increase the time needed to complete maintenance tasks, adding to the overall cost. The underside of the deck will also require regular maintenance to ensure it is clean and safe to enjoy. If you need to replace or fix a part of an elevated deck, the cost will be higher than it would be for a lower deck.

To Raise or Not To Raise

Building a raised deck comes with enticing rewards and notable challenges. On the one hand, the expanded outdoor living space, enhanced views, improved drainage, and architectural interest add significant value to your property. On the other hand, the higher construction costs, increased complexity of construction, permitting requirements, and elevated maintenance needs demand careful consideration and planning. Yet, with the correct information and guidance, you can navigate these challenges and reap the benefits of a raised deck.

Remember, with the right resources and expertise, the sky's the limit for transforming your outdoor living space. If you need further advice, our team at Knowles Building Centre will gladly help elevate your knowledge.

Disclaimer: The information and resources in these articles and on this website are available for informational and educational purposes only. The articles provided on this website are created with every reasonable effort to ensure completeness and accuracy. In doing so, the article writers, publishers, and the business that this website represents assume no responsibility for errors, omissions, or opposed interpretation of the articles and under no circumstance will these parties be held liable for any direct, indirect and/or consequential damages of any kind incurred from undertaking tasks outlined in the articles or on this website. In addition, it is suggested that readers check by-laws, zoning laws and building codes of your local area and country.