Ways of Expanding an Existing Deck of the House

Composite decking materials
Composite decking materials | Source: ATC Contractors


A deck, particularly a house deck is an extended outdoor living space of the house. It is a place to appreciate and enjoy the lovely outdoors while still relishing the comfort and the ease of being only a couple of steps away from the luxuries of your home. It is a few of the extremely popular places for entertaining guests. A deck is not only giving guests the preference of settling inside or appreciating the world outside, but it also increases the living space of the house.

How to start?

So, you are considering extending the deck of your house?

As a start, you must check on your area’s building codes and permit needs. In this way, you will know beforehand the restrictions and constraints it may cause. Some local building codes in your area or your very own homeowner’s association may restrict the extent or place of your plan of extending your deck. Do this early in the process. You will also have to contact the utility companies serving you and request them to send somebody out to your residence to mark every underground utility line.

Then, when planning a deck layout, initially use masonry string connected to wood stakes or batter boards. This method is used to keep the deck level and square. This is also used to initially visualize the planned deck placement. Moreover, be concerned about space issues. For example, put up your preferred deck furniture inside the masonry string area. Also, it is important how much sunlight or coverings your deck expansion will get, so do not forget about sunlight exposure. Albeit you intend to hire a person or contractor to put in place the deck expansion for you, it is great to work out all these steps, nonetheless. In this way, you will know and understand what to expect. Also, you can be as accurate as possible when negotiating and explaining what you want.

Putting up preferred deck furniture
Putting up preferred deck furniture

Before starting the construction of your deck, it is important to check first that the original deck is still structurally good. If the deck is connected to the house, meaning not freestanding, make sure that the ledger board is well secured to the side of the house. A ledger board is what fastens the deck frame to the house. Also, look for any defects in the posts beneath that support the deck for any proof of having thawed and heaved. But, if you are only adding a level to the deck, and even if you are not going to use the existing foundation to support your new expansion, it is an opportunity for you to update the old deck, if necessary.

Space Limitations Problems

Getting exasperated with the limitation of your plan deck expansion can be even more distressing. Much more if you discover how expensive it would be to tear down and rebuild. A house that has a small, cramped deck, will not help much with entertaining, of course. However, there is still a few good news. Look, if the original deck is still in decent shape and structurally sound, you could consider simply extending the existing deck. But make no haste here! Mistakes do happen. For this is not a job for the average do-it-yourself project. It takes a lot of advanced skills and some experience. Your best approach is to seriously consider hiring a contractor to do the work for you.

In your available space, you have quite a few options. Depending on the space available, consider widening or lengthening the deck on its current level. But many homeowners would like to add new levels to the deck, connected by stairs. However, if you are not too concerned that the new decking material would not match the old, this is your best option. Installing the new deck on another level would make the transition much less uncomfortable and unappealing. Furthermore, the new expanded level also does not have to be separated by a whole flight of stairs. This means a couple of steps will be enough. Additionally, having a multi-leveled deck is a plus for entertaining as it offers lots of comfortable spaces.