A deck or patio can make your backyard more usable and transform it into the perfect outdoor hangout. Although, deciding between the two can be tricky. Both are favorable in their separate ways, but there are aspects that you may not have considered that could save you thousands of dollars.
Plus, blindly walking into a renovation could lead to disappointment if you don’t do your research in advance. Before finalizing your choice, you’ll have to consider a few things, such as the slope of your yard, your budget, and how you want to use your outdoor space.
The Difference Between a Patio and a Deck
Patios are typically made of concrete, and they’re level with the ground most of the time. On the other hand, decks are raised off the ground and made of wood. That is unless you choose another decking material such as composite or vinyl. Though, wood is the most popular choice because it looks natural and is affordable.
The Condition and Slope of your Yard
When choosing between a wooden deck and a concrete patio, the condition and slope of your yard are important factors. Patios are great for flat or low-sloping yards since they’re mostly level with the ground. However, installing a patio will be difficult if your yard is a steep hill. The contractors will have to take extra steps to prepare the ground, which could add thousands of dollars to your bill.
For this reason, people with steep-sloped yards opt for a deck. Since they’re raised, they’re easier and cheaper to install. Plus, you can get a multi-level deck to make your entire backyard space more useable if you choose to do so.
Potential Usage and Versatility
How do you want to use your backyard space? This question is vital because decks have weight limitations. For example, if you’re installing an outdoor kitchen, it may be too heavy for a deck. But if you only wish to use a grill to cook outside, then you’ll be fine. In addition, since there are safety concerns with building a deck, most states require a permit before construction begins.
Contrarily, a patio can withstand heavy objects, so you have a bit more versatility when it comes to renovations. They also offer more flexibility in design and color compared to wood.
A patio is generally easier to install than a deck. However, the ground beneath needs to be properly compacted and prepared first. You can’t just dig a hole, pour some concrete, and call it a day. For the longest-lasting result, it’s best to hire a concrete contractor in Howard County, IN. Plus, utilizing the help of a professional gives you more creative options since they have the experience and know-how to customize your patio.
Since a deck is usually attached to the house, you’ll need to make sure you can safely do it without damaging your home. Additionally, before getting started, the deck’s structural supports need to be adequately cemented into the ground to keep its integrity.
Patios are way cheaper to put in than decks. However, if your backyard is uneven and not structurally supportive, it will end up costing more because of the additional work the contractors need to put in. In this case, a deck would be cheaper.
Of course, the cost of a deck also depends on the materials used. For example, wooden decks are cheaper than composite, but they don’t last as long as a patio. Therefore, you’ll end up spending more money, in the long run, replacing your deck.
Both decks and patios need to be pressure washed every year or so. Additionally, remember that you’ll need to refinish wood decks every few years, or they’ll become susceptible to splintering, termites, or rotting. Not to mention, the color fades quickly and can turn green if you fall behind on upkeep.
On the other hand, patios are much easier to maintain. You’ll just need to keep it clean and keep an eye out for cracks, which can cause further damage if not repaired quickly. However, repairing small cracks in concrete is an easy and inexpensive DIY project.
A concrete patio or wooden deck can make your backyard an enjoyable place to hang out. Plus, it will increase your home’s value, so you’ll get more during resale. If your budget is tight and you have a relatively flat yard, a patio may be better for you.
But if your yard is steep, you may choose a deck over a patio to save money. However, maintenance costs would be higher in the long run. Therefore, you have to weigh your financial circumstances carefully to determine this renovation’s impact on your wallet.