How to Plan and Build Your Ideal Luxury Deck

November 18, 2022 | Exterior

Thinking of upgrading your outdoor living area?

According to reports, 90% of Americans say that their outdoor living areas are more valuable than ever. One of the reasons for this is the rise of indoor/outdoor living. 

Instead of being content with a basic backyard, many Americans are reinventing their outdoor areas to be more functional and high-end. 

Gone are the days when a blank backyard ruled supreme. Now, reports show that this is the least popular option. Only 28% of respondents chose this type of space, while the rest had their sights set on things like a luxury deck, patios, and outdoor rooms.

Installing a beautiful deck will not only upgrade your outdoor area, but it can also expand your living space and make it easier to entertain in style. 

But, before you build a deck, you need to plan the project properly. If you skip this essential step, you’re likely to run into construction and design dilemmas, overrun your budget, and have your deck installation turn into a nightmare. 

Avoid all of this and keep reading to find out how to plan your luxury deck like a pro.

Get Clear On Your Budget

If you want to build a deck, the first thing to get clear on is your budget. Decide roughly how much you’re willing to spend on your deck in total. 

While you’re working out your budget, keep in mind that most homeowners tend to go over their pre-determined renovation/remodel budgets by between 10%-15%. 

If you can factor this excess into your budget from the beginning, this can save you stress and complications down the line. For instance, if you’re utilizing a line of credit to finance your luxury deck, it’s much simpler to apply for the full sum in one go. Rather than having to take additional credit out toward the end of the project. 

Another thing to keep in mind when planning a deck installation is that you might recoup a considerable portion of the cost if you sell your home. 

For instance, estimates show that homeowners can enjoy an ROI of 60%-70% on a firepit feature alone. If you have the capital available, it might make financial sense to invest in these types of luxury features. 

Not only will they raise the value of your property, but they’ll also add value to your lifestyle. 

List Your Needs and Wants

Speaking of features, the next step is to list out all your needs and wants for the space. 

Don’t limit yourself to budget concerns at this stage, simply note down everything you’d want in your dream space. 

Think about how you’re going to be using the area and what your downtime looks like. For instance, do you love nothing better than inviting a few friends around to watch a ball game and relax?

If so, you might want to gear your luxury deck amenities to accommodate this. If you enjoy mixing up cocktails for your guests, you could also consider adding an outdoor bar feature. 

Or alternatively, maybe you love cooking and hosting. In this case, you might want to include a state-of-the-art outdoor kitchen or barbeque area in your deck installation

Or perhaps you don’t entertain much, but you love soaking up the sun with a good book on the weekends. If so, we’d focus on creating comfortable seating that can even accommodate an afternoon nap. For instance, you might want to plan in a sectional sofa, a chaise lounge, and swing seat, or a hammock installation. 

If you enjoy sitting around an open fire, we’d definitely recommend a fire pit. 

Also, don’t forget about things like hot tubs, pools, and water features. Elements like these can go a long way to making your deck feel luxurious and high-end. 

Once you’ve made a list of all the features you’d like, sort them into non-negotiables and nice-to-haves. For instance, if you plan on doing a lot of outdoor entertaining on your new deck, outdoor kitchen and bar features may be a non-negotiable, while a hot tub might be a nice-to-have. 

This will help guide your decisions once you start getting quotes and prices for the project. Instead of going over budget on things that aren’t ultra-important to you, you can make sure you prioritize the key features. 

Consider the Seasons

You should also think about the seasons, the aspects of your house, and the general weather conditions. Do you want to position your deck to catch cooling breezes, or do you need it to be as sheltered as possible?

You’ll also want to decide whether to have a covered or open deck. Open decks give you more of an outdoor feel. But, they can be difficult to keep clean, and they’re also not great for entertaining in uncertain weather. 

If you opt for an open deck without a roof, you will need to be prepared to wash down the area more frequently and store certain items during the winter. You will also need to invest in high-quality outdoor-grade furniture and fabrics that can withstand exposure to the elements and direct sun. 

If you opt for a covered deck, keep in mind that this will block direct sunlight from any windows that face your new deck. If this is going to make the adjacent rooms too dark, you can choose clear roof sheets or a mixture of clear and opaque roofing. 

Clear roof sheets let in more light, but they also make outdoor areas and four-season rooms hotter in summer. 

Plan for the Perfect View

When planning out the placement of your luxury deck, don’t forget about the view. Ideally, you want to place your deck on the side of your home that has the best view.

But, if this isn’t possible or practical, you can also think of ways to improve the view from your new deck. For instance, if tall hedges or trees are blocking a stunning backdrop, you can look into having them pruned to open up the vista. 

If you don’t have a perfect line of sight for your view, you can also consider a raised deck over something like a terrace deck. 

Alternatively, if you have an unattractive view you want to hide, you can erect privacy fencing or trellises to block out any eyesores. 

Don’t Leave Lighting to the Last Moment

One of the things a lot of people forget about when planning an outdoor space is lighting. If you want to enjoy your new deck in the evenings, lighting planning is key. 

Outdoor light features not only give you light to see by, but they can also highlight attractive elements of your deck and set the mood. Ideally, you want to have a layered mix of ambient lighting, task lighting, and mood lighting. 

Ambient lighting is the overall lighting that illuminates the space. Task lighting can include brighter fixtures over outdoor cooking and bar areas, step lights, etc.

For mood lighting, you can consider things like string lights, wall sconces, and uplights. 

While you’re planning the lighting needs of your new deck, you might also want to think about the rest of your outdoor space. Do you have enough garden lighting?

If you’re going to get electrical work done, now might be the ideal time to install things like path lighting and landscape lighting. This will upgrade your entire outdoor area, and create a more dynamic backdrop at night. 

For example, if you have a beautiful tree or a water feature, illuminating these with a spotlight will make them visible from your deck at night, and help to visually open up your yard after sunset. 

Finally, while we’re on the topic of electrics, think about what other electrical needs you might have for your new deck. Do you want a few well-placed outlets from which you can charge your devices or a laptop?

Maximize Functionality Through Thoughtful Design

While you’re mapping out what features you want, take some time to think about any other needs or issues you might be having with your space. For instance, maybe you like to entertain outdoors, but you don’t necessarily want a full-feature outdoor kitchen.

Statistics show that 62% of experts agree that outdoor dining areas are one of the most desired living spaces. However, not everyone necessarily wants to cook outdoors. 

Even if you’re doing most of your preparation indoors, it could still be handy to include some storage solutions in your design plan to house items you use for outdoor entertaining. Maybe you have a designated set of plates, cutlery, and glassware that you usually have to carry outdoors whenever you entertain al fresco.

Stashing these in an attractive built-in set of cabinets can streamline your life and enhance the functionality of your deck design. 

Or maybe you have a collection of outdoor activity items that are cluttering up your garage? Things like balls and bats can also be housed in storage solutions on your deck.

Create a Mood Board

Besides the functional elements, you should also take some time to get clear on the overall design aesthetic you want for your new deck. 

Ideally, the design of your deck installation should tie into the existing design style of your home. For instance, if you have a Tuscan-style home, you definitely don’t want to tack an ultra-contemporary deck onto it, or vice versa. 

Your deck design should also trigger the right feeling.

Do you want your deck to feel like a cozy, tropical sanctuary? A minimal space with a sleek design? Or a traditional space that invokes a sense of grandeur and luxury?

Along with the overall feel, you should also get clear on what color palette you’d like. 

If you’re not sure exactly what you want, you can start by browsing through inspirational pictures in magazines or on Pinterest. 

Save the images that inspire you the most. You can use these as a simple mood board that you can refer to or share with your chosen design experts. 

Team Up With the Right Experts

Speaking of experts, we’d highly recommend that you hire a trustworthy team to help you bring your beautiful deck to life. 

Unless you’re a seasoned DIY pro with hands-on construction experience, building a luxury deck by yourself is a very tall order.

The right team of professionals will ensure that:

  • Your project goes smoothly
  • You have the correct planning permission
  • Your deck is structurally sound and adheres to the applicable building codes
  • The design is in keeping with your home’s style
  • Luxury features are properly installed and up to code
  • Your deck will be long-lasting and easy to maintain

Instead of mixing and matching things like design services, architectural services, and contractors, we’d also recommend that you choose an integrated team. 

If you don’t, you’ll end up having to be the project manager coordinating the different contractors and teams. 

Bringing a remodel, home extension, or deck project to life is an involved process. If you have to manage multiple contractors, you’re bound to run into problems somewhere in the process. 

Besides causing stress and coordination issues, being the go-between can also be very time-consuming. Instead of being able to sit back, enjoy the creative elements, and rest assured that you’re getting a well-planning deck you might spend weeks (or months) fielding estimates and dealing with construction-related disruption in your home. 

Here at Michael James Remodeling, we know how stressful home projects can become. This is why we offer a full-service experience. With us, you don’t have to worry about any of the nitty-gritty issues that most homeowners face with home projects. 

Our design, architectural, and construction teams work seamlessly together to bring your projects to life.

Are You Ready to Press Go On Your Luxury Deck?

Adding a luxury deck to your home can maximize your living space and give you more room to entertain, relax, and enjoy your outdoor areas. It can also increase the value of your home. 

If you want a team of pros to handle every area of your luxury deck installation, you’ve come to the right place. 

We deliver a full suite of integrated services. Instead of running around after contractors, you can relax and enjoy the creative part while we handle the all legwork.

We also do everything possible to minimize disruption during remodeling and extension projects. Our teams protect your home from dust and dirt, and we do a full clean-up every day to ensure your home doesn’t look or feel like a construction site. 

Drop us an email to get started discussing your dream luxury deck.

Screened porch with wooden ceiling and contemporary furniture set, designed for outdoor living by Michael James Remodeling.

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