By definition, a deck is a flat, elevated surface that connects to the house. It serves several functions. It gives homeowners a place to entertain just beyond the threshold of their door. It provides guests with a vantage point from which to survey the Houston landscape, and it gives everyone a comfortable place to stand and sit.
Perhaps most importantly, it creates transition into the rest of the landscape by serving as a bridge between residential home architecture and Nature. Houston deck builders facilitate this transition building seating areas and staircases in such a way lead guests down into gardens, onto swimming pool patios, and into the far off reaches of the yard into trees, arbors, and outdoor kitchens.
Most Houston deck builders use wood to build these structures. Wood has been the mainstay material used for decades and is still the most popular currently in use. However, wood must be specially treated to (usually through pressure treating and staining) so it will be able to support people and decorations. The most commonly used types of wood are pressure treated pine, cedar, redwood, and a number of exotic woods.
Some homes, however, need decking that is more unique. Contemporary and modern houses are two examples. For these homes, there are now over 100 manmade decking materials such as aluminum, concrete, and composite that Houston deck builders can use to build a custom platform overlooking acontemporary landscape design.
The decking itself is supported by a frame. Houston deck builders base their choice of building materials and frame strength on the size of the decking and the anticipated number of people it is intended to support.
Once the structure is complete, it is then blended into the landscape, usually with some sort of softscape. Sometimes Houston deck builders construct the sides of the deck as a series of terraces that are used as planters. Another method involves lining the perimeter with hedges or very small trees like Japanese Maple. Still another technique calls for planting different species of plants, all at different elevations, so as to create a sense of free-flowing greenery and color into the landscapes and gardens below.
The following deck types represent a few examples of what we are talking about here:
These are the most simple deck types and are almost always built low to the ground. In fact, they are often preferred in many parts of our city because they are ideal for the flat Houston landscape and provide excellent transition from a single-story home into a level back yard.
These decks are built for safety and normally include things like railings and stairs. Houston deck builders normally recommend this style for families with small children or aging relatives who frequently visit the residence.
These decks provide access to upper levels of a two story home—normally a balcony or rooftop lounging area. These structures must be built very sturdy and require a lot of planning and calculation on the part of professional Houston deck builders. The extra supports that go into building them have to be camouflaged for aesthetics—usually with rock facings or skirting. Two story decks should not be built as DIY projects.
Once completed, there are countless ways that deck can be decorated. Planters and benches can line the perimeter to create the semblance of a garden or courtyard. A screened-in gazebo can rise on one side of the deck and provide shade and shelter from summer mosquitoes. The deck can also be curved or angled to create interest, and special railings can be constructed to create a sense of scenic overlook.