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Old 02-22-2009, 12:47 PM   #1
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How big should a deck be?


I'm thinking about adding a deck off of the kitchen. I was wondering if there's a rule of thumb as to how big it should be. This will only be about 18 inces or so off the ground.

Also, if you can recommend any good websites with deck plans, I'm listening. This will be on the south side of the house in sun from about 8:00 until about 3:00, so I want to plan something to shade the sun. I'm in Kansas City, so it does get hot here.

Thanks

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Old 02-22-2009, 01:00 PM   #2
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How big should a deck be?


It should be as big as you want and can afford.

I did see on one of those HGTV appraisal shows that big decks are going out of style, so if you're planning on selling it sometime soon, I'd show some restraint. But, if you're like me and don't really care much about resale value, get one as big as you want for your lifestyle. But what do I know?

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Old 02-22-2009, 01:03 PM   #3
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How big should a deck be?


I second that ! BOB
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Old 02-22-2009, 01:28 PM   #4
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How big should a deck be?


I would abandon the deck idea and put in a stone or masonary patio.
Decks require time to take care of and whatever decking material you use, the structure is wood.
You do a stone patio correctly, you never do it again.
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Old 02-22-2009, 01:31 PM   #5
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How big should a deck be?


When I was designing our deck, here's what I was told to think about. If you're going to have a table and chairs on your deck, make sure there is room to walk around the table when there are people sitting in all the chairs and enough space for a person who is sitting down to be able to stand up and push the chair back far enough to be able to step away from the table comfortably.

If you're going to have a grill on the deck, plan a space big enough for it to be in an area where people don't have to walk close to it to get to the steps or in and out of the house. It also needs to be a safe distance from the house and not under an eve.

Put the step(s) off to one side, not in the center.

If you entertain a lot, you might want to make the deck big enough for several tables.

I say make it as big as your yard and budget will allow. You won't be sorry. The only problem is, the bigger the deck, the less grass you'll have to mow .
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Old 02-22-2009, 01:58 PM   #6
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How big should a deck be?


Excessively large decks can actually be a turnoff for people if you decide to sell your home. To me, a deck is just something else I have to maintain as a homeowner. In the Kansas City area, I'm seeing a lot of homeowners choosing to go with reasonably sized decks instead of huge ones. A lot of people are opting for the low maintenance of patio areas, especially if they want large outdoor living areas.

One thing to consider is your city's requirements. Many cities in this area don't require permits for decks that are less than 30" off the ground, but the setback requirements are still enforced. The setbacks totally depend on your city and your lot's residential zoning class.
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Old 02-22-2009, 02:12 PM   #7
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How big should a deck be?


I have a 8' deck that wraps round my sun room
It matches up to the back of my garage - reason for 8' wide
It's 24' long at the back of the house, then wraps around another 8' to the hot tub (so 8x16 on that side)



Out back I built another 12x12 deck off the pool patio for a picnic table. Eventually a pergola will be built over this deck. If we didn't have the pool area I might have made the deck off the house larger. I also built the 8' picnic table for less then $100
This area borders my ponds & veggie garden



I'd also consider a patio at ground level instead of a deck
I added about 450' sq ft of patio to the pool area - no maintenance
A lot of this depends upon the size of the house & back yard layout

Last edited by Scuba_Dave; 02-22-2009 at 05:33 PM. Reason: sp
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Old 02-22-2009, 05:16 PM   #8
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How big should a deck be?


Thanks, you've brought up some valid points, especially in making it big enough to walk around stuff, like a grill, planters, etc. I will build it as big as I can afford, but it won't be something that will need runway lights.
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Old 02-22-2009, 05:41 PM   #9
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How big should a deck be?


If you're looking at installing some built-in benches (2 x 10's or 2 x 12's, for example) around the periphery or any section of the deck, consider those little composite brackets that only take up 4" of your deck space.
We did that and appreciate the extra space we can use for...well, whatever.
Just throwing out some ides.
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Old 02-22-2009, 05:43 PM   #10
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How big should a deck be?


Quote:
Originally Posted by dynamo View Post
If you're looking at installing some built-in benches (2 x 10's or 2 x 12's, for example) around the periphery or any section of the deck, consider those little composite brackets that only take up 4" of your deck space.
We did that and appreciate the extra space we can use for...well, whatever.
Just throwing out some ides.
Here's a pic I googled that are exactly as the ones we used:

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Old 02-22-2009, 06:06 PM   #11
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How big should a deck be?


Very nice pink flamingo yard art Scuba_Dave!
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Old 02-22-2009, 06:17 PM   #12
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How big should a deck be?


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Originally Posted by thekctermite View Post
Very nice pink flamingo yard art Scuba_Dave!
I actually have some white ones too
One of my hobbies - decorating for Halloween & Christmas led to selling stuff like this. Most are brand new from Mfg, but I do run across some used ones now & then

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Old 02-22-2009, 06:20 PM   #13
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How big should a deck be?


Oh good lord.
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Old 02-22-2009, 06:28 PM   #14
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How big should a deck be?


No, THIS is OH GOOD LORD!!!





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Old 02-22-2009, 07:57 PM   #15
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How big should a deck be?


Quote:
Excessively large decks can actually be a turnoff for people if you decide to sell your home. To me, a deck is just something else I have to maintain as a homeowner. In the Kansas City area, I'm seeing a lot of homeowners choosing to go with reasonably sized decks instead of huge ones. A lot of people are opting for the low maintenance of patio areas, especially if they want large outdoor living areas.
I can't understand making it smaller intentionally, unless it is a smaller yard and the deck would use too much space. The maintenance part of it stinks, but if you use a sealer like One Time Wood, you only have to do it every 7-10 years. It's too bad Trex isn't what it says it is.

If your back door is just above ground level, I agree that a patio would be better. If it's done right.

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