What are the popular decking styles right now?
The traditional rectangular deck with a hand rail will always be popular. However, homeowners are increasingly looking for more contemporary styles and features. Ideas to consider are decks that "wrap-around" the house, decks that are built on several levels or in unsual shapes. A sunken planting box for planting trees or small bedding plants can look great. Or consider raised planting boxes which incorporates seating. Seating made from the same material as the deck is always a nice feature. Lighting, especially recessed and spotlighting looks wonderful in the evening. And if you really want to go for broke, how about including a hot tub "cut out" in the deck.
Have you noticed any new trends?
A popular trend now is to include a patio and a deck in the garden. One to get get the morning sun and one the evening sun. That way the garden can includes two beautiful natural materials - stone and wood.
What should I look for when choosing a company to build my deck?
Remember that the most important part of a deck is that part that you don't really see! When choosing someone to build your deck, ask about their preparation work. Using proper materials and workmanship e.g. screws versus nails is what will make your deck stand the test of time.
How much will a deck cost?
Anywhere from 1300euro for a basic 10x10foot deck right up to several thousand euro for a large deck with all the bells and whistles.
What's the life span of a deck?
A wooden deck built from hardwood or pressure treated softwood which is correctly maintained can last for 15 years or more. Composite decks made from wood fibre and recycled plastic are also an option if you want a longer lifespan.
What maintenance is required?
You should give your deck a good clean at least once a year with a stiff brush or a pressure spray. This prevents a build up of algae which will make the deck slippery. It also removes debris from between the boards which will encourage decay (yes - think of flossing your teeth!)
If the decking timber has been stained, it will need to be restained every 2 or 3 years. Alternatively, you may prefer to leave it and allow the deck to develop a natural weathered and bleached appearance.