Open Accessibility Menu

How Big Should I Build My Deck?

Five Considerations for “Right-Sizing” Your Backyard Deck

When planning a new deck, one of the first questions homeowners ask is how big should I build my deck? A deck that is too small or too big may become underutilized. At Archadeck of Raleigh, our aim is to design a “Goldilocks” deck for you. In other words, we want it to be just right! Determining how much square footage is needed for all the ways you want to use your new space is a great starting point. Below are some additional considerations to get you started:

1. How much space do you need for how you plan to use the deck?

Do you plan to use your deck for grilling, dining, entertaining, something else, or all the above? How much space will you need for these activities? Don’t forget to factor in “buffer space” for traffic flow around furniture and accessories. One rule of thumb is to allocate about 20 square feet per person to ensure comfortable movement. Sometimes creating designated areas for different activities can be achieved by using multi-level decks.

2. What size deck best fits the scale of your house?

Matching the scale of your new deck with your existing home structure is important if you want to have visual harmony once the new and existing structures are together. If a deck is very small or very large in comparison to a house, it will be noticeable and can make the deck look like an odd add-on, rather than a seamless new addition. However, a large contrast in scale may make sense for certain architectural styles. For example, an under- or over-sized deck may work well on a home with a modern aesthetic where certain proportions are exaggerated.

3. What size deck fits best in your budget?

The cost of building a deck can vary depending on various factors. Materials, design complexity, and labor conditions all contribute to the overall cost.small deck size Doubling the size of a deck does not necessarily double the cost. Various built-in features, top-tier materials, and finishes can increase the price regardless of size. If you want a larger-sized deck, prioritizing size over higher-end design elements can help you stay within your budget while still achieving your desired outcome.

4. Could HOAs, local regulations, or local permits limit your deck size?

Before building a new deck, it’s critical to check HOA guidelines, local building codes, regulations, and permit requirements. This will ensure the size of your deck is compliant with setback requirements, height restrictions, and impervious surface limits. Failure to obtain the necessary permits can result in legal issues and potential fines. Archadeck can help assess and navigate specific regulations in your area to avoid any complications during the construction process.

5. How can creative design help you achieve your goals?

If you are limited in the size of your new deck, it is important to get creative with the design to maximize your new space and achieve your goals. For example, built-in benches can serve double duty as railings. Wide staircases can provide additional seating for periodic entertaining. Lighting, planters, or privacy screens can help accent your space with minimal impact on the footprint. Efficient design can even allow smaller decks to accommodate multiple functions. A bigger deck isn’t always better.

If you need help figuring out what size would be the best for your new deck, it is helpful to consult with an expert deck builder such as Archadeck of Raleigh-Durham. We can provide personalized advice and a custom design, based on your needs, home, property, and preferences. Customizing the deck to your aesthetic preferences and functional requirements is important, and seeking professional assistance ensures that the result meets your expectations. If you are ready to start designing a deck in the Greater Triangle, reach out to our team today at 919-973-1523 to request a design consultation. We look forward to working with you!