Low deck later - build patio for now?

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Old 11-12-13, 11:37 AM
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Low deck later - build patio for now?

Hi,

we are having a new house built in NC. It is not elevate at all though, so there is no height to put a normal deck on it.

I would like to build a low one though, but have an option to have a concrete slab laid all the way across the back of the house, rather than just a 10x10 one.

Would this be a good idea, with the idea of putting a low deck on top of it in the future? Any other suggestions?

thanks!
 
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Old 11-12-13, 12:48 PM
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Why would you need a deck if you would already have a patio?
Wooden decks need air flow under them or there going to rot out.
Any patio, stoop, deck needs to be lower then any door openings or water will get in under the threshold.
Why not look into a stamped or stain concrete patio?
stamped concrete - Bing Images
 
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Old 11-12-13, 12:58 PM
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We'd like to end up with a deck - we find them much 'warmer' than a patio.

How much space do they need underneath? Image just a small amount would work to allow water to drain and stop them rotting?

We'd ask them to build the patio as low as possible to allow the deck to remain below door openings, or else we might build some kind of step up to them main deck level.

We're thinking the patio option would be a good, relatively cheap, shortish term solution, allowing us to build the deck later...

Thoughts?
 
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Old 11-12-13, 01:34 PM
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A decorative concrete patio can be just as "warm" as a wooden deck, and it will require far less maintenance to keep it functional than a deck will. And even with periodic cleaning and re-staining, eventually (parts of) the wooden deck will rot out and require replacement--something that won't happen with concrete.

I personally would never consider choosing a wood option over concrete myself. I guess I've just seen to many of the former that have been poorly maintained, including several that I've owned.
 
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Old 11-12-13, 01:42 PM
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Generally a wood deck is not a good idea close to the ground. There is not enough to get the wood up and away from the ground and allow air circulation which leads to short deck life (rot).

How much space under a deck is needed??? You don't want 2x lumber (the beams, joists or floor boards) touching the ground and I would want them up at least 6" but much more would be better. Another problem with a low deck is that critters love to make their home under them. A nice tall deck you can get under their and keep it cleaned out but low decks seem to attract ground hogs & snakes. You really have to do proper screening all around the deck's perimeter and keep grass and shrubbery down so you don't create hiding places for them to burrow under the screen unnoticed.

Personally I'd start picking out a concrete paver and pattern you like.
 
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Old 11-12-13, 02:19 PM
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Me three I've stained lots of decks and have seen them in all kinds of conditions. As noted above, decks need maintenance, air flow to dry them out promptly and won't last as long as concrete.
 
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Old 11-12-13, 08:09 PM
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Thanks for the advice everyone. Hadn't thought about the snakes etc - my wife would freak out if she thought of that

Only problem is that this house builder will only pour a concrete slab - no options for design or pattern etc.. Can pavers etc be laid on top of a concrete slab?
 
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Old 11-13-13, 05:49 AM
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Pavers can go on a concrete slab but better is a compacted stone base, sand & pavers. I would go for the paver patio right up front or nothing at all. Then have the patio you want built. Why waste the money on a concrete slab you don't want?
 
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Old 11-13-13, 05:54 AM
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I'd consider getting with someone that does stamped concrete work. If you can coordinate them with your builder's concrete guy you could have a nice looking patio with probably less cost/work than laying pavers or coming back with exterior tile.
 
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Old 11-13-13, 06:06 AM
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Just have him issue you a credit and get some one else to do it.
Unless you can afford something like an IPE deck built it will be an ongoing mantaince issue from day one.
 
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Old 11-13-13, 08:04 AM
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"I'd consider getting with someone that does stamped concrete work. If you can coordinate them with your builder's concrete guy you could have a nice looking patio with probably less cost/work than laying pavers or coming back with exterior tile."
hmmm - I'll have to look into that - never heard of it. Thx.
 
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Old 11-13-13, 09:41 AM
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having said that, this builder won't let me do much of anything before closing, so that's probably not gonna be an option

The home comes with your typical 10x10 patio - I was extending it to 10x25 to have a base for whatever I do next. Maybe I should see if I can get nothing put there and a credit for the 10x10
 
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Old 11-17-13, 09:56 PM
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I'm almost finished with my low deck. I didn't understand going into this that low decks are much, much harder to build. Because you're using such small dimensions of lumber, it must be supported extensively.

I agree with the thought of putting nothing there now, then putting down paver base and a patio.
 
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