Like patios, decks may be constructed to form an outdoor room, extending the inside of your home into your backyard.
But decks are undoubtedly even more versatile than patios because they can be build in just about any environment however steep or rocky.
Of course a deck is a solid structure, and you’re going to need some sort of plans to work from both for setting out and for the building process.
The good news is that whether you want to build your own deck or call someone in to do it for you, there are plenty of free deck design programs that will help you create exactly what you want. Not only will they give you details of the materials you need to buy, but they will usually give you visuals that show exactly what your new deck will look like when it’s complete.
Software that Allows you to Design Your Own Deck
Look no further than the World Wide Web for a multitude of free design-a-deck software options. Similar, but usually a lot less complicated than the software used by professional landscapers, architects and designers, free deck design software will normally allow you to choose the size, shape and even the color (and sometimes wood or other material) of the deck of your dreams. You can add different levels as well as stairs, railings and other features, until you are happy with what you have created.
Of course you are probably thinking, “Free – nothing comes free nowadays”. But there are various reasons that companies have set up web sites that offer free software for garden and other structures, including the fact that many sell the materials required to build the design you have chosen. Others will provide you with a checklist of what you need, plus a materials list, tips of how to put the deck together, and then suggest several reliable retailers in your area. Most will be working on a commission basis, getting a kickback of some sort from the supplier. This is not a bad thing because it’s also their reputation on the line.
Generally you will be required to register with the web site offering the free software. This means, of course, that you are going to be included in their database and can expect to get news, product information and so on from them in the future. This should be an advantage if you are into home improvement. However you will almost always be given an easy option to stop receiving mail.
There is also software that you can buy, that is not linked specifically to any company. These programs will usually enable you to create both 2D and 3D home deck design plans. I’ve got one of these and it was pretty cheap to buy, and not difficult to learn to use.
If you do decide to buy a program, it’s a good idea to search the Internet for reputable review sites which point out the advantages and any disadvantages of different programs. Alternatively go into a real store where staff members are able to show you how the different types of software work … or otherwise do a short study course before you get started.
Deck Design Programs Used by Designers:
Perhaps the greatest advantage of allowing a professional designer to design a deck for you is that they already have examples of work they have completed using their deck design programs. Most also have the experience to create a virtual image of your backyard using a digital photograph of the property. So instead of looking at a deck in a nebulous location, you are able to visualize exactly what the deck will look like in your own outdoor space.