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Decks & Patios

Hardscaping 101: Decks & Patios

Think of a deck or patio as an instant extra room. Nothing will expand your living space faster. 

The difference between a deck and a patio? A patio is built at ground level, on a flat surface, and typically is constructed of a “permanent” material such as stone pavers, brick, or poured concrete. A deck floats in the air, supported by footings, at a height of anywhere from a few inches to many feet and can be built on an existing slope.

Deck frames typically are built of wood or steel supports. Deck flooring choices include natural wood, composite materials, bamboo, and pressure-treated lumber. For an overview on choices (and their costs) see Everything You Need to Know About Decking Materials.

For more pros and cons, read our Hardscaping 101 guides on bluestone, brick, wood deck tiles, stone deck tiles, decomposed granite, and concrete (pre-cast and poured-in-place) to determine which decking material  or pavers to use for your deck or patio.

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Decks & Patios: Best Materials & Tools