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Roof top decks to Elevate Your Space

November 01, 2021

Roof decks are highly sought after in homes with flat roofs. Roof deck are common in urban areas and allow you to better appreciate your surroundings and increase the amount of space available.

There is no better place to relax than on a roof deck, where you can enjoy the view and precious time with family and friends.

But what is the appeal of a rooftop deck design? Perhaps it's the exhilarating view, a popular space for entertaining, the perfect spot for a high-rise garden.

Whatever the reason that prompted you to consider a rooftop deck design, this project deserves a serious design. Before we talk about the idea of a rooftop deck, you need to do some preparatory work.

deck boards | rooftop deck ideas

1. Check building codes and HOA restrictions

The first step in rooftop deck construction is to first determine if you can own a rooftop deck. Check all local building laws, especially if you live in a community where you must follow homeowner association rules. If you're not sure what to do, you can also ask your local deck contractor, who will be able to help you determine if codes apply to roof decks.

Can your roof structure support the extra weight? A building code official may be able to help you here. Or maybe not. At the very least, they may know what the load requirements are in your area. You may also need a master builder or structural engineer to determine the load capacity of your roof. They can determine if your existing roof can support the extra weight of your deck. Never build a rooftop deck space without checking this first.

2. Ensure the construction environment

Often, roof deck construction requires more workspace than ground-level decks. You will need to determine how the construction crew will access your roof, whether by indoor stairs leading to the roof or outdoor scaffolding. Some houses may even require crane access to the roof deck, which means you must have enough space for the crane to move around trees or other obstructions.

3. Plan the surrounding landscape

When it comes to roof decks, the surrounding landscape of trees will be a very important part. Trees provide natural shade and add an attractive natural ambiance to the rooftop terrace space. Not to mention, they also provide a bit of privacy away from your neighbors.

Depending on how the trees on your property related to where you want your deck to be, you may need to cut down some trees or make plans to plant new ones for future growth.

You can also install built-in plant containers on your deck. Containers of plants and shrubs located around your deck can help provide the same benefits of privacy and shade.

4. Choose the right decking material

Decking materials selection is important, even more so for roof deck construction than for ground-level decks. Rooftop decks will experience harsher natural environments, including sun, wind, and rain, and snow. Not all decking materials will work well for roof decks, so be sure to do your research before choosing.

Pressure-treated wood can splinter, requires a lot of maintenance, and often requires a 12-inch gap underneath, which makes it less suitable for most roof decks. Hardwood decking can be quite expensive and is not suitable for homeowners looking for an environmentally friendly option.

Composite decking is very adaptable to the environment, requires little maintenance, is cool to the touch, and doesn't splinter easily. Better yet, you can use composite materials for all aspects of roof deck construction: flooring, siding, stairs, railings, benches, gazebos. Anything you want to build with wood can be built with composites to create a beautiful and cohesive design for your rooftop living space.

concrete patio | capped composite decking

5. Pick the right rooftop decks furniture

The right furniture can transform a simple rooftop deck into a comfortable outdoor living space. Just like choosing the right materials to build your rooftop deck, it is extremely important to choose rooftop decking furniture that can withstand direct sunlight and rain.

When choosing outdoor furniture that will last, look for furniture that is rated for outdoor use, is easy to clean, and is fade and stain-resistant.

6. Accent with a pergola

Another benefit of a rooftop deck is that you can enjoy the bright unobstructed sky. Sometimes, however, the sun can be too intense. If you want just the right amount of shade without compromising your experience of resting up high, consider adding a pergola.

Pergolas provide partial shade for outdoor living spaces. More importantly, a unique pergola design can add to the overall feel of the outdoor living space.

7. Add seasonal elements

There are many ideas for making your rooftop deck available almost year-round. Plush blankets will allow you and your guests to rest in comfort while infusing your space with design-rich textures and an inviting atmosphere. You may also consider adding a fire pit so you can continue to enjoy your outdoor space after the temperature drops.

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