A Kick-Start Guide for Homeowners Looking to Revamp Their Outdoor Space

When it comes to enhancing your outdoor living experience, the first thing you want to do is assess your decking situation. A beautiful deck, after all, is really the foundation for great summer spaces. Once you’ve got a solid structure in place, you can build out from there with other projects. Keep in mind though, if you do need to replace an old deck or perhaps install a new deck, it’s one of the more challenging DIY projects to take on. So to ensure the smoothest possible build, there are several things you want to factor in when designing your own deck.

Namely, it’s an investment in time and labor. You really want to get it right the first time. That’s why you need a solid, stable building material that will last for decades and look great with minimal maintenance. Thankfully, pressure treated Southern Yellow Pine (SYP) checks all these boxes. 

It’s also a beautiful wood with a distinct grain pattern and golden honey hue. These versatile characteristics can complement any style of outdoor decor. For that reason you have a lot of decking design options when it comes to transforming your outdoor living space with SYP. But there’s no need to get overwhelmed. A little bit of prep and planning beforehand can go a long way.

3 DIY Tips to Streamline Your Decking Design Process

Choosing the right material is an integral part of designing your own deck.

Brainstorm Configuration for Designing Your Own Deck

Make a list of everything you want to use your deck for –  i.e. BBQing, entertaining, hot tubbing, etc. Then, roughly sketch out how these different zones will fit in and interact with each other. Graph paper is great for this step.To help get the creative juices flowing, visit our gallery of amazing deck ideas. 

Then take your sketch ideas outside and map out your proposed design with rope or sticks to see if your proposed layout will work with your allotted space. If you plan on using any existing patio furniture, place that there to get a greater sense of scale with all the other components.

Double Check Code Compliance Before Building

Before you begin constructing your dream deck, check with all applicable building codes in your region to ensure you have all the proper permits and all local requirements. It can be quite costly and time-consuming to get a city-ordered modification after you’ve completed your structure. 

And if you’re including a pretty pergola or any kind of standing structure that’s higher than a property-dividing fence, you may want to consider running your plans by your neighbor. This small courtesy can go a long way in creating good will. 

Source Best Decking Material for Long-lasting Structure

Whether you’re building your dream deck with your own hands or collaborating with a contractor, you want a material that’s easy to work with. SYP, it just so happens, holds nails and other fasteners particularly well, making it ideal for residential construction.  

Building a deck with SYP is also a green choice. From cradle to grave, using wood instead of manmade materials benefits climate stabilization in a number of ways and there’s zero waste. That’s because all parts of a tree get used during harvest –  from bark for landscaping to chips for making paper. So, you can feel good about building your backyard oasis with SYP.