Is Building a Deck Right For You

Creating a personal backyard haven can be a great way to find a special area to unwind and relax. It can add to a family’s enjoyment of their home and even help “couch potatoes” choose to spend a little more time getting some much-needed fresh air.

But with the number of choices available to make this dream a reality, it’s hard to determine what the best route is for an individual homeowner. There are a number of routes that can be taken, some cost a little more than others, but they all provide some great recreational possibilities and open the window for enjoying a little more time outdoors. The most common backyard enhancements chosen by homeowners are decks, screen rooms and glass enclosed sunrooms. Here are some basic pros and cons of each


Decks generally are simple wooden structures that enable a homeowner to bring their outdoors fun off the ground. By elevating the outdoor fun, a deck keeps some of the insects at bay and creates a “space” for playing, working and relaxing.

Decks are often much less expensive than the other two options and they’re fairly simple to build, depending on chosen design. They can be partially or fully shaded, and even include railings and stairs, but they typically are not closed in with screen or glass. This means full protection from the elements on bad days isn’t possible, but that’s actually part of their charm.

Screen rooms

Think of these as a cross between a plain deck and a fully enclosed glass sunroom and that’s about the right impression of these rooms. By offering walls and a roof, these rooms give a little more protection from the elements and bugs, but they are not meant to offer year-round use. They are typically cheaper than glass sunrooms and more expensive than a basic deck.


When full glass goes into the walls and even roofs of these structures, eye-catching and beautiful is typically the result. These rooms are more expensive than their two similar counterparts, but with the right design they can be enjoyed year-round and even include heating and cooling. The advantage here is the year-round use. The disadvantages are the costs involved and the fact these rooms don’t quite provide the open feel of a deck even if they give the illusion of it.

It’s up to an individual homeowner or family to decide what works best for them. Any of the above choices create a fantastic space for relaxing, entertaining and even just taking in a backyard habitat.