Rooftop Decks - How to Bring Deck Designs to New HeightsWritten by Chris Nolan on
Although rooftop decks have been around for some time, they are becoming more sophisticated and highly functional. Rooftop decks are not only making a comeback, they are becoming better than ever before. Check out these rooftop deck designs.
Especially in cities, where space is tight and a surging real estate market is making urban homes a more attractive value proposition and a place to live. Ground level decks on homes in city areas often have obscured or limited views. But two or three or more stories above, you are king of your world. A rooftop deck can provide a perch for great views of the surrounding areas – and offer a very different perspective than a ground level deck.
Architects, designers and builders are treating this premium outdoor space as a valuable increase of living area for your home. They are designing modern features and functions never dreamed of years ago. The rooftop deck space is becoming another canvas or medium for an architect to design on and for a builder to fit and finish to their client’s needs.
Trained professionals such as architects, landscape architects, builders, green builders and master craftsmen are all getting in on the action. The rooftop deck space is no longer just a place for a couple of lounge chairs, a grill, cooler and a radio.
Many of the rooftop deck design trends we are seeing have some amazing features:
- Rooftop gardens
- Shaded pergolas
- Outdoor kitchen areas
- Outdoor dining areas
- Entertainment areas
- Built-in benches
- Hot tubs (if your roof can handle the load)
- Outdoor furniture arranged like a comfy indoor room
Rooftop decks are fantastic areas to relax and enjoy life, away from the indoors and high above the street noise and hustle and bustle of the mere mortals below. "I'm king of the world!" Rooftop decks are a great away to literally ‘get away from it all’.
Looking for some great rooftop deck ideas? Need a little rooftop deck design inspiration? Download the free "Rooftop Deck Design Ideas Portfolio" for some creative encouragement.
Building a long-lasting rooftop deck will be a very different space than that tree fort you may have cobbled together as a child. A rooftop deck can still be that much fun though, you just need to plan it out a little better beforehand.
Before building a beautiful rooftop or balcony deck space, there are lots of important items you should consider…and you don’t have to take this journey alone. Consulting the appropriate experts before construction is absolutely the best place to start.
Here’s a partial list of some very important design, safety and overall happiness considerations:
- Is your existing roof system strong enough to support the additional load of a rooftop deck? Consulting a professional engineer or registered architect should give you some valuable insight as to how much additional weight your roof can safely carry. If your roof cannot carry additional weight, these design professionals may have solutions for you to consider. Solutions could range from additional joists to fortify your existing roof structure or it might be as simple as using strong but lightweight aluminum joists for your deck frame.
- What will you be using your rooftop deck for? Architects and design professionals have lots of experience creating spaces that work effectively for your specific needs. A rooftop deck is no exception – the more information you can share with your designer, the happier you’ll be long term. They carefully consider your needs, such as traffic flow, planned usage of each portion of the space. Will there be planters on your roof deck? A hot tub? Dancing? Any of these planned usages will affect the design. Hiring an architect is an important consideration.
- Are there fire code considerations or other building code factors that you are unaware of? Checking with local building officials or an experienced licensed builder that is familiar with your local requirements is essential for safe and proper construction. Your cousin Bob might be a great handyman and will work for beer, but that doesn’t mean he knows the code requirements. Consulting an experienced expert is a smart move. Do it.
- What type of decking are you planning to use? Rooftop decks face an extreme amount of weather and UV exposure. Choosing a decking material that will perform well in this extreme environment is a critical decision for long term success and satisfaction. Some materials simply won’t last up in the rooftop aerie you are creating. Other decking materials will perform much better. Do some research and find out which decking material works best for you, it is well worth your time.
- Will you need access to anything beneath your deck? If so, it is best to plan for ways to get there before you design and build your paradise. If there are cables, telephone lines, wires, HVAC access, plan for it. There’s no need to take your deck apart later, especially when you have the option to be prepared for it before you get started.
A rooftop deck could become the most popular ‘room’ in your house - or business. Go ahead, enjoy life. These serene rooftop oases can let you recharge your personal batteries. And, oh yeah, the cellphone reception is usually pretty good up there, too.
If you are considering a rooftop or balcony deck for your home or office, the Eurotec deck system is an excellent option to consider. It offers adjustable deck pedestals, an aluminum joist and you can use full length hardwood deck boards for great looks and long lasting performance.