Decks vs. Patios FAQs

Adding a deck or patio to your home not only increases its value, but also your available living space. In fact, many homeowners think of their deck or patio as an outdoor living room, dining room or, in some cases, even kitchen. Choosing whether to build a deck or patio deserves careful attention as either can give you years of enjoyment. Hopefully, these FAQs will provide some direction when weighing your options.

Q. Comparatively, how much does a deck and patio increase a home’s value?

A. According to the Gallop Organization a good deck can increase a home’s perceived value by up to 10% by increasing the available living space. A potential buyer will often settle for smaller square footage inside a home if they know that they have the use of an outdoor room.

Patios reign supreme when it comes to home return-on-investment. With a perceived increased value of up to 12% according to the Gallop Organization, having a big and beautiful patio in the backyard is a fantastic way to make the most of your outdoor opportunities.

Q. When it comes to costs, how do they compare?

A. Decks are typically the less expensive option. Even if you choose high-end materials, the labor required to install a deck is less, helping to reduce your overall cost.

While patios may be a large initial investment, a well-built patio can exceed 25 years with no maintenance, holding its value for the entire time. With no pests, rot, molds or natural elements that quickly breakdown stone, a patio will outlast any other outdoor useable space.

Q. In which situations would you consider a deck over a patio, or vice versa?

A. The way a deck is built allows you more creativity in location. The actual structure is built above the ground. This means that tree roots, wet ground, even big slopes can be easily overcome without adding significant expenses.

Originally, patios were limited to flat surfaces, but with new retaining walls and multi-level systems, patios can now tackle almost any front or backyard situation. Given the way patios are built, with a solid crushed stone base below a layer of pavers, they are the best solution for any type of weight-bearing applications; like driveways or even hot tubs.

Q. How long do decks and patios last?

A. Traditionally, the lifespan of a wood structure is about seven-eight years if it is not cared for. This average is getting longer with more options coming into the market like composites and all-weather stains. Even pressure treated wood is seeing new technology which uses smaller molecules in the stain to get the rich brown color deeper into the wood; preserving it longer. As mentioned previously, a well-built patio can exceed 25 years with no maintenance.

Q. What are some advantages when it comes to design elements of patios versus decks?

A. Just like any indoor space, decks can be customized to your wants and needs. Multiple levels, shady overhead structures, and spa-like amenities are all within the realm of deck design possibility—with a little planning.

Visually, patios offer one design element that makes them very desirable for homeowners. Patios can be built flush to the ground. If you have basement windows, you get to keep whatever natural light is available. Also, because you are lower to the ground, you are able to create more privacy by better using existing fences, privacy panels, and even trees.


At the end of the day, both decks and patios have fantastic merits. When faced with making a choice, homeowners need to understand that creating useable space outdoors is by far one of the smartest renovating decisions they can make. Whichever option you decide on, feel confident that investing in the outdoors is not only good for your family, it’s good for your largest investment- your home.

If you are ready to add more depth and detail to your landscape design, we at State of the Art Landscape are ready to start sharing even more immersive experiences with you! Contact us today for a no-cost consultation.

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