Is a Patio or a Deck Better for My Outdoor Space?

Wooden Backyard Deck with Table and Chairs Looking Out on Green Landscape

Patios and decks are two excellent options for enhancing your backyard. While they both serve similar purposes, they do have some key differences. A patio is a paved area in your yard that sits directly on the ground, usually made of concrete, brick, stone, or similar materials. Patios can be attached or detached from the home. Typically, a deck is a raised porch or platform structure without a roof that is attached to your home. Decks are most often made of wood or some type of composite wood and plastic material.

Depending on your property, landscaping, and how you plan to use your outdoor space, one of these features may be better for your yard than the other. To help you decide, let’s take a look at how patios and decks compare in a few major areas.

Patio vs. Deck Cost

The cost of a patio or a deck will vary based on the materials, size, and location. Generally, however, a patio is cheaper to build and install than a deck. The materials for a patio are less expensive and, since it’s not elevated, installation typically requires less labor than a deck.

Something to keep in mind though is that decks to have a higher return on investment at approximately 75%. So, if resale value is a factor in your decision, the larger upfront expense of a deck may be worth it.

Patio vs. Deck Maintenance

Maintenance is another area in which patios come out on top. Because it’s made with wood, a deck will have to be power washed, stained or repainted, and sealed every couple of years. Comparatively, the materials used for patios are lower-maintenance and more durable. Unless a patio is heavily stained over time, it won’t usually need much more than a quick sweeping or the occasional hose down.

Custom Patio & Deck Design in VirginiaPatio vs. Deck Lifestyle

A patio and a deck are each conducive to using your outdoor space in different ways. If you’re looking for more privacy, a patio will be your better option, since it’s lower to the ground. A deck, on the other hand, will offer you a better view of your yard and surrounding area.

When you’re designing a patio though, you have more flexibility in deciding how it looks and what type of landscaping is around you, which can also provide a nice view. Then again, a deck can be more easily customized to your preferred color or to match your house. It really just depends on what you’re looking for out of your new backyard feature.

Patio vs. Deck Restrictions

Depending on your space and how you plan to use it, either a deck or a patio could have more limitations for you. One consideration is the slope of your land. Since they’re elevated, decks can be built on uneven or even terrain. But since patios are build directly on the ground, they require flat land.

Raised decks also have weight limitations to consider. While a quality deck will provide solid support for you, guests, and your furniture, other features may be better suited to a patio. A hot tub or an outdoor kitchen, for example, may be too much for an elevated deck to handle.

Patio vs. Deck Lifespan

If well-maintained, decks and patios can both serve you well for several decades. Typically though, a patio will have a longer lifespan, at least compared to a natural wood deck. This is because wood is more susceptible to weather damage over time. A composite wood deck may last just as long as a patio if taken care of well enough, but the long life of a patio is more reliable and requires less upkeep to bring to fruition.

Still not sure if your yard would be better off with a patio or a deck? VistaPro Landscaping & Design can help you decide!

As experts in building and installing both custom patios and custom decks, we’re uniquely qualified to help you determine which one would be the best fit for your needs. Once you make your choice, our team will set to work designing, building, and installing the patio or deck of your dreams.

Contact us today to get started with your free consultation!