Warmer weather means it’s time to head out to the deck to enjoy sunny afternoons and do some grilling on summer evenings. You’ll probably find yourself even using your deck well into the fall, or even throughout the year depending on the climate where you live. Whether you have a huge deck or a tiny one, do what you can to make the most of it and create a space where you, your family and your friends will be able to enjoy some time outdoors this year.
Make it Squeaky Clean: Your deck is probably looking a little bit dirty after the long winter, so give it a good spring cleaning in preparation for all the time you’ll be spending out there. If you have a composite deck, a power washer can get off any grime, and you can use a stiff-bristled brush and all-purpose deck cleaner for the detail work. If you have a wood deck, you should wash it gently to avoid damaging the wood and stain. You’ll need to strip and stain your deck every few years, so if it’s lost its shine, consider completing that project this season.
Choose Comfortable Seating: If you don’t have any seating on your deck, now’s the time to get some because standing out there all the time isn’t very comfortable. Choose a set that fits your space well and provides surfaces that meet your needs. If you want to serve meals outdoors, you’ll need a dining table of some kind, whereas end tables are sufficient for just setting down drinks. Bring new life to old patio furniture by power washing the frames and laundering the cushions to bring back their original luster. If you don’t have cushions, a few weather-resistant pillows can make a big difference.
Add Attractive Plants: Especially if you have just a deck and not much of a yard, some greenery and flowers can go a long way in making it a prettier place to spend time. Choose some annual plants for large pots or planters around the perimeter of your deck so they’ll come back year after year. In addition, put together some hanging pots with annual flowers or herbs to hang over the railings or dangle from your overhang, if you have one.
Install a Hot Tub: If you have a large deck, the best thing you can do to literally make it the hottest gathering place around is to add a hot tub. This is the perfect place to relax on your own after a long day or to spend some time chatting with good friends while you’re entertaining. Built-in hot tubs look especially inviting because they fit right in with the overall look of your deck. If your deck is elevated, consider installing your spa on a lower level of a cascading multi-level deck to make it easier to get in and avoid having it visually take over the space.
Your deck is really an extension of your home, so don’t ignore it as you spruce up your home for the entertaining season. Pick your projects now and create a timeline for completing them before the summer is over. Once your deck’s ready to go, consider throwing a party so your favorite people can come enjoy your outdoor space with you!
Holly is an Indianapolis native who works with her father in the real estate industry. In her spare time, she enjoys blogging on behalf of Sears and other brands she uses.