With Archadeck of Columbus’ staged building program you can be a winner too!

As the time ticks away to enter our Archadeck Dream Backyard Makeover contest, we urge you to dream big. Our staged building program can also deliver the backyard of your dreams over time and according to your budget making you a winner no matter what the contest results say.

Dream backyard makeover by ArchadeckThe end of March is just a short time away and our Archadeck 2013 Dream Backyard Makeover contest is still going strong. Two more finalists have yet to be chosen for March so now is the time to enter. Unfortunately there will be a lot of people who enter the contest that will not win, but our advice is to dream big and keep those entries rolling in! When you visualize your dream backyard, think about all the use and functionality of the spaces you want before you submit your entry. For example you may want to start with the primary structure such as a deck or porch and allow your other areas to feed off this to further function and enjoyment of your dream space.

With our staged building program everyone is a winner

Many of our customers design their outdoor spaces using staged building.  Staged (or phased) building enables you to plan your dream backyard over time. With staged building we can develop a plan that encompasses an entire outdoor space to be built in stages as your budget and lifestyle allows. We assist in planning your perfect outdoor oasis and ensuring all the structural footwork is in place to facilitate future additions. Archadeck of Columbus met with a homeowner just last week that wanted to build multiple structures over time. We prepared a grand plan showcasing the project in its entirety. We then priced out different segments as a starting point to his dream backyard. Archadeck of Columbus can also work with your pool company, lighting company and your landscaper on the structural components we need to proceed with your grand backyard design. When the time comes and you want to explore what a staged building project might cost you can contact us. Our primary goal during our initial consultation is to understand your needs, wants, budget and priorities to come up with a plan for you.

Columbus OH Timbertech deck in Sandridge
This outdoor space incorporates many levels of function and beauty in it’s design. A good example of a dream backyard.

Set the stage, dream the dream

Being in the business of outdoor living, my wife Carol and I have mapped out our dream backyard. It will include a screened porch to deliver safety from inclement weather and insects. We would incorporate an adjacent deck flowing from the screened porch. Our ultimate outdoor dream includes a rustic inspired outdoor fireplace with a multi-level patio used in conjunction with the deck. We would use the deck or patio to house tables and chairs for dining and designate the lower level patio for relaxing and conversation. We even have a vision of that lower level including an exterior fire pit or custom water feature. Even though we haven’t built our outdoor oasis yet we would consider the orientation of the sun to our home. For example, our home faces south therefore we would want a roofed structure to provide shade.

Patio with sailor course edging adjacent to Deck Columbus Ohio
This patio and deck combination matches the exterior of this home beautifully and also includes a sailor course border for added contrast.

A dream is as personal as the one who dreams it. With that being said we hope our dream backyard inspires you to dream as big as we do. Our dream backyard space includes a porch,  however  if a porch is not your cup of tea then you may consider an open outdoor structure instead. With a myriad of hardscape textures and colors available it is easy to coordinate your decking to the pavers. Another viable option when planning your dream backyard is to create accents through the decking and pavers, and even matching the colors you use in these areas to the trim on your home. The possibilities are endless…

To learn more about making your outdoor dreams a reality through our stages building program contact Archadeck of Columbus. We can create a custom master multi-year plan that will enable you to get a new backyard each year until your goal is reached. Call for a free consultation today(740) 879 – 3730
westcolumbus@archadeck.net

Archadeck of Columbus has seen a huge amount of interest from the Archadeck 2013 Dream Backyard Makeover contest. Just to clarify the contest specifications it is important to follow the instructions when entering. Entries must include one picture of your existing backyard and a brief description of what your dream backyard would be by utilizing decking, pavers and outdoor lighting. You can enter the 2013 Dream Backyard Makeover contest here

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

Please visit our decks photo gallery and our patio and hardscape photo gallery located on our website for more dreamy backyard ideas.

Important considerations when deciding where to place your new Columbus screened porch

As part two of our design series, Archadeck of Columbus discusses the ideal place on your house to attach your screened porch.

Columbus OH Screen porch with flat ceiling
Placing your screened porch in the right spot is crucial to its function and aesthetics.

I know you have heard the phrase “location, location, location” in the world of real estate. Location is just as important in the addition of adding your new screened porch to your home and yard. When considering the addition of any outdoor structure to your home there are several factors to take into consideration. In essence about 95% of the screen porches we build are located on the back of the home; the remaining 5% are built as freestanding or detached structures or in locations other than the rear of the home.

Columbus OH Screen porch with pine tongue and groove detail
Notice the bay window through the window of this lovely screen porch, and the location of the door that enters into the home. All were important factors in determining where to place this porch.

Where, oh where on my house should my new screened porch be?

The most important consideration in deciding the best location for your screen porch is to address the spatial and functional needs that are important in regards to your lifestyle. If you are going to use your space for dining, for instance, you may choose to create an area within close proximity to your interior (or in some cases) your outdoor kitchen. Functionality is important in choosing placement that is ideal for your individual needs, but structural influences will usually dictate the most realistic area your screened porch should be.

A good exercise is to go into your backyard with a tape measure and think about where you want your boundaries to be and where you want to begin the screened porch. We recommend centering your back door in the space as a good place to start to get a good idea of  your desired starting and stopping points.

Structural influences such as doors and bump out swill dictate where your screened porch should begin and end. Utilities can also play a role in placement of your screened porch. Typically, when houses are built utilities like A/C units, water spigots, gas meters and vents are placed in the most inconvenient places in terms of adding on. In many cases we can work around the utilities or we can help to get them relocated.

Columbus OH Screen porch with skylights
By adding skylights to your screen porch you add an open, airy feel to the space and also let much-needed light into interior rooms in close proximity.

A consultation with a qualified and reputable builder is key when considering a screened porch addition because many times the design of your house and roof will dictate how and where the screened porch will tie into your home. If roof lines are an issue, a sidewall connection is the answer. A licensed professional will also consider the details that are often overlooked when considering the addition of a roofed structure such as loss of light within the home. Adding a screened porch can impact the amount of natural light that flows into your home. The roof for your new outdoor addition will likely affect the area within the home’s interior that is the closest in proximity to the new porch; this can many times be amended by the addition of skylights within your screen porch. We take all these factors into consideration when designing your new space because overlooking the smallest nuance can mean the difference in falling in love with your new outdoor space or leaving you with regret over the small things you should have considered before construction began.

If you are considering the addition of a combination outdoor structure that includes a screened porch and deck or patio combination then you need to consider additional factors such as harmony and flow and how each structure will function together. With combination structures the grade of your lot is also an important consideration. If you have a relatively flat area then consider adding a patio or deck. Patios are less expensive to build on a flat grade than a deck. If you have a steeper grade then the opposite is the case because a patio would require more aggregate and retaining walls.

Columbus Timbertech XLM Sandridge Colored Deck with Screen Porch and Patio
This outdoor living combination includes a screened porch, twin decks and a stunning hardscape patio. Notice how the structures, and the existing home harmonize as one.

No matter where you decide as the most advantageous location for your new screened porch it will likely become your favorite room in the house, and the space you gravitate to during the outdoor living season. With fall in the air now is the best time to begin your screened porch addition. You may even get to enjoy some of the colors of autumn from your new screened porch before the arrival of winter.

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

Contact Archadeck of Columbus to help you decide on the perfect porch, or outdoor living combination as well as the perfect way to tie it all together. Call for a free consultation: ( 740) 879 – 3730 Email:westcolumbus@archadeck.net

You can get more ideas for the perfect placement of your screened porch by visiting our screened porch gallery located on our website.

There’s more than meets the eye in stairs for your Columbus deck or porch

Archadeck of Columbus explores the importance of stairs in an outdoor structure design. There is more intensive purposes stairs serve than just making a grand entrance, or exit.

TimberTech deck in Hillard, OH
This wide set of stairs allows for easy traffic flow between the deck and patio. The stairs also include riser lights for visibility in the evening.

Stairs are one of the most important elements of any outdoor structure design and are often taken for granted. There are many code regulations that dictate how deck stairs must be constructed. These code regulations are put in place for safety purposes and are taken very seriously with reputable contractors and building inspectors. A stairway is not the place you want to fail because the results could be disastrous. With safety in mind, the minimum requirement for stairs is 3′ wide, we often build our stairs 4′ wide which exceeds the standard but allows for the opportunity of two people on the stairs at the same time comfortably and safely. At first glance it seems that stairs are simple, but when it comes to stairs there is definitely more than meets the eye.

Cedar deck and patio in Columbus, OH
These iron railings are powder coated to reduce rust and maintenance and allow more visibility from inside the home and while utilizing the living space.The lower stairs tie into the beautiful hardscaping while the upper stairs tie into the deck.

Stair construction in itself is labor intensive because a lot of framing components go into this small area.  The carpentry involved in building stairs is something that needs to be done by a good carpenter that knows how to cover all the angles and framework in building a good quality stair. Stairs are generally the first component on a deck to fail because they are often not built with longevity in mind. Some contractors will frame their stairs with nails that will deteriorate more rapidly than those built with screws. The reason for the failure of stairs built with nails is the continuous force put on the framing as you walk down the stairs. Over time this force will cause separation and deterioration. We build our stairs using the Archadeck methodology which means we use all the proper hardware, framing angles and screws in a stair construction to add to the life of the stairs. In addition to the framing hardware we also either put columns or footers at the base of the stairs to keep them from moving and we never rest the framing on the ground. We also back all of our structural constructions with a five-year warranty.TimberTech deck in Westerville, OH

Along with the importance of the construction of the stair, stair direction and stair style can make or break the fluidity of your outdoor design. The first consideration to think about is the flow of your outdoor living space to determine where the ideal placement of the stairs should be and how many sets you may need. This is especially important in back yards with play areas or if you desire additional access to your side yard as well as directly into the rear yard. In this scenario we sometimes recommend multiple sets of stairs.

Taking it all in stride

Each outdoor structure represents a different set of components when it comes to stairs. For example some structures will require railings and some won’t. Any set of stairs that has three or more sets of treads requires a railing going down for safety reasons. With decks requiring railings, we usually build off the back of the house near the location of the homeowner’s outdoor dining area because people often want stairs in the center of this area as to not impede the view with rail while dining . The most important aspect to remember about proper stair placement is to place them in areas so they don’t negatively affect the view or the traffic flow to where the stairs are leading to.

2nd story deck in Delaware County, OH
Notice the elongated Steps featuring 3 Board Treads.To get down to the lower level patio, a direction change in the stairs was necessary. The beautiful railings on both the deck and the steps make both elements very attractive.

Landings are another element that is carefully dictated by the height and shape of your outdoor structure. When landings are used on elevated decks we always ask the homeowner where they want the stairs to end. Landings allow us to make directional changes and meet code requirements. For example, porches are required to have have a landing right outside the door.  Porch stairs also work best when built close to the house as to not congest the traffic flow through the porch.

Circular staircase in Arlington, OH
Stairs don’t always need to be square. This circular staircase descends from a second story porch down to an area where we will be replacing the deck in another stage of this project. Ask us about staged building for your outdoor living space.

Many homeowners want wrap-around stairs or bay stairs. Though these are costly, they provide a nice wide opening which can also be used for additional seating. On very elevated decks spiral staircases often fit the bill. Spiral staircases are typically made from powder coated aluminum and take up considerably less space than traditional stairs. When talking about spiral staircases you cannot forget to mention their unique shape, aesthetic appeal and “cool” factor!

Stair direction is another fact to consider. This is why we often build stairs that lead directly into your key backyard destination or focal point of the entire backyard. A good example of this is a deck that has access directly to a patio below or an elevated deck or porch that spills directly into the surround of your pool or spa.

Last but certainly not least, we have to mention stair lighting. Lighting within stair risers and small dome lights on your rail posts add a new layer to your outdoor experience. Though deck lighting is not required by code, is does make evening travel on the stairs easier and safer.

Evergrain deck with tiered stairs in Columbus, OH
The mirrored stairways make the lower portion of the deck easily accessible. Deck lights in all areas allow the owners to use their outdoor living space at all hours of the day and night.

Whether you are considering a deck addition, or a multi-structure backyard makeover, Archadeck of Columbus will provide you with a design that harmonizes with your home and your backyard. We can help you ensure your outdoor oasis flows effortlessly from one level of enjoyment to the next.
Call for a free consultation:
(740) 879 – 3730
Email:westcolumbus@archadeck.net

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

See more stairs that are designed for function and flavor by visiting our steps and stairs gallery located on our website.

This stunning outdoor combination in Dublin, OH proves that an area doesn’t have to be large to be functional

An eye catching design, quality materials and functional space make up this TimberTech deck and paver patio combination structure in Dublin, OH that we recently unveiled.

Archadeck of Columbus TimberTech deck Dublin
Our recent project in Dublin, Ohio is full of functional space that is easy on the eyes.

This stunning hardscape patio and TimberTech deck combination in Dublin, Ohio is proof that a functional addition to your outdoor living doesn’t have to be huge nor does it need to cost a fortune. Many times lot constrictions, setbacks and a lack of usable space create a scenario where an expansive space isn’t possible. It is possible however to create a space that is simple, effective and pretty in spite of limitations. Take a look at this finished outdoor project.

These homeowners wanted a space that would allow for some relief from the sun for their child, as well as an area where they could enjoy their beautiful backyard as a family. We came up with a combination structure design that provides both. The family’s new backyard space now consists of a low maintenance composite deck and paver patio, with a hardscape path that ties the two structures together an provides a way to and from the outdoor area from the side of the home.

paver path walkway Dublin OH by Archadeck
Notice how the soldier course border gives the pathway a unified, finished look.

The new deck was built using TimberTech XLM in Walnut Grove. We installed the boards using a unique pattern and finished the design with a picture frame border that spans the entire outside perimeter of the deck. It adds visual interest when we are able to work in a unique pattern or design into a deck, a step beyond your normal everyday deck. The railings were done in white vinyl to compliment the windows of the home and they also help bring the rich Walnut Grove color of the deck into the spotlight. We also built a wide-angle step box which leads down to the paver patio below.

On the paver patio we used Unilock Camelot pavers in Coffee Creek, this color palette leads down to the walkway and around to the driveway as well. We accented the Camelot pavers with a Holland Stone soldier course edge to add contrast. The entire area is conducive to good traffic flow which will make both areas more functional for everyday enjoyment. The homeowners are elated with the finished project and are looking forward to enjoying their new outdoor area for many years to come.

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

Contact Archadeck of Columbus to learn more about how we can make your backyard a prime destination for relaxation, fun and family times, even with a limited budget or limited space.
Call for a free consultation: (740) 879 – 3730
Email: westcolumbus@archadeck.net

See more backyard combination ideas by visiting our composite and vinyl deck gallery  and our patio and hardscape gallery located on our website.

Our combination structure projects run as smooth as silk, down to last board and bloom

Archadeck of Columbus talks about our combination outdoor living design and our theory on how we ensure each project is done right, even down to the landscaping.

Open porch with outdoor fireplace
This outdoor space combines an open porch with an outdoor fireplace, it also houses an indoor kitchen and spa at the other end of the porch.

Designing the perfect outdoor space for you and staying on top of outdoor living and design trends is our business. We are seeing an increase in the number of combination projects Columbus area homeowners are seeking such as deck/patio combination or a screen porch/deck/patio combination. Clients who build combination projects want to create an outdoor space that fits all their needs, and allows the effortless flow from one structure into another to offer maximum enjoyment in their backyards.

In good building management of combination structures, the projects need to be built in a certain order for everything to run smoothly. We schedule everything in order, in house, so there won’t be installers at the same place at the same time falling over each other. This also means that there are no big delays in finishing one facet of the design and starting another. This enables us to finish the job the way it needs to be done. No delays due to bad planning is an element our customers really appreciate and value because multi-living outdoor structures mean that their outdoor living area is not just one part, but many working together as one. This is part of what makes us a truly outdoor living company.

Open porch with spa and kitchen
This image shows the other end of this combination structure.

When building multi-component backyard living areas, many companies outsource the whole project or parts of the project which can cause delays, multiple crews working at one time, or other scheduling and project management nightmares. That simply isn’t the case when you are working with us. We do it all “in house”, right down to your landscaping. This ensures your entire project is staged accordingly and the finished project will leave you astounded and transform your entire back yard starting with the decking boards right down to the flower blooms.

Quality is our top priority when making your outdoor oasis come to life. When you have the project management, the quality materials, the expert installers and expert designs all coming from the same source the projects run more smoothly and the designs are better integrated. Our multi-part projects are built seamlessly as one continuous flow of work.

Columbus cedar pergola and hardscape duo
Columbus cedar pergola and hardscape duo
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

To learn more about our outdoor combination designs, including the landscaping that helps bring it all to life, contact Archadeck of Columbus today. Call for a free consultation: (740) 879 – 3730 westcolumbus@archadeck.net

See more multi-faceted outdoor combination structures by visiting our many photo galleries, located on our website. There are so many wonderful and functional combinations it will be hard for you to choose!

A design conversation with our own design expert sheds light on creating good overall space design for your outdoor living structure

Our own design and installation expert, Rob Mitchell, discusses the elements of creating a memorable outdoor structure, or combination of outdoor structures, in your backyard.

Patio, deck and fire pit combination in Dublin, OH
This patio, deck and fire pit combination in Dublin, OH shows the use of curves to achieve harmony, flow and beauty in the overall design.

Recently, our resident patio and hardscape expert shared some of his thoughts on the fundamentals of hardscape design.  Rob Mitchell is our patio and hardscape expert and is truly a craftsman.  He shared with me the basics that go into creating a magical outdoor space, and also the key elements that need that go into the recipe for aesthetic appeal, good function and convenience. In many instances our customers bring some of their own ideas to the table, Rob is able to take these ideas and translate them into the design in ways that are quite impressive. In design, every space is different, and should be treated as such.  We like to see something develop and enjoy working with homeowners through the entire process.

Archadeck_Columbus_paver_patio_architectural_Rendering
No stone is left unturned when we prepare your architectural rendering.

How arc and tangent play a role in good design

The initial thing we try to do with the design of each outdoor structure is to create a grand entrance into the structure, or a grand entrance exiting the structure. This goes back to the old cliché’ that ” first impressions mean everything”. This could not be more true, the first impression sets the tone and expectation for the design in its entirety. We usually achieve this through the staircase that leads you into the structure itself.  We use a great deal of arc and tangent design that incorporate the use of curved lines. Curved lines soften the back of your home, are more intriguing than straight lines, and offer more opportunities within the design to serve specific function. For instance, using curves and circles within the areas that you wish to designate for living and conversation areas versus dining areas. The decks from the past were squares and rectangles, using arc and tangent leaves more room for open creativity and lends the design to connect the curves with no flat spots so the design is seamless and continuous. Arc and tangent promote flow and harmony as you move from one structure to another, or from each area of designated function into another. Circles and curves are more relaxed and easier and more visually appealing to connect to.

The hot new trends are destined to become timeless classics

Design statements can also be made through the use of colors and textures.  Most of the time our customers allow us to pick the colors. In general, with patios and hardscapes, earth tones are very popular right now. We are seeing a trend towards the use of larger pavers with natural stone texture, similar to a rock texture on the top. One of the ways in which we like to add drama to  our hardscape designs is to change direction in which we lay the materials for our patios. Often times, we will lay the pavers soldier course around the patio and have a 45 degree angle. This spices the design up a bit. We also like to use seating walls with lighting and banding. The use of  retaining walls and planters blend especially well with a patio/deck combination structure because it adds height without creating a stark contrast. Thinking “outside the box” , by using arc and tangent when it comes to outdoor living designs offers more flow and harmony within the structure itself and makes it a joy to look at as well.

Columbus_paver_patio_plan
This paver patio design shows the way in which we use arc and tangent.

We are also building a large number of outdoor fire pits and fireplaces to partner with our deck and patio combinations. Letting Archadeck of Columbus design a custom feature such as this promotes continuity of the custom feel and we can pull accents from your home to make it a cohesive design. Rob said, ” if he won the lottery himself, he would build a deck/patio/outdoor fireplace combination in his own backyard.” This speaks volumes on the impact adding an outdoor fireplace or fire pit can make in your own backyard!

The only thing we would like to see people do more with is integrated patio lighting.  Good lighting creates an ambiance, not necessarily in areas that it would perform function, but to create more mood. Adding light to areas such as risers in stairs, beneath seating walls, or even as a banding in the border of a patio will create mood. Unilock pavers actually offer a glowing luminescent  paver to use in borders or as banding, it is not cheap, but the effect is well worth the cost.

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

If you are ready to design an outdoor space that fulfills your every want and need, contact Archadeck of Columbus to design your backyard masterpiece. (740) 879 – 3730 westcolumbus@archadeck.net

See more of our patio and hardscape designs and outdoor fireplace and fire pit designs by visiting our patio and hardscape gallery, and our outdoor fireplace and fire pit design gallery, both located on our website.

Double the enjoyment by adding a patio to your deck or porch

Archadeck of Columbus delivers the forecast in what is hot in outdoor living trends for this Spring. Deck and patio combinations, as well as porch and patio combinations seem to be at the top of the list.

Columbus_OH_large_paver_patio_with_screen_porch_and_deck
This photo shows how each of the structures,the custom deck, screened porch and patio by Archadeck of Columbus work together as one.

We are really excited about the outdoor living season this year. We recently took part in two fantastic home shows in the area and got tons of ideas on the outdoor living trends for this Spring. While at the show we had a great deal of interest in not only decks, but also adding a patio to your deck.  The trend we see is that Columbus area homeowners are requesting the addition of a patio to go with their new AND existing decks and porches. It stands to reason that even when it comes to outdoor living structures the hot new idea is to double the fun.

The great part about adding a hardscape, such as a patio, to your deck or porch is that it is the perfect add-on to give you those multiple outdoor living areas that you really want. A patio can be added with a new, or existing, deck or porch at anytime. Adding a patio to your deck is a great way to spice it up and put that spark back into your outdoor entertaining as well enhance the beauty in your backyard.

Wouldn’t it be great to have your deck serve as your outdoor cooking or gathering location and have a beautiful patio adjacent to use for dining and conversation?  Or even a deck that leads into a covered hardscape patio with a fully functional outdoor kitchen? The entertaining opportunities that open up to you when you think about a dual structure such as a deck and patio combination are endless. Having multiple living areas within your outdoor design can offer more room and expand the functionality of your design.  We can design a project for you that will turn your backyard until the ultimate backyard oasis.

Synthetic Deck with Hot Tub and Paver Patio

Archadeck of Columbus also offers “phased building”. This means we can plan upgrades or additions to your current project to accommodate for later additions or enhancements. For instance, if you really want a deck for this season, but foresee the future facilitating a patio and deck combination, we can make all the necessary adjustments in advance so when your budget allows you to add the patio a little later the structural necessities needed to make the transition run smoothly are already put into place.

Contact Archadeck of Columbus to learn more about our deck/patio and porch/patio combinations, and to learn more about our phased building program. We are now scheduling projects for the Spring season to have the backyard of your dreams in time for warmer weather, don’t delay. (740) 879 – 3730 westcolumbus@archadeck.net

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus