All About Decks & Patios
By John Galbraith
Decks and patios can be built by homeowners, but any deck more than four feet above ground level should be built by a certified contractor. Understand the difference between decks and patios with advice from a general contractor in this helpful video on home improvements.View Transcript
Hello, my name is John Galbraith, and in this clip we're going to be talking about decks and patios. Typically, a deck is up off the ground and made of wood, usually redwood. Whereas, a patio can be poured concrete or stamped concrete. With a deck, if it's any higher than four feet off the ground, you need a building permit and it should be built by a licensed contractor. The reason is, is four feet off the ground is a safety issue, so building and safety should be involved. For instance, the railing, the uprights of the railing should not be more than four inches apart, and the reason why they came up with that measurement is toddlers can actually get their heads caught between the uprights of the railing. Patios, you don't need a permit for because they're on the ground and it's not a safety issue, but it is advised to have a professional do it because once the concrete is hard, it's very difficult to make any corrections if necessary; especially one correction would be, for instance, if the patio stokes towards the house, this would be causing a drainage problem, and you might have a little bit of flooding. It should be sloping, a 1 percent slope away from the house. This has been John Galbraith, and we've been talking about patios and decks.
About the Expert
John Galbraith is a general contracter with over 30 years of experience.
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