Lisa Schade

Broker, BS, CDPE, SFR

Wood or Composite: Which Deck Material Is Right for You?

 


(BPT) - Adding a deck or replacing an old one is a popular project in warmer months – one that provides outdoor entertaining space and enhances home value. If you’re considering a deck project this season, will you choose to build with wood or composite?

Decks built from either material have a high return on investment at the time of resale. Both can provide your family with a great space in which to enjoy warm weather. Before you decide which material is right for your deck, learn the truth behind these common myths.

Myth: Wood is “greener” than composite decking.

Truth: In many ways, composite decking is more eco-friendly than wood. When you consider the life cycle of both products, composite products emerge as materials with minimal environmental impact. Your final, finished deck requires no harsh chemical treatments to make it resist rot and stain, and it will last for decades. That durability means less energy consumption, fewer resources needed to replace it and less discarded material in landfills.

Myth: Composite decking is too expensive.

Truth: While the initial outlay for materials may be the same as exotic woods or more than pressure treated wood, the durability, longevity and low-maintenance requirements of composite mean it will actually cost less over its lifetime than wood. Composite eliminates the cost of re-staining a deck every year, and its rot-resistant qualities greatly curtail repair costs.

Myth: Wood is a better material for do-it-yourself decks.

Truth: If your DIY skills are up to working with wood, you can definitely build your own deck using composite materials. In fact, composite products are easier to work with than wood in many ways. Unlike wood, composite planks won’t splinter or fracture. Finally, when your deck is done, you can start enjoying it right away, without the need to stain or seal the deck before you can use it.

Myth: Composite fades, looks fake and does not have the same beauty as wood.

Truth: Wood is undeniably beautiful, but many composite decking options now mimic the natural grain and beauty of wood. Whether your taste runs to classic or contemporary, you’ll find composite selections that deliver the look of traditional wood grains and even exotic hardwoods. Advances in composite technology have yielded products that so closely resemble wood, you may not be able to tell the difference until you step on one barefoot – you’ll find the composite smooth and splinter-free! 

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2014. All rights reserved.

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