Designing and constructing an outdoor deck requires a great deal of thought and decision-making. And who does not wish for a lovely and aesthetic backyard deck to spend their Sunday afternoons right! But what if all your hard work of building a pretty place for your peace of mind went to waste? Well, you would not want that and neither would we! So, let us discuss the legal and other formalities that you need to look into before building a backyard deck.
To begin, you’ll need to figure out what size deck you want, set a budget, choose materials, and decide whether you wish to construct it yourself or hire an expert.
The true secret to a successful project is in the planning and preparation that goes into it. Good planning and preparation help construction move quicker and more straightforward, save money, and guarantee excellent outcomes. But wait, did you know before building a deck, you need a permit? Yes, you heard it right! Let us know more about it.
Why do you need a permit?
Building a deck is not another DIY project, you require a special license or permit to pull it off. While most of the decks do not need a permit, it is essential to know the legal formalities well before starting the project. You can contact a Long Island real estate attorney for further help. A permit will make sure that you build a sound deck with the appropriate structure. Further, it will also ensure that no person is harmed and no case of personal injury arises on your home ground.
What are the exemptions for the permit?
There are certain things you need to keep in mind to ensure that the backyard deck matches with the instructions and rules of building a deck. Below are some of them:
- Should be an area of less than 200 square feet
- Is not directly connected to the house
- Is not connected to the exit door of the house
- Should be below 30-inches above grade
For further help, it is advised to hire legal help such as a Long Island real estate attorney.
What happens if you fail to follow the legal rules?
In case you are wondering that a permit is not a serious issue, the following are the fines you need to face in case you fail to follow the exemptions.
While each city has their own set rules and it may vary as per the area you live, here are a few repercussions you might have to face:
- Have to pay a hefty fine
- Tearing down of the deck
- No allowance of selling the home until the issue is resolved
Now, that looks like a lot and you might want to consider twice before violating any law.
Things to consider while building a backyard deck
Apart from the legal exemptions, you must also look into the other things that you need to follow while building a backyard deck, listed as below:
Get a Plan in Hand
A materials list is often included in plans. This will save you time by allowing you to collect everything you need at once, rather than making several visits to the hardware store for “just one more” bolt or 2×6.
Pressure Treated Wood
This is the most popular and affordable decking material. Pressure-treated wood is usually made of Southern yellow pine and is chemically treated to help prevent rot and termites. Unfortunately, most pressure-treated wood splinters and has a 15-year life expectancy.
Redwood and Cedar
Redwood and cedar, like tropical hardwoods, have inherent rot and insect defences. Unlike tropical hardwoods, the wood is fragile and may be damaged and worn over time with regular usage. Redwood and cedar typically have a 20-year lifespan. The boards are light and stiff at the same time.
Understand the Codes
Before you begin, verify your local building regulations to ensure that your deck is safe. For example, most building codes require a railing at least 36 inches high, with balusters spaced no more than 4 inches between, on a deck with a walking area 30 inches or more above grade.
Looks like you are now prepared to build the perfect backyard deck to enjoy your afternoons!
The last step is to relax and have fun! Once you have the permit and all things are in place, you can host parties or spend quality time with your family members on the backyard deck. In case any problem arises in the future, you know your lawyer will have your back. For most cases in the US, a Long Island real estate attorney proves to be extremely helpful and has the highest success rate. He or she will not only help you get the permit but also guide you while preparing the structure of the deck.