Deck vs patio

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swimmer_spe

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We enclosed our back yard. It is about 22x30. Currently, we have a 8x8 foot deck raised about 4 feet off grade that goes up to the wall of the house to our patio door. Below the patio door is a window for the basement that is about the same width as the patio door.

We have several ideas. All likely won't be done till spring.
1) knock down the existing deck. Make a deck about 16 feet wide, and about 12-16 feet deep. It would be at the same height as the current deck. (permit required)
2) Leave the current deck. Make an L deck around the existing deck, making sure that there is a spot for a 10x10 gazebo. The new deck would be less than 2 feet from grade (No permit required)
3) Steps down to a patio made of pavers of some sort. The patio would be as large as the #1 deck. (No permit required)

The problem is, we have a small area and anything we do will take away from our dog's area to run. She is almost a year old, 30lb husky mix.

So, what would you do?
 

kok328

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For option #2, as long as the L deck is not attached to the first deck a permit should not be required but, the 24" from grade maybe different for you locality.
In regards to your space issue and pet, that's purely up to you.
 

Sparky617

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If you're close to the ground I prefer patios to decks. It is easier to incorporate them into the landscape than a deck. A well constructed patio will not need much if any maintenance for a very long time. Pavers don't require permits here, poured concrete does. I like the look of stamped concrete patios. A professional can do some amazing things with concrete, stamps, and concrete stains.
 
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