Deteriorating bedroom deck

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lydiajones94

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Hi all,

The below picture shows a deteriorating bedroom deck. It is exposed to the elements. The house was build circa 1930, but no info is known about the deck specifically. For obvious reasons, we never stand on the deck.

We will list the house for sale in a year or two, however, we may have to rent the place out instead, depending on the market. It is not clear if the house will be considered unsafe because of the condition of the deck.

I would need advice on how to inspect it. I suppose I could check for rot. I cannot tell how the deck is anchored to the brick veneer. Your thoughts are welcome.

I am also considering sawing it off. Is that feasible? If so, with what type of equipment? I suppose I could use a chainsaw, but this job would be too big for a sawzall. Falling debris could cause problems.The french doors would then have to be "converted" into a window by a contractor.

I very much appreciate your input on any aspect of this project.

Many thanks in advance

Lydia

IMG_2718.jpg
 

bud16415

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Well it’s a charming detail to the house if it was repaired IMO. Will it be considered a problem with making the house a rental? I would say Yes? Would the cost to rebuild be worth it in selling the house? Most likely not. But you have to investigate to see how extensive the repairs will be before you know. Assuming it needs to be a tear off and build new I would say you won’t add enough value in that case to pay to do it. You didn’t mention your location or what the view is when you go out on it. That could play a big part in what you might want to do. The simple solution for a rental is screw some plywood over it from the inside and paint it the color of the room and call it a day. When you go to sell it the buyer has to add in or subtract from their offer based on what they want to do with it. If I did block it off I would repair the railings and paint it nice and advertise it as a decorative feature only and if the buyer wanted to convert it back that’s an issue they would have to take on themselves. Another option would be install a window for light only that could be ordered to fit the door opening. That could be a fairly easy DIY job. It does need cleaned up no matter what as its looking worn and will take away from the asking price.
 
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havasu

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That was once a beautiful piece of architecture. You remove it and it will be gone forever. That little balcony has the potential to be the reason this house will sell in the future, so please find a way to restore it to its original beauty.
 

beachguy005

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Both comments are worth considering, but for me, I'd take the best of both and just make some modifications. I would get rid of the deck aspect of it but keep, or rebuild, the posts, rails and balusters. Leave the doors but have them open inward.
So you'd still have the architecture but no deck to step out on.
 

nealtw

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It looks original to the houise when built. Working from a ladder I wood remove some deck board and inspect the structure inside. I would expect to find a timber at each side that is cantilevered in the floor and if they are in good shape it is worth saving. If they are not in good shape dismantle peice by peice, no one gets hurt.
 

Snoonyb

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Hi all,

The below picture shows a deteriorating bedroom deck. It is exposed to the elements. The house was build circa 1930, but no info is known about the deck specifically. For obvious reasons, we never stand on the deck.

We will list the house for sale in a year or two, however, we may have to rent the place out instead, depending on the market. It is not clear if the house will be considered unsafe because of the condition of the deck.

I would need advice on how to inspect it. I suppose I could check for rot. I cannot tell how the deck is anchored to the brick veneer. Your thoughts are welcome.

I am also considering sawing it off. Is that feasible? If so, with what type of equipment? I suppose I could use a chainsaw, but this job would be too big for a sawzall. Falling debris could cause problems.The french doors would then have to be "converted" into a window by a contractor.

I very much appreciate your input on any aspect of this project.

Many thanks in advance

Lydia
I'd like to see a picture of the bottom, from directly underneath, as well as a picture of the deck surface.
 

slownsteady

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Worth keeping IMO, if possible. Is it the only balcony on the house? I'd like to see a wider picture, if you have one.
 

CallMeVilla

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Architectural enhancements are a plus for resale. This balcony can be refurbished for a reasonable price ... and you will recover the cost in the future. The alternative is to strip the building of its character. Why do I say this? I did a balcony removal project like yours. The result was a vanilla fascia and I honestly did not like the outcome --- even though that is what the client wanted. Do the right thing and preserve the look!
 

bud16415

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Villa

No one will agree with you more than me on this issue. Too many buildings are being stripped down of their historic detail. But the bottom line is practicality and this house we don’t know could be in a beautiful country setting and overlooking a majestic expanse of rolling hills with a beautiful view of the sunrise, or it could be in a city and over the years a mall popped up next door and the view could be the loading docks of a Walmart. The neglect it shows also shows me the owner never cared enough about the feature all the years they lived there to allow it to be functional. I know how budgets work and a project like this is one you always plan on doing but just never get to it as the money goes other directions. If the repair is cost justified is totally as to what type of buyers will be looking at the house. If it’s in an upscale neighborhood for sure such features will play a part in the selling price. As it is all buyers will see it as a negative. Knowing more about the structure and also about the general appeal of such a feature in the location the house is at makes a huge difference from the cost perspective.

The town I live in was in its hay day in the 1900 to 1950 and for a tiny town located exactly half way between NYC and Chicago on the rails it had 22 hotels with a half dozen grand hotels. It was a Victorian charming town. Now only one of the hotels is still going and that is more of a nostalgic thing and the beautiful Victorian homes are mostly sided in plastic siding. It’s a shame but it was what people did and could afford to do. Here and there people are bring a few back to life but most cant afford to do such even if they wanted to.
 

slownsteady

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...and the beautiful Victorian homes are mostly sided in plastic siding.
Funny you should mention this. More and more often these days, I see houses that look like Lil Tykes playhouses. They are just so plastic looking that they don't look real. Maybe these new materials will last for decades, and maybe I will get used to looking at them, but right now, they just look cheapened to me.
 

nealtw

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Funny you should mention this. More and more often these days, I see houses that look like Lil Tykes playhouses. They are just so plastic looking that they don't look real. Maybe these new materials will last for decades, and maybe I will get used to looking at them, but right now, they just look cheapened to me.
Well if done right, those old houses are at least covered and protected for someone in the future to bring them back.

Up here we are see more and more the use of wood corners and wood window treatment that hides the jay trim and from the road you would not no it was vinyl siding.
 

bud16415

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Funny you should mention this. More and more often these days, I see houses that look like Lil Tykes playhouses. They are just so plastic looking that they don't look real. Maybe these new materials will last for decades, and maybe I will get used to looking at them, but right now, they just look cheapened to me.
They are exactly that and the stuff will last forever. A neighbor of mine had a little 20’ deep gorge next to his garage and for years he used it like an unofficial land fill shoving anything in there that would fill it up and later capped it with dirt. He had an issue with drainage and had to dig it up. And almost everything in there after 30 years was going back to nature to some extent except the plastic siding it came up as good as it went down shiny and new looking. I don’t think a million years below ground is going to hurt that stuff. I am getting used to it more and more but it sure is nice looking at a freshly painted wood house or a brick house. My pet peeve is when they do a chimney in plastic siding.
 

slownsteady

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I can't blame him for trying, but your neighbor should have known better than to bury that plastic stuff. I don't know if there are facilities for recycling vinyl building material, but there is a lot of that stuff out there now. One day some govt official will open his eyes and be facing a mountain of stuff. Of course he will declare a crisis.
 

kmueller

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Both comments are worth considering, but for me, I'd take the best of both and just make some modifications. I would get rid of the deck aspect of it but keep, or rebuild, the posts, rails and balusters. Leave the doors but have them open inward.
So you'd still have the architecture but no deck to step out on.
That's a great idea. It could end up being a hefty investment if you rebuilt the whole deck. If you refinished/rebuilt the posts/rails, it would be a much smaller investment but would still retain the look. I think that would be your best best aesthetically and in keeping your budget down.
 

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