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Are you living in an older house and looking to bring your home into the 21st century? There’s no need to build a new house if you’re just looking for a new look. You can upgrade your older house with an exterior renovation to modernize your home. Here are the top 8 renovation ideas that will give you a modern look.

1. Put a Fresh Coat of Paint on Your Siding or Trim

A simple way to breathe new life into your home is a simple coat of paint on your siding. Even if your current paint is in good condition, simply updating an outdated color scheme is a fantastic way to modernize your home. You’re not limited to painting your siding, too. You could repaint your trim with a nice accent color to make your home pop.

Working with a professional painter will ensure that your home is painted properly and safely with the right equipment and materials. If you have the experience and tools to paint your house yourself, be sure to buy a quality exterior paint, as interior paints will not work.

2. Replace Your Old Shingles

Your roof is another place to look when deciding to modernize your home. The shingles on your roof last anywhere from 12 to 30 years, depending on the type. Your roof will get damaged over the decades and those weathered down shingles will fall out of style, too, making this renovation a win-win.

Roofing contractors in your area will have a variety of modern roofing materials to choose from. We at E&E contracting install asphalt shingles, cedar shakes, standing seam, or engineered slate.

Front exterior of house after installing brown ProVia stone veneer with a black roof, black window shutters, and white trim.

3. Add Stone Veneer

An excellent option to modernize your home’s siding, aside from fresh paint, is stone veneer. Stone veneer is a decorative stone siding not meant to bear weight but will replace your typical vinyl siding or stucco. This decorative stone can replace the whole side of your house or just a section, like your entrance, to give a nice accent.

There are two types of stone veneer to pick for your home, natural stone and engineered stone. Natural stone comes from a quarry, has natural color that doesn’t fade, and is extremely durable. They do come at a higher price, however. The inexpensive engineered stone is made from aggregate and cement, giving you a consistent, easy-to-maintain look. They come in a variety of colors to match your style.

4. Replace Windows and Shutters

Replacing your windows is an excellent choice to upgrade the look of your home and they should be replaced every 15-30 years, anyway. You can take this time to enlarge your windows, letting in more light and updating the look of your exterior. Another option is to update your windows’ crown molding to a more modern look.

Related to your windows, your shutters also strongly impact the look of your home. Most homes are built with generic, unattractive shutters which are fixed and non-functional. Replace them with modern, functional shutters and it’ll look like a whole new house! You can even try going with a bold color to really make your home stand out.

5. Upgrade your driveway or walkway

You might not think to look down, but your driveway and walkway really do impact the overall look of your home. You could look to simply expand your existing driveway to include another parking spot or basketball court. You could replace the generic asphalt or concrete with pavers, brickwork, or a stamped concrete to give your walkway or driveway a unique, modern look. You can also take this time to build walkways to new parts of your property, like your garden, pool, or detached garage.

Front entrance of house after ranch style house modernization with new light stone veneer, two entry way lights, a path leading to the covered entrance, and flower beds on either side of the path with mulch and shrubs.

6. Add Exterior Lighting

With all the work you do updating and upkeeping your home, you’ll want people to see it at all times of the day. Investing in some modern exterior lighting helps to upgrade the look of your home and make it visible at night. You’ll also be helping guests navigate your property at night. You can simply replace your outdated fixtures with new ones or add more lights to new areas, such as entryways, patios, garage doors, or lining your driveway and paths.

7. Replace Your Garage Door

Your garage door is another area that can easily become outdated over the decades, and should be replaced about every 30 years, anyway. Consider replacing your generic garage door with a modern, decorative door, like a carriage style or other contemporary style. Garage doors are yet another place to add a pop of color, too!

8. Replace Your Front Door

Your front door gives your house so much character; consider upgrading your door to give that character a much needed face lift. Your new door can come in a variety of styles and materials, from wood to steel, aluminum, or fiberglass. Frosted glass windows can let in light while maintaining privacy. You could even expand your existing door frame to include a sidelight or two, allowing you to see who’s ringing the doorbell before answering.

If you’re looking for extensive remodeling, contact an experienced contractor to assist in your decision process. We’ll help you navigate the various options available to modernize your home. Contact E&E Contracting today.

On many of our recent projects our customers have been interested in learning more about stone veneer and natural stone as a siding option, and many of them have chosen to use these materials as an accent to other siding materials. Today we are going to provide some information on natural stone and stone veneer, and how to successfully use them to add a unique touch to your home. 

Stone Veneer Siding

Engineered stone veneer is molded from carefully selected stone taken from unique geographic areas and cast to accurately imitate the look and feel. Once the veneers are molded and cast they are carefully colorized using raw pigments and oxides, making each stone unique and true to natural stone. Stone veneer is typically cheaper to install since each stone has a flat back. 

Natural Stone Siding

Home Builders have been using natural stone siding for hundreds of years and we still love it as an option today. Stone veneer siding has come a long way in recent years, but natural stone is still the only way to get a truly authentic look. It is also extremely durable and the color won’t fade over time. 

Adding natural or stone veneer as an accent to the home has become an increasingly popular option, but where on the home should this accent be placed? Let’s take a look at some of our favorite locations for a stone accent. 

Using Stone Siding as an Accent

Adding natural or stone veneer as an accent to the home has become an increasingly popular option, but where on the home should this accent be placed? Let’s take a look at some of our favorite locations for a stone accent.

Entryway

Using stone siding to frame out an entryway is a great way to welcome visitors into your home. We love pairing stone entryways with upgraded doors and trim to bring in a color pop that accents the natural look of stone. 

Chimney

Stone chimneys may seem like an obvious choice, but many homes in the last 30 years have been built with stucco chimneys. These stucco chimneys inevitably wear out, and many of our customers are choosing to go with natural stone or stone veneer siding to replace the stucco. 

Two-Tone Siding

We recently completed a project that used both vinyl and stone veneer siding on the entire home and loved the results. This homeowner also decided on a standing seam metal roof overhang to separate and perfectly accent both materials. 

Pairing Stone and Siding Colors

Whether you are using stone for a remodel or a new home build it is important to choose siding, shutter, door, and window colors that pair well with the natural look of stone. Let’s discuss a few of our favorite color palettes to match with your engineered or natural stone siding. 

White Siding with Stone

Pairing white siding with stone is a very popular choice, especially when paired with black doors, windows, and shutters. Both white and black will work with almost any colored stone, and the black doors and windows provide a beautiful contrast with the lighter stone and siding colors. 

Bright Colors

Bright colors and stone aren’t something that is right for everyone, but it can add a contrast and pop to your home’s color palette that will make it stand out in the neighborhood. The key to this color palette is less is more. We love introducing creative colors to the door of the home and using more traditional colors for the siding and windows. 

Pairing Stone with a Warm Color Palette

Pairing a warm siding color with stone is a great way to make your home standout without getting too crazy. Warm colors can complement the natural look of stone and add a subtle contrast to your home’s color palette. Warm colors can include orange, brown, tan, and red. We also love pairing the color of natural wood with stone, which feeds into the natural feeling of stone while tastefully accenting the colors. 

Have you decided that you want to incorporate stone veneer or natural stone into your next home improvement project? Contact us today for a free estimate!

And the Building Permits Necessary for Each

For homeowners growing out of their living space, adding some extra square footage onto their existing home with an addition is more cost effective than moving to a new house. Additions will also, on average, recoup 62% of their expenses in resale value.

Picking the right addition for your home can be challenging and depends on many factors. First, there’s the functionality of the new space. Then, there’s the total cost. Lastly, you’ll need to consider if there are any zoning or permitting requirements for your home addition. In this guide, we review the 15 most popular home additions and all the considerations you’ll need to take before making your decision.

sunroom on a backyard deck

1. Sunroom/Four Seasons Room

Have you ever wished to soak up some morning sun while reading a book and not have bugs flying in your face? Then a sunroom is a great addition for your home! This addition to the exterior of your home is a glass-walled room that is typically not temperature controlled. As such, you typically use it during the three warmer seasons. Adding HVAC to a sunroom turns it into a four seasons room, making the space available for winter use and a bit more comfortable in the summer.

How much does a sunroom cost?

Adding a sunroom to your home depends entirely on how big you’d like the space to be. They can cost anywhere from $25,000 to $75,000 and turning it into an insulated four seasons room with HVAC can double the cost.

Are there any permitting requirements to build a sunroom?

A permit is required for a sunroom because it’s an addition that extends your roof. You’ll need to contact your local zoning board for one and they may provide you with a list of building requirements. If you’re working with a professional contractor, they’ll know how to handle permitting and may even go through the paperwork for you.

screened enclosed porch

2. Enclosed Porch or Patio

A cheaper alternative to a sunroom is an enclosed porch or patio. If you already have a porch or patio, it’s even cheaper. A contractor can take your existing porch roof and simply build a screen wall around it. This option still keeps the bugs out and the sunshine in, while encouraging air flow. Enclosing your porch does not increase the square footage of your home, however, as it’s still considered an outdoor space.

How much does an enclosed porch cost?

Again, enclosing your porch or patio depends on the size of your porch. It could cost between $2,000 and $3,000 for an existing porch. If you need to build a new porch or patio along with the enclosure, it can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $25,000.

Are there any permitting requirements to enclose a porch?

If the porch you’re enclosing is already covered and under 200 square feet, then you might not need a permit! It’s still best to check with your local zoning board, however. If you’re building a new porch, extending your roof, or if it’s a larger porch, then you’ll likely need to acquire a permit. Professional contractors will understand your local regulations and are willing to help!

A new deck with steps on the back of a home

3. Deck

Decks are perhaps the most simple and popular addition on this list. They are a mainstay of many american backyards as they provide a great space for grilling and hosting summer parties. They do not add square footage to your house, because they are outdoors, but they increase your home’s value at a better rate than other additions due to their popularity.

How much does a new deck cost?

A typical new deck will vary in cost from $15,000 to $35,000 depending on size and height. More complicated, multi-level decks will cost tens of thousands of dollars more, depending on complexity.

Are there any permitting requirements to build a deck?

If your deck will be under 200 square feet and less than 30 inches above ground, some local ordinances allow you to build without a permit. Above that size, you’ll likely always need a permit. Again, you should definitely check with your local zoning department before any construction starts. You may also need an inspection after construction. Your deck contractor can help navigate permitting.

red backyard shed

4. Shed or Storage Barn

A shed or storage barn might not add space to your home, but it sure will free up space in your home! Homeowners use sheds to store garden equipment, lawnmowers, sports equipment, seasonal decorations and more. You could even give your kids more play space by turning a shed into a playhouse. Kids aren’t the only ones allowed to have fun in a shed, as they make great man caves or she sheds for mom and dad, too!

How much does a new shed cost?

A typical shed will cost anywhere between $4,000 and $15,000 depending on the size and materials. Buying a prefabricated shed over a custom build can also be cheaper. If you want to run electricity to your shed, that can cost an additional

Are there any permitting requirements to build a shed?

Some localities allow you to construct a shed up to 1,000 square feet without a permit. Others narrow this down to as little as 200 square feet. Since this range varies by locality, you should contact your local zoning department or a local shed contractor.

bathroom addition

5. Extra bathroom

A more costly but valuable addition to your home is an extra bathroom or half-bath. You can either create one from an existing room or expand your square footage with a bump-out (more on those later). Bathrooms, along with kitchens, are expensive additions because of their plumbing needs but they provide such a great flexibility to your family and guests.

How much does a new bathroom cost?

A new half-bath can cost as little as $15,000 and a full bath can cost as much as $75,000. The cost varies widely depending on proximity to existing plumbing and size. If you are also planning expanding your square footage with a build-out, that increases cost by 

Are there any permitting requirements to build a bathroom?

Whenever you are opening up walls and floors to add plumbing, you’ll need a permit. That includes adding a new bathroom to your home. If you’re simply renovating an existing bathroom by replacing your sink or toilet, no permit is needed. Some contractors will help you acquire the necessary permits from your local zoning department.

cabin style garage addition

6. New Garage

If your home doesn’t already have a garage, building a new one is a great idea to expand your storage space and keep your vehicles out of the elements. There’s a lot you can do with a garage. It can be attached or detached, one or two stories, single or double car, and with or without temperature control.

How much does a new garage cost?

A new, one-story, single car garage that’s attached to your house without HVAC can cost between $25,000 to $45,000. Adding a second car width adds $10,000 to $20,000. A second story adds another $25,000 to $35,000. A detached garage is more expensive (there’s one more wall to construct) and adds $10,000 to $20,000. Add several more thousand dollars if you’re adding HVAC.

Are there any permitting requirements to build a garage?

Yes, since you are building an entirely new structure you’ll need a permit. A good contractor will help you navigate the complexities of permitting and zoning.

E&E Siding Materials

7. Second Story Room Above an Existing Garage

One way to expand your square footage is to build second-story rooms above areas in your house that are only one story. Above we mentioned building a two-story garage from scratch but you can also add a second story to your existing garage. In general, adding a second story room is more expensive than building out your first floor, but it’s a great option if you’re limited on lawn space.

How much does a second story addition cost?

As mentioned above, this is one of the costlier additions and can cost between $200 and $300 per square foot. An addition like this above your garage could cost upwards of $200,000.

Are there any permitting requirements to build a second story addition?

Yes, you’ll need a building permit as well as electrical or plumbing permits if you’re adding those as well. It is also necessary to have an inspector determine if your foundation can handle a second story. An experienced contractor will know which permits are necessary for your second-story addition.

carport addition protecting cars

8. Carport

A simpler and cheaper solution than building a garage to protect your car is building a carport. Carports won’t protect your cars from all potential damage, but it still keeps them out of the rain, snow, hail and harsh sun rays.

How much does building a new carport cost?

Depending on the size and existing foundation, your carport could cost anywhere from $3,000 to $15,000. This addition has one of the best returns on your investment, recouping almost 100% of your cost.

Are there any permitting requirements to build a carport?

Yes, since there is roof work and possible foundation work involved, you’ll likely need a building permit for your new carport. Helpful contractors guide you through the process of obtaining permits.

finished attic bedroom

9. Finish Your Attic

Why build a whole new addition to your home so you can increase the square footage, when you already have square footage waiting to be finished? Finishing an attic is a great example. For your attic to count in the square footage of your house, it must be liveable space and accessible from the interior of the house. This means it’s finished with walls, flooring and at least 7 foot ceilings. The size of your floor space is determined by where the 7-foot ceiling is and you can only count it as a bedroom if it’s at least 70 square feet. Adding dormers to your roof is an easy way to expand the 7-foot tall floor space.

How much does finishing your attic cost?

The average cost to finish your attic is $40,000 but can cost as little as $12,000 or as much as $70,000. It varies depending on square footage, electrical, HVAC and/or dormers. 

Are there any permitting requirements to finish your attic?

If you are only finishing the walls and flooring, then permitting is likely not necessary. Permits are needed if you are making any structural changes, like with dormers, or adding any wiring, ductwork, etc. If you discuss your vision with a contractor, they’ll be able to help you understand what permits are necessary.

finished basement with carpeting

10. Finish your basement

Similar to finishing your attic, you can finish your basement to add square footage to your home. Depending on your locality, you may need to follow certain guidelines, such as installing escape windows and listing above- and below-grade square footage separately. You’ll need to finish the floors, walls and ceilings to count as liveable space. Nevertheless, finishing basements add value to your home.

How much does finishing your basement cost?

Finishing a basement costs anywhere from $3,000 to $80,000, with an average around $20,000. This depends on how large the space is, how many rooms you’re constructing, and of course plumbing, ductwork and electrical.

Are there any permitting requirements to finish a basement?

It’s unlikely that you’ll come across a basement finishing project that doesn’t need a permit. If any type of structural work is done, any plumbing, electrical or HVAC, or if an egress needs to be created (which often does by law), you need a permit. Experienced contractors in your area will know the requirements in your jurisdiction.

bay window dining room

11. Bump out

Bump outs are house additions that literally bump out of the existing structure of the home, typically on ground level. They can be as simple as extending an existing living room, to adding a closet, to adding a bathroom or kitchen extension with complex plumbing. Adding a bay window & seating is a very popular form of bump-out that lets in lots of natural light. You can make a bump out as small as 2 feet and as large as 15 feet extended from a current wall.

How much does a bump out cost?

A bump out could cost anywhere from $5,000 to $30,000 depending on the size and functionality. Adding plumbing and appliances for a kitchen, bathroom or laundry room also impacts the total cost.

Are there any permitting requirements to add a bump out?

Yes, you’ll likely need a permit to build a bump out and you’ll need additional permits if you are wiring electricity and/or installing plumbing. Your contractor can help you navigate the complexities of permitting.

mudroom with cabinets and coat hooks

12. Mudroom

Mudrooms are fantastic additions to your entryways that help you store coats and dirty shoes. They can be built in your interior or exterior as new structures or an enclosure of your patio. Building one as an enclosure of your patio is a great way to keep the same footprint while increasing the functionality of your home. Your mudroom should include hooks for clothing, an umbrella holder and a bench for removing shoes.

How much does a mudroom addition cost?

A mudroom addition can cost anywhere from $4,500 to $30,000 depending on how much structural work is needed. Enclosing an existing patio or sectioning off interior space are cheaper than building one from scratch.

Are there any permitting requirements to add a mudroom?

Depending on the extent of the construction project, you may or may not need a permit. It’s best to do your due diligence and contact the local zoning department in your area for specific information. A local contractor should also know what is needed.

Dark brown pergola with lights covering a backyard bar

13. Outdoor Kitchen

If you love entertaining guests during the summer months, then turning your backyard into another kitchen is a perfect addition to your home. Install a permanent grill and countertop, some storage, refrigerator, and possibly even a sink. Choose from a variety of countertop options that fit your style, from stainless steel, to tile, to granite. Creating your dream outdoor kitchen will make your house the go-to summer party place.

How much does an outdoor kitchen cost?

An outdoor kitchen can cost as little as $15,000 to as much as $100,000, depending on how many options you go with and how large it is. This addition makes for an amazing addition, as you can often recoup 100% of the value put into it.

Are there any permitting requirements to build an outdoor kitchen?

Permits might not be needed if you’re simply adding countertops and a grill with its own propane tank to your existing patio. As soon as you plan to connect your grill to a gas line, a sink to plumbing, or wire electricity to an appliance, you’ll need permits. Your contractor can help you during this stage in the planning process.

permanent pool house

14. Pool House

Do you have a pool with nowhere to store the equipment? Don’t take up your precious garage or shed space, build a pool house instead. These detached additions offer a permanent solution to storing pool chemicals, nets, vacuums and toys. It can also provide you and your guests a place to privately change without bringing pool water into your home.

How much does a pool house cost?

A small, detached addition could cost as little as $15,000 without any extras. If you’re looking for plumbing, heating or electric, it could cost $75,000 or more.

Are there any permitting requirements to build a pool house?

You will likely need a permit to build a new permanent structure on your property, like a pool house. It’s definite if you’ll be adding heating, plumbing or electricity. If you’ll also be needing excavation and site-preparation, you’ll need to submit a site plan to your local building department as well.

detached guest suite in backyard

15. In-Law Suite

Looking for a place for guests to stay over without crowding your home? A guest suite, a.k.a. In-law suite or granny flat, provides extra space for guests and some independence for extended stays. This detached addition is a small apartment, typically 500-750 square feet, with a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen and possible living room. With an in-law suite, there’s also an opportunity to earn some extra income from renting it out to students or hosting Airbnb guests.

How much does it cost to build an in-law suite?

An in-law suite is possibly the most expensive addition on this list at around $90,000 to $120,000. The good news about this investment is that you’re likely to retain 100% or more of the value put into the build. You can actually make money on the long-term with this investment, too, by renting it out.

Are there any permitting requirements to build an in-law suite?

You will absolutely need permits to build a guest suite, especially because of all the new plumbing, electrical, and HVAC needed for new living quarters. You may also be required to submit a site plan to the local building department. Talk to your contractor before beginning any work to ensure that your permits are in-line.

Start Building a Home Addition

Did one of these home additions peak your interest? Talk to the specialists at E&E Contracting to discuss your project scope. We’ll help you understand the full process, including permitting, and provide you with a complimentary estimate.

As the summer months arrive many homeowners begin noticing dirt buildup, imperfections, and even damage to their siding that happened during winter and spring. These months can be tough on your siding, and many homeowners don’t know how cleaning or repair techniques differ across different types of siding. Today we’re going to take a look at how to restore your siding to its former glory, and decide when it’s time for a full replacement. 

Inspecting Your Siding

The first step in cleaning any siding type is inspecting for mold, mildew, or dirt buildup. It is also important to identify areas where your siding is exposed to excessive amounts of moisture. Things that can expose your siding to moisture include sprinklers, runoff from downspouts or gutters, and mulch buildup at the base of your home. 

How to Clean LP Smart Siding

At E&E we use LP Smartside Siding, which is notoriously easy to clean and care for. If cleaning is necessary, use a cloth, sponge, or soft bristled brush. LP recommends a cleaning solution of three parts water and 1 part white vinegar in a guide on their website. 

Cleaning Diamond Kote Siding

Diamond Kote Siding is built on LP Smart Siding, and makes a durable product even more resistant to weather and fading. The cleaning process is very similar to LP Smartside, simply wash with water and a mild detergent with a soft cloth or sponge. There are some unique recommendations for touch up painting, you can read all about it in their care and maintenance guide. 

Repairing LP Smart Siding

Small chips, scratches, and imperfections on vinyl siding can usually be repaired by simply touching up with matching paint. You should also check the seams of your vinyl siding to locate any caulk that has dried, cracked, or lost its seal. You can learn to recaulk your own siding with this handy guide, or contact a professional contractor. 

How to Clean Vinyl Siding

To clean vinyl siding use a soft bristled brush that will get dirt and grime from the faux wood grain without damaging the finish. There are lots of vinyl siding cleaning solutions on the market, but you can also use Murphy’s Oil Soap, Fantastik, or Windex. You can power wash vinyl siding, but you should be sure to read your power washer’s instruction manual carefully so you don’t damage the siding. 

Repairing Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding can be prone to cracks and holes, especially in heavily wooded areas. Here is a great guide if you plan on tackling the job yourself, but we recommend hiring a professional contractor. 

How to Clean Cedar Siding

The beauty of cedar siding is very appealing, but it requires more maintenance than vinyl or fiber-cement. Many of the stains used to bring out the beauty of the cedar attract algae, mildew, and mold. To clean cedar siding we recommend using oxygen bleach. It’s tough on mildew, and won’t harm your plants located close to the home. Load the Oxygen Bleach in a garden sprayer, scrub with a brush, and rinse. 

Cedar Siding Maintenance

Small holes and imperfections in cedar siding can be repaired with wood putty. Apply the putty with a putty knife, work it into the damaged area, and allow it to dry for the recommended time. Once it dries, simply sand it down until it is flush with the wood. If you need to replace damaged or rotting planks follow this guide, or contact a professional contractor. 

Cleaning Fiber Cement Siding

Fiber cement siding is often considered to be the most durable siding on the market, and shouldn’t require much maintenance to maintain its beauty. Things like dirt and mulch buildup can usually be cleaned by simply hosing the siding down with water. If you notice mold and mildew building up use a mildew specific cleaner, your garden hose, and a soft cloth or sponge. Fiber cement siding should never be pressure washed, it can damage the finish. For more information on cleaning fiber cement siding check out James Hardie’s website

Fiber Cement Siding Maintenance

Be sure to check the seams of your fiber-cement siding and remove and replace any dried or damaged caulk. James Hardie recommends using permanently flexible caulk, which is usually stated on the label. Chips and cracks can be filled in with a cementitious patching compound, which can be used for cracks and holes up to .25” deep. 

When to Fully Replace Siding

It’s a tough decision to make, but sometimes your siding is beyond cleaning or minor repairs and needs to be fully replaced. We have outlined a few key signs that point towards a complete siding replacement below. 

At E&E we are experienced in siding repair and replacement, and work with vinyl, cedar, Diamond Kote, and Fiber-Cement siding. Contact us for a complimentary estimate, we would love to assess your siding and recommend next steps.

Time to dust off your deck and outdoor furniture because the season of backyard barbeques and get-togethers is back! Preparing your deck for summer and ensuring it’s ready to go is essential for keeping your backyard gatherings safe. Keep an eye on the weather for non-rainy days and set aside some time to prepare your deck with these 5 steps.

#1: Rinse Off Your Deck

The first step in preparing your deck for summer is rinsing it off. Rinsing your deck makes the next step (inspection) much easier as it exposes areas needing work. You’ll want to remove all furniture, appliances, and decorations, then sweep off your deck to get rid of any debris.

When rinsing and cleaning your deck, it’s best to use a power washer. While you can use a mop or hose to rinse off your deck, a power washer will make the process much more efficient. However, to make sure damage isn’t done to the deck’s wood or existing stain, high-pressure settings should be avoided. If you don’t own a power washer, many hardware stores (like Home Depot) have some available to rent.

Finally, wait until your deck is fully dry before moving on to the next step. Inspecting your deck once it has dried will help you see minor details better.

#2: Inspect the Deck

When inspecting your deck, look for any damage, safety concerns, and/or needed repairs. This includes checking for non-secured nails and screws, rot, debris, lifted boards, splintering wood, pests, any nails sticking out, and faded stain. As you go through your deck inspection, tighten any loose nails and screws that you notice. You can also repair splintering wood by sanding it down.

While your main focus may be on your deck’s physical condition, also take time to check for insect nests that could cause injuries like wasp and hornet nests.

#3: Give the Deck a Good Cleaning

Depending on the condition of your deck and the inspection you did, you may only need to clean off your deck to prepare it for company. There are many deck cleaning solutions on the market, however, it’s good to keep in mind that the cleaner you choose will affect your yard, soil, and vegetation. If you need to restain your deck, cleaning the deck is an important step before staining can begin. Skipping the cleaning process and going straight to the next step will make deck stain look bad and fade fast.

To clean your deck, put your choice of cleaning solution in a bucket and use a push broom or mop to spread it evenly on your deck. You should push the broom or mop hard enough to scrub off all the dirt and grime. To clean in between deck boards, you can use a screwdriver with a flathead. After you’ve finished scrubbing and rinsing off the cleaner, your deck will need time to fully dry. On average, this usually takes a minimum of 48 hours.

#4: Apply New Deck Stain

Staining a wooden deck will improve its appearance and add years to its life. You’ll want to choose a stain that works best with your deck’s age and type of wood. Most deck stains are either oil-based or water-based. Choosing between an oil or water-based stain depends on personal preference, deck traffic, the climate you live in, and what wood the deck is made from. If you would like your deck to have a more natural look that shows off its wood grain, a semi-transparent stain is recommended.

Next, apply the stain lengthwise to 2-3 deck boards at a time. Your newly stained deck will need at least 24 hours to fully dry for the first coat. Adding a second coat of stain is more of a personal preference than a necessity. If you decide to add a second coat, you will need to wait until the first coat is completely dry. Additionally, no one should walk on or across the deck while it’s drying.

#5: Prepare Furniture, Appliances, and Decorations

Freshen up your outdoor furniture by cleaning it, replacing old cushions, and making any needed repairs. If you’re looking to totally revamp its look, find new ways to style and decorate your deck. Some decorative options include hanging lights, tiki torches, live plants, an outdoor rug, a firepit, a cantilever umbrella, and much more. Lastly, don’t forget to clean your grill and get it ready for summer cookouts!

Now that you’ve finished preparing your deck for summer weather and get-togethers, you can relax and have a good time. Providing plenty of options and years of experience and expertise, we’ve helped countless homeowners create a perfect outdoor space. If you’re looking to replace or extend your deck, we’d love to talk with you and give you a free quote!

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