2023 Deck Trends to Try for Ultimate Backyard Appeal

Dina Cheney
Written by Dina Cheney
Updated April 7, 2022
A wooden deck
Photo: Dariusz Jarzabek / Adobe Stock

Highlights

  • An upgrade can help you use your deck all year long.

  • Designate zones for different activities, like dining and gardening.

  • Opt for composite decking materials to increase longevity and cut down maintenance.

  • For a modern look, try cable railing.

  • Hide the area underneath the deck with skirting.

  • Go with smart, LED lighting.

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Chatting with friends under the stars, grilling for loved ones, taking work calls under the sun—these are reasons enough to add a deck to your backyard. So why not build one with the most cutting edge features? Read on for 2022 deck trends that will upgrade your outdoor space for four-season fun. 

1. Choose Composite

When you build your deck, choose a composite material that will last a long time and require very little maintenance. Consisting of wood fibers encased in plastic, Trex and Azek look like real wood but don’t expand, contract, warp, or crack. Fade-resistant, they also don’t require staining or treating.

2. Designate Zones

To accommodate a range of activities, ask your local deck builder to establish separate spaces for eating, watching movies, or soaking in a hot tub. Then outfit your deck for these different purposes by adding an outdoor kitchen, bar, fire pit, hot tub, or lounge area.

3. Rethink the Railing

A mother and son play on a deck
Photo: Halfpoint / Adobe Stock

One of the latest 2022 deck trends calls for ditching—or rethinking—the traditional railing. Instead, you can install a cable railing system with metal balusters that run horizontally rather than vertically. Or try water-resistant PVC and vinyl railing. To gain more surface area for dining, put in cocktail railing, which is a flat surface on top of railing that’s wide enough to fit a cocktail.

4. Go with Skirting

To hide the space underneath your deck, use decking material between your deck platform and the ground. Along with obscuring an unattractive area, you can gain storage space and keep out critters. Either go with the same decking material, wood lattice, or stone. For a more modern look, install planks horizontally rather than vertically.

5. Bring in Lighting

Install built-in lighting on deck posts, stairs, and the bottoms of railings. Consider LED lights and smart lighting systems, which you can control from your smartphone or voice-operated virtual assistant.  

6. Add An Inlay

To make your deck’s design more distinctive and help establish different zones, include an inlay in your deck flooring. Inlays are basically unique designs created using contrasting or complementary textured and colored patio pavers. For continuity with the rest of your backyard, repeat this pattern in your landscaping or patio.

7. Include a Garden

Grow herbs or vegetables just a few steps from your kitchen. A new trend is to include permanent raised beds, boxes, or vertical planters on your deck. Be sure to choose a durable and rot-proof deck material if you opt for built-in garden beds. 

8. Consider Comfort

A group of friends by a fire pit
Photo: Cavan Images / Cavan / Getty Images

For climate control, install ceiling fans or heaters and think about building a fire pit. To provide sun protection, add a pergola or sunshade; just make sure your deck can support the weight. You can also hang vines on the roof of your pergola for a charming, European vibe.

9. Install a Fountain

For a tranquil focal point, build a water fountain and illuminate it at night. To avoid water damage, only incorporate it into decks made of treated wood or composite. 

10. Be Set in Stone

Stones add an age-old, upscale feel to decks. Use this material in a fire pit, bench seat, water feature, kitchen, or bar. Or you can simply incorporate stone pillars into your deck’s design.

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