Primary Deck Building Codes for Residential Extensions

front view of newton lowers falls composite Salem MA deck builders Dexksos

Adding a deck to your home can have multiple benefits when done correctly. As simple as this structure might seem, there are many things to consider during its construction. One of the major advantages homeowners can enjoy with a deck installation project, for instance, is a significant return on investment. However, to fully enjoy this particular benefit, your extension has to be up to code with all local guidelines regarding their construction. Ignoring these requirements means that the deck will fail any inspection required to officially increase the valuation of a residence because of its addition. 

It’s worth noting that deck building codes vary from region to region when it comes to specifics. As such, brushing up on the particular codes of your local municipality is recommended when considering such an installation. Despite the differences in the guidelines when it comes to the particulars, some foundational codes are generally found in every region when it comes to building decks. Some of these include: 

Fixed Decks vs. Detached Decks 

One of the primary elements to consider is the particular structure involved with the extension. There are two options provided by Deck Builders to homeowners looking to undertake such a project, namely, fixed and floating/detached decks. Fixed decks refer to traditional extensions that are directly connected to the house. Floating decks refer to free-standing structures that are not physically affixed to a residence. In most cases, individuals will only require a permit when installing a fixed deck. Floating decks aren’t strictly governed by building regulations, especially when constructing a small platform deck. However, working with larger platforms that are positioned adjacent to the house might require individuals to follow similar guidelines to that of a fixed deck. It’s always wise to confer with the local building codes of your region to determine whether your particular structure will require adherence to specific codes. 

Fixed Deck Building Codes 

The primary building codes Deck Builders are required to follow when constructing a fixed deck include: 

  • All decks that are 30” or more above the ground will require a railing system to be integrated into the structure’s design. 
  • The deck railings implemented with decks that are 30” above ground will also need to be at least 36” from the deck’s surface to the tip of the railing and have a maximum of 4” between balusters. 
  • The stair railing height should be a minimum of 34” from the top of the rail to the nosing. 
  • Ledger boards should be a minimum size of 2X8, with a width greater than the deck joist’s width, but lesser than the width of the rim joist. 
  • The ledger board should be attached directly to the house, meaning any exterior finishes such as the siding should be removed before the beam is fastened. 
  • The minimum width of the stair treads should be 10”, with a minimum ⅜” difference between different rewards to maintain uniformity. 

The particular codes involved with building a deck are available online via portals provided by the local building authorities. Homeowners who ignore these codes will have a difficult time placing their house on the market with its true valuation, as they will fail the official inspection required for the process. Hiring a professional contractor is the best way to ensure you adhere to your local decking codes, so call us today! Dexksos, your top rated contractor!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts

Scroll to Top