Get your dream deck

How to get the right backyard retreat for your house.

Mountain views
Mountain views
The deck design mimics the undulating curves of the mountain view and the home's own rear facade, which is concave. Deck boards made of ipe, an ultra-dense Brazilian hardwood, do not demand annual resealing and handily shrug off kids, pets, and dragged chairs.

Mindful that the site's original deck and arbor blocked the fabulous vista, designer/builder Gary Marsh specified the steel railing, which is powder-coated to resist rust, because it practically disappears into the landscape when seen from a distance.

"It's an illusion, of course," says Marsh, who conceived the space. "It's quite sturdy."

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The pros and cons of the various materials you can use to build your dream deck (more)
A deck can handle even the rowdiest parties as long as the beam that carries the floor joists is properly bolted to the side of the house. (more)
See the rest of the photo series here. (more)

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Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer.

Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.