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New Deck- house connection?

I am building a deck and every project I have seen has the deck bolted to the house in one way or another. As long as you provide the appropriate additional footings and post supports I don't think it is necessary to attach the deck to the house. Is this correct?

Re: New Deck- house connection?

if your are going to have a floating deck you will have to have 2 sets of beams with the appropriate concrete footings and piers to support it.

up until about 10 years ago it was ok to simply have a floating deck sitting on deck blocks, however after a string of hurricanes in the early 2000's a large amount of decks were simply blowing away. so many municipalities made it that decks MUST sit on proper concrete piers 4 ft in the ground. why dont you want to bolt to the house.

Re: New Deck- house connection?

I see no reason why it could not be engineered as a completely free-standing structure. Of course, "engineered" is the operative word; be prepared to submit a stamped drawing.

Re: New Deck- house connection?

I prefer a free standing deck for some practical reasons;

1- the house moves and settles differently than the deck, so if one has a problem the other may not.

2- The house to attached deck joint often is a source of water penetration. Flashing there can be "challenging"

3- If you leave a 2" gap between the house and the deck, you'll have good air flow to keep rot away, let tree leaves fall through, room for a paint brush, room for power-washing the deck and house, and snow melt to go somewhere. At the doorways bring the deck board a little closer, leaving a 1/2" gap or so.

Re: New Deck- house connection?

A freestanding deck can be done, but on an existing house the foundation has to be engineered a bit. The footing will have to go down to the same elevation as the house footing so no lateral pressure is put against the existing wall. Tying the two together is required too.
If the foundations are poured at the same time, not much problem. But if you want to put a deck foundation that only needs to go down to 36" for frost depth next to a basement that is 8' below grade, the deck foundation next to the house will need to go down 8'.
If no basement then the "hole" precess is easier.
That's why they are usually attached to the house.

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