Decks have long been on the list of must-have’s for buyers, but has this desire for an outdoor space grown to monstrous proportions?

Monster decks are now making year-round summer possible everywhere…even in Michigan.  One new 6,000 square foot deck was recently installed in a home in Lake, MI.  It includes a kitchen, resistance swimming pool, spa, fireplace and conversational lounge area.  Another deck, even more lavish, was added to a recently sold $10M home in Montagne, MI.  That deck was considered to be the selling point for the house.

Surveys done by the American Institute of Architecture and the Home Innovation Research Lab indicate there is a 70% increase in demand for outdoor living spaces and that the average deck size at 406 square feet is up 53% compared to 2014.  Both surveys on this increasing demand for decks point to a cultural shift away from formal living spaces  and the complete blurring of lines between indoor and outdoor living spaces.

Toll Brothers, a residential home builder in 19 states, is offering fire pits, heated flooring, snowmelt decks and infrared heating fixtures and accessories so that homeowners can live outside year-round, regardless of weather.  According to Kim Katwijk, owner of Dede Builders, Inc. in Olympia, WA, says that two intersecting home trends are driving this growth of “monster decks”…larger homes and outdoor living reaching mainstream status.

Most “monster decks” being added today range between 1,600 – 3,000 square feet.  Mark Kalady, sales manager for TAMKO Building Products, says that favorite luxury features for these decks include kitchen and dining functions such as grills, built-in pizza ovens, full-cook stoves and sinks. Fire and water features such as hot tubs, lap pools, fireplaces and fire pits are also popular as are “conversational pits,” seating away from cooking and dining areas. The most luxurious “monster decks” are multi-story so that each level can be used for different “themes” such as dining, conversation, swimming, recreational gaming, etc.  Most all are equipped with WiFi, big screen TVs and wireless speakers.  Retractable glass walls and skylights are common.  Deck flooring that used to be made from “plain” wood are out…exotic wooden floor boards produced in factories that require minimal annual maintenance are in.

Kalady says, “…people want living environments where they can be outdoors, yet have all the creature comforts of their home…essentially creating spaces where they can do all the things that they love…” under one roof, so to speak.