(Family Features) The arrival of sun and climbing temperatures mark the end of months in hibernation and the ideal time to refresh your outdoor living space. While constructing a new deck can be a major undertaking, the planning process doesn’t have to be, thanks to a wealth of online tools and resources available at your fingertips. In fact, it’s now possible to design the deck of your dreams entirely on your favorite electronic device.
During the past several years, there has been an influx of online resources to help homeowners create and plan their ideal outdoor living spaces. Following are just a few of the helpful and handy digital destinations for those looking to make their dream decks a reality.
Visual social channels. Today’s social channels are packed with inspirational images. You can peruse thousands of decks and outdoor living projects on Houzz and Pinterest. You’ll also find ideas from many building materials brands and suppliers on these channels, as well as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
Magazine and manufacturer websites. For additional inspiration, you can flip through the digital pages of your favorite home and garden magazines via their websites, and tour the online inspiration galleries of decking manufacturers and contractors. Each destination offers a unique experience, along with valuable information about different brands and products.
Digital apps. As you transition into the design phase, seek out an online application that allows you to experiment with various combinations and configurations. The award-winning Trex Deck Color Visualizer app for iPad is one such tool. This virtual resource allows users to experiment with the colors of various deck elements, as well as different railing configurations, to design a completely customized outdoor living space. Once the user has created an ideal design scheme, the finished photo may be saved to the iPad and shared with friends, family or potential contractors.
Interactive planning tools. Those further along in the planning process can take advantage of other online resources such as sample deck plans and video tutorials. Additionally, many major manufacturers offer user-friendly deck design tools on their websites that enable homeowners to specify dimensions, materials and color selections to bring their dream decks to life.
With the many tools and resources available online, designing your dream outdoor living space can be nearly as much fun as enjoying the finished product. For more information and inspiration, visit www.trex.com.