The Tiny Home Craze: Mini Decking

As a tiny house homeowner, you’re likely familiar with the idea of making big sacrifices to embrace the tiny house lifestyle. Who says that your deck needs to be one of them?

The mini-decking craze has been taking off lately in the tiny home movement. It makes perfect sense—who doesn’t want their own outdoor living space to enjoy? While many tiny house homeowners have long since given up their dream of owning a backyard deck, others have risen to the challenge of making their mini deck work with their pint-sized space.

Should you hop on the mini decking craze and build a deck for your tiny home? What do you need to consider? From choosing the right outdoor flooring to considering where to place your deck, read on to find out everything you need to know about the mini decking craze.

Why Build a Mini Deck for Your Tiny Home?

Anyone who has their pulse on the tiny home movement knows that the trend isn’t slowing down. Homeowners, especially first-time buyers, are turning increasingly to tiny houses to downsize their properties to save money and reduce their carbon footprint.

Photo by Glenna Partridge Garden Design

Even so, tiny homes are still a relatively niche market. If you’re like many first-time homebuyers who don’t plan to live in their pint-sized home forever, building a backyard deck can help attract potential homebuyers when you’re ready to sell your tiny home.

Photo by Andrew Snow Photography

Of course, the key benefit to building a mini deck is for your own personal enjoyment. Once warm weather becomes consistent, homeowners want to spend more time outdoors, and tiny house homeowners are no different. A mini deck affords them a small outdoor living space that’s big on charm.

Mini Decking – Considerations for Tiny House Homeowners

Before you can choose the ideal decking for your tiny home, there are a few important things you’ll want to think about before you jump into flooring options. From weight distribution to DIY installation, here are a few mini decking considerations for your tiny living space:

Permanent or Folding Deck?

Is your tiny home moveable? If so, a fixed deck will mean giving up your ability to move your tiny home. If you aren’t ready to plant your roots in a specific location, a folding deck will likely be your best option.

Photo by William Howard Studio

Folding decks are exactly what they sound like. By being able to fold neatly into the tiny home, a folding deck can go wherever your tiny house goes without hindering your movability.

Rooftop or Lower Level Decking?

Don’t want to build out? Consider building up instead with a rooftop deck. Rooftop decks can be accessed either with a climbing ladder on the side of your tiny home or through a small door from the bedroom loft.

Photo by Leib Designs

Not only do rooftop decks maximize your outdoor living space, they also solve the problem of the fixed versus moveable deck situation. Plus, you can decorate the space with rugs or use easy, DIY deck tiles to create a stylish patio area.

However, rooftop decks aren’t without their disadvantages. Tiny homes with decks can be challenging to build and will require installing additional safety features such as a railing.

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DIY or Professional Installation?

Generally speaking, tiny house homeowners are an adventurous bunch. They’ve overcome the initial challenges of owning a tiny house, from headache-inducing zoning laws to finding eco-friendly materials on a budget. As a result, many tiny house homeowners aren’t afraid to tackle a DIY decking project.

Photo by Ecogardens, LLC

But, while a fixed deck DIY project can be a breeze for a home improvement professional, building a foldable deck is another story. If you are dead set on a foldable deck, finding a custom builder with tiny house experience is likely going to be your best bet for a portable, mini decking solution.

Weight Distribution

If you have a movable tiny home, you’ll want to keep the total weight of your home in mind as you shop for decking materials. Some decking materials and accessories are heavier than others, making it all too easy for you to max out your trailer weight.

Photo by Oliver Interior Design

Decking Materials for Tiny Homes

With factors such as deck design and weight in mind, it’s time to consider the best materials for mini decking. While there is no shortage of decking materials on the market, the following are popular options for tiny homes and traditional homes alike:

Traditional Decking

Love the beauty and feel of natural wood? If so, consider building a backyard deck using traditional wood decking. Strong, durable, and boasting a timeless appeal, traditional wood decking can elevate your living space and increase your home value to boot.

Photo by Goodman Landscape Design

The main downside to traditional decking is its high maintenance. Vulnerable to moisture and UV rays from the sun, natural wood decking is often treated to enhance its durability. Even with additional treatments, expect to provide annual upkeep for your natural wood deck.

Composite Decking

Composite decks have come a long way in the last few decades. Once prone to warping, composite decking material has now developed a reputation for being a strong, low-maintenance option for homeowners. It’s also a “green” choice for tiny homeowners, due to its recyclable plastic/wood fiber combination.

Photo by Chattanooga eXteriors

Travertine

Known for its natural beauty and durability, travertine has long been used to create visually striking outdoor spaces. This natural stone is heat resistant and naturally non-slip, making it a common choice for warmer climates.

Photo by Travertine Mart

As beautiful as travertine tile may be, it’s also the heaviest of the three options we’ve mentioned so far. If you plan to move your tiny home to colder climates, you’ll also want to keep in mind that travertine can absorb water, freeze, and then break.

Building the Ultimate Backyard Deck for Your Tiny Home

As you can see, there is a lot to consider before jumping on the mini decking trend. If you decide to go for it and build your dream outdoor living space, don’t forget to put the finishing touches on your mini decking. With a playful rug, some cushions, and maybe a few potted plants, you can pack a whole lot of charm into your tiny backyard deck.

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