Deck Design Ideas

Decks are synonymous with Australian and New Zealand outdoor living. It’s out on your deck that you can read the Sunday paper, have a barbecue with neighbours or host a party – and come summer, Aussies and Kiwis swarm to them like mozzies to a bug zapper! Decking is also a popular flooring choice for patios, pergolas and pool surrounds, as well as balconies and verandahs. As an extension of your living space, outdoor decking needs to be ripe for relaxation, handle harsh weather and high foot traffic, and suit the style of your home, too. We are, however, spoilt for choice when it comes to decking options, especially regarding the choice of hardwood, which can make deciding on the right timber decking for your needs tough. Before you start building a deck, browse Houzz photos for design inspiration and check out the Stories section for more ideas. Once you're ready, you may want to hire a Landscape Architect or Gardener to help you complete your project.

How do I determine my deck design?


Decks can be customised to suit your home and landscape, so be open to a variety of designs. On this page, you’ll find the likes of balcony, verandah and patio decking, as well as breezeway decks, low-slung decks (barely raised off the ground) and master bedroom decks, just to name a few. If you have a contemporary home, you might prefer a mixed-materials deck with concrete stairs, for example, or rather a more simple party deck, complete with built-in seating and a barbecue. Decks can also wrap around garden features, like a feature tree, or curve through your garden.

If you want to tame a slope in your backyard, a raised deck or platform deck can help with backyard access. It can be covered or left uncovered, but if choosing the latter option, try to add structure to the space with planting. Multi-level decks are also great for sloping lots, and can help zone areas within your backyard. If you want to highlight or make more use of your backyard, consider a freestanding deck, which, complete with an outdoor dining set, seating, a gazebo or umbrella, can be used for entertaining or simply unwinding under the sun. Boardwalk decking is a great way to guide people through your yard, add structure and can help add a sense of design.

What hardwood decking should I use?


Price, appearance and overall maintenance will dictate your choice of hardwood decking. Spotted gum, teak, blackbutt, grey ironbark, jarrah and merbau are all popular hardwood varieties in Australia and New Zealand, while composite decking – a combination of wood and plastic – is becoming increasingly popular, too. Hardwood looks more natural, but does need to be stained and weatherproofed frequently. Spotted gum is one of the most attractive decking materials – it has a lovely grain and requires minimal staining. Teak is the best performing hardwood, but comes with a hefty price tag. If you’re after a red-coloured hardwood, consider merbau, which can handle the harsh Australian climate. Merbau decking will, however, leach tannins, so it’s best avoided near other light-coloured hardscapes. Composite decking is a more low-maintenance option than hardwood decking, as it doesn’t require resealing. It’s also more environmentally friendly: it won’t fade, rot or warp with time, meaning you can maintain the same deck for longer. If you live in a fire-prone area, it’s also less of a hazard.
Design ideas for a contemporary deck in Brisbane with an outdoor kitchen and a roof extension.

Built by Scope Construction
Design ideas for a contemporary deck in Brisbane with an outdoor kitchen and a roof extension.
Open Plan Kitchen/Outdoor Entertainment Area. - tiara_seccombe

Design ideas for a contemporary backyard deck in Perth with a roof extension.

Art Haus and Co
Design ideas for a contemporary backyard deck in Perth with a roof extension.
Curved Timber to Match curved concrete. - nursepeta

Sponsored
This is an example of a contemporary backyard deck in Sydney with a roof extension.

This is an example of a contemporary backyard deck in Sydney with a roof extension.
roof attachment - john45474

Design ideas for a contemporary backyard deck in Melbourne with no cover.

Shannon McGrath
Design ideas for a contemporary backyard deck in Melbourne with no cover.

Inspiration for a contemporary deck in Sunshine Coast.

Manson images
Inspiration for a contemporary deck in Sunshine Coast.
2. Location: Pelican Waters, QueenslandWhy we love it: Could you imagine a more delightful spot to enjoy good food and conversation with your favourite people? - katherine_clark39

This is an example of a mid-sized contemporary backyard deck in Perth with a pergola.

Celebration Homes
This is an example of a mid-sized contemporary backyard deck in Perth with a pergola.
Interesting feature. Doesn't have to have wood - could be some other material - kateellenchristiansen

This is an example of a deck in Sydney with an awning.

This is an example of a deck in Sydney with an awning.
nice pergoda Beelong - cherryhomedesign

Design ideas for a contemporary deck in Melbourne.

Photo - Urban Angles
Design ideas for a contemporary deck in Melbourne.
very nice landscaping to soften deck leading to pathway - andrewheap

Tropical deck in Brisbane with a roof extension.

A central deck open to both levels provides ventilation and light.
Tropical deck in Brisbane with a roof extension.
just love everything about this - aleenastephens

Sponsored
Inspiration for a tropical deck in Sydney with a container garden and no cover.

Inspiration for a tropical deck in Sydney with a container garden and no cover.
Every space being used for a function. Bench in walkway. - tegan_m

Design ideas for a contemporary rooftop deck in Other with a pergola.

photo by Emma Cross
Design ideas for a contemporary rooftop deck in Other with a pergola.
cool posts and stirrups . Bracket fixing is cool too - claudio_guajardo

Design ideas for a mid-sized modern rooftop deck in Sydney with a container garden and a roof extension.

Brett Boardman
Design ideas for a mid-sized modern rooftop deck in Sydney with a container garden and a roof extension.
Light & indoor/outdoor transition - webuser_378872792

Design ideas for a mid-sized contemporary side yard deck in Sydney with a pergola.

Thomas Kayser
Design ideas for a mid-sized contemporary side yard deck in Sydney with a pergola.
Pergola from eaves. Timber floor - irene_williamson

Mid-sized tropical backyard deck in Brisbane with a roof extension.

Hannah Puechmarin
Mid-sized tropical backyard deck in Brisbane with a roof extension.
Like how far railings on balustrade are - gh2015

Inspiration for a beach style backyard deck in Sydney with a roof extension.

Thomas Dalhoff
Inspiration for a beach style backyard deck in Sydney with a roof extension.
If can’t enclose side bit could do massive window instead - jrfreeman

This is an example of a large modern deck in Gold Coast - Tweed with a roof extension.

Tim Casagrande
This is an example of a large modern deck in Gold Coast - Tweed with a roof extension.

Sponsored
Design ideas for a transitional backyard deck in Sydney with a vertical garden.

Pilcher Residential
Design ideas for a transitional backyard deck in Sydney with a vertical garden.

Eclectic backyard deck in Sydney.

Rebecca Lu
Eclectic backyard deck in Sydney.
Like the fittings and the tap below - pephotog