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From the perspective of Shara Gamble, marketing manager for TAMKO’s Envision line of decking products, today’s palette of colors is more than broad enough to help solve some of the indooroutdoor transition needs of clients seeking to visually merge indoor and outdoor living spaces. After spending months listening closely to their customers—both deck builders and remodelers— the real need is how best to meet the homeowners’ desired personalized touches for their deck design.
“Their needs are being met with the current color palette. But many of them expressed that they are running into some needs and demands from homeowners for personalization, and to meet the requests for some of the new ways that people are using these outdoor spaces,” Gamble says. “How can I install differently? How can I make things unique? How can I personalize them to this particular client?”
Following this response from its customers, the TAMKO Envision decking division wanted to make sure that all its newly expanded lines were interoperable for the deck builder. They recently came out with its Distinction line, which was extended to the Inspiration line and the Expression line. “It was important to us that a contractor could take an attribute from one of those lines and marry it to another to give an unique look. Those unique looks might be achieved by installing an accent or an inlay, as well as some different methods for installation to make curves. Homeowners want their decks to be new and modern and fresh.”
“[WE ARE] MOVING AWAY FROM THE TRADITIONAL LOOK AND FEEL OF A COMPOSITE BOARD.”
– Joey Peters, marketing manager, Oldcastle
If the main area of a deck is one color, the homeowner may want a different color on a different level. “It’s the same as we are seeing with designers of indoor spaces. You want to have an accent to pull in a color and match your personal style,” Gamble explains.
Many companies spoke of the trend toward picture framing of decks, outlining them with a darker accent color. To that end, Deckorators has come out with a 21-foot board expressly for that purpose. The extra foot of length in the board is to account for 45-degree corner cuts that are necessary within the process of picture framing.
The surface temperature and texture of boards is also an important point of reference in today’s expanding offering of deck boards. Deckorators’ Camfferman extolled the no-slip virtues of some its more deeply embossed products, which have been intentionally designed to alleviate homeowner concerns about slips on wet plastic surfaces.
Matte finishes were cited by many as being another point of differentiation within certain deck designs that might also include glossier finishes.
Two years ago, MoistureShield put a stake in the ground on the issue of hot deck board temperatures— perhaps too hot to step on with bare feet. The company introduced it’s CoolDeck technology, a formulation that absorbs less heat from the sun.
New applications for decked spaces is also part of the mix. In response to the growth in the number of new decks being built on top of residential buildings in urban areas, Deckorators has introduced a new line of boards—2-inch by 2-inch boards—made of composite decking material that are laid upon roofing material to serve as a base for a deck to be built on top. “It is a floating deck,” Camfferman says. “And that is what that application requires in many cases.”
In 2019, new decks will be one of the highest demanded types of remodeling projects. They will be built on rooftops, on hillsides stepping down to patios, and they will be merged and integrated onto the rear interior living rooms of homes more seamlessly than ever before. This will be the result of new darker and richer colors, including dark grays, to better match interior flooring and accents.
But perhaps most importantly, alternative decking material is taking on all categories of wood decking products, hoping to eat away at the massive 83 percent share wood currently enjoys.
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