Outdoor decks are losing popularity among home buyers, and so fewer new properties are being built with them according to the latest census data, the National Association of Home Builders reported this week.
The data shows that just 22.6% of new homes built in 2018 feature decks, down a full percentage point from a year ago, the NAHB said in its Eye on Housing blog.
It adds that the share of new homes with decks began to decline back in 2009, and reached its lowest point in 2012 when just 22.2% of all newly constructed properties featured them. One reason for buyers ditching the deck, so to speak, is that it almost always means higher costs which are reflected in new home prices.
The NAHB notes that fireplaces are also in a similar decline.
Of course the popularity of decks does depend a lot on where you live. For example in the East South central Region, which includes the states of Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi and Tennessee, around 57% of all new homes in 2018 featured decks. However in the South Atlantic region, which includes the Carolinas, Florida and Georgia, just 18% of new homes featured decks.
The deck is a pretty significant feature to have in a home, with the average size in a newly built single-family home coming in at 250 square feet, the NAHB said. The Middle and South Atlantic regions tend to have the largest decks at just under 300 feet. The most popular materials used in deck construction include treated wood and composite, which is a mix of recycled wood fibers and plastic.