What are the positive and negatives about constructing a free standing deck? I have purchased a house with brand new siding and I would prefer not to cut into it. Isn't placing support beams right next to the house the same as using a ledger board?
Yes. The nice part about not attaching the deck to the house is that any rain will run down the siding to the ground and not get hung up at the deck or ledger board possibly causing future rotting.
We have a freestanding deck/porch. It's great. If you do put a roof on your freestanding deck, I would recommend NOT attaching it to the home -- the roof can extend over your home's roof. Otherwise you've got two freestanding structures only attached by the roof.
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