It is finally time for you to build the dream porch on the rooftop deck. Go to the working room and pull out all the designs that you have prepared previously. As the pair for the design, you also need to consider several things related to the building project. What are those considerations?
1. Consider the Possibility
Your future rooftop would be built on top of the current roof structure. Thus, it is essential to check whether the current structure could hold additional weight. Unless you are a building worker, it is best to leave the checking work to the experts: the structural engineer or master builder. They would know the building code and what they mean.
No one should start the building the rooftop with porch without checking this structure first. If you insist to build the additional extension, your house might fall apart. The current roof might not be prepared for another weight. The best and safest option would be replacing the old structure and install the new one. Another option is delaying the construction plan if you don’t have enough money to cover the cost.
2. Gather the Deck Team
Who will be in charge of the rooftop building project? Definitely, this person is not you. The most you could do to help the project runs smoothly is providing the funding and probably describing the rooftop you have in mind. Other than that, you need a proper team to make the project works. This team consists of the architects, engineers, master builders, green roof professionals and landscape master.
Because you are the sponsor of the project, it is recommended to interview the workers before they are appointed to the team. You want to know their experience and what they will do to make your dream rooftop with porch. Another question to ask is the options of materials and their impact to the rooftop. You should know about the overall processes as well.
3. Design the Rooftop
This step requires you to show whatever plan you have in your head. Explain to the master builder the dream rooftop with porch that you want. It would be great to have detailed explanation rather than a vague theme. Remember that a theme could be interpreted differently depending on the person’s taste. You cannot really be mad to your designer if they draw different rooftop as the design.
Some points you need to inform the designers are planting, seating areas and probably the functions of the rooftop. In many small houses, rooftop is the place to hang laundry, thus it requires good drainage system. Others prefer to use rooftop as the star-gazing spot. For social gathering, it would be practical to have storage room in the rooftop.
4. Build the Columns
Are you ready to build the rooftop? Then let’s start with the columns. First of all, consider the size and shape. It is okay to use big sized columns; they look sturdy and steady. What you need to check is the shape; square column will look wider than the round one. However, square column pairs nicely with entases or tapered finishing. Round column must have gentle curve as the pair.
Don’t forget that the column needs proper spacing in between. It should be properly chosen so the house won’t be overpowered. For example, the best spacing for tall and narrow building is the close-spaced column which will leave rectangular opening. Keep in mind to make the space even and do not block any window or door.
5. Pay Attention to Beams, Gutters and Posts
Beams is also called lintels and it supports the column. The width of beams should match the width of the top column. If you use the round column, the measurement must be exact. Square column, on the other hand, allows small space over the column, around ¾ of the real measurement. Gutter is another corner to check. Any rooftop requires good gutters, either the open or concealed type.
For countries with four seasons, internal drains might not work as winter will create clog of ice. Next, check the railing posts; the measurement must be one half (maximum) to two third (minimum). Remember: square column could only match to square post. The round column could work with square or round posts.
6. Draw Pilaster and Roof
What is missing between the roof and the deck? It is no other than pilasters. This structure is usually seen in the conjunction of the house and the deck. A freestanding column could also replace the pilasters. However, rooftop design usually takes pilasters instead of the freestanding column.
It’s a little bit odd to have rooftop without the roof itself. In the design, make sure that the roof is sloped to minimum ¼ inches per feet. If you see a deck above low-pitched roof, it is the common design. No need to worry too much. Some rooftop has deep roof, sometimes exceeding 4 feet. In this case, the architecture might make shallow roof to reach pretty shape.
7. Ensure the Building Law
Remember that in the beginning the master builder should check the number code of your house? Do thorough checking for this matter. You might want to contact local house community. In several regions, the house rules apply to everyone, even the new comers. The contractor that you choose should be able to perform this task.
8. Note the Working Space
While going through the proposal from your master builders, do not give red cross yet if the cost is too high. You need to consider the availability of working space. Rooftop construction takes bigger space than the deck construction. If the access is constricted, the only option is building the rooftop layer by layer. The downside is the high cost, as the workers cannot work effectively.
9. Check the Deck Material
The items in the rooftop will be exposed to weather; the rain, sun, and also the snow. Choosing PVC, vinyl or composite deck would create big mess during summer; they could not stand the heat. The perfect answer for this problem is modified wood. It is sturdy and could withstand the weather. You could also use similar material for any other constructions; the floor, stairs, benches, etc.