Cozy Newberry SC Sunroom and Deck Outdoor Living Combination

As your trusted Newberry SC sunroom builder, Archadeck of Central SC wants you to know that a project doesn’t have to be super-sized to make a big impact. Just take a look at this recent sunroom and deck project!


— Come on in and take a look around!

These Newberry, South Carolina, homeowners didn’t have to make a choice to build just one of their ideal outdoor living spaces. They chose to add two lovely spaces to the back of their home with a low-maintenance custom deck and custom sunroom. If you are ever having a difficult time deciding on the one type of outdoor living structure that best suits your home and lifestyle, Archadeck of Central South Carolina implores you to consider adding more than one option for ultimate enjoyment.


— Newberry SC TimberTech low-maintenance deck and sunroom by Archadeck of Central SC.

There’s a whole lot of good stuff in these two quaint spaces! The low-maintenance deck was built using TimberTech decking and sits directly off the new sunroom, so the two living areas can be used together. The deck was customized with a center parting board and a diagonal decking board installation. This not only adds a designer aesthetic but also eliminates the natural, unfinished seam that would occur if the boards were installed in a linear orientation. The low-maintenance picket railing was an obvious choice for the project and adds beautiful dark contrast against the finish of the decking. Altogether, the sunroom’s siding, decking color choice and railing work in perfect color harmony with the home’s existing masonry and roof color! Archadeck of Central South Carolina will work with you to create a cohesive color palette between your new and existing spaces.


— A deck parting board adds a stylish aesthetic and prevents unsightly seams.

We are your trusted Newberry SC sunroom builder

What can we say about this gorgeous sunroom? We’ll begin with the custom wood-look tile on the floor, which sets the stage for a truly custom designer flair! The sunroom is filled with natural light via extra-wide sliding windows. Maintaining a light and airy feel, the finished tongue and groove ceiling was painted white. Recessed lighting and a ceiling fan will keep the space bright at night and circulate warm or cool air based on the weather. Speaking of the climate inside the room, we installed a split heating and cooling unit, making this sunroom usable all year long. Beautiful furnishings create a comfortable and whimsical space the homeowners and their guests will love being in – day or night, rain, snow or shine!

At Archadeck of Central South Carolina, we want to give you the perfect outdoor living space for your home and lifestyle. Even if you have a limited area in which to build, we can still give you more than one living space to enjoy. The WOW factor doesn’t just come from the size of the deck or sunroom. It’s about the materials used to build the spaces, too, and elements like lighting, fans and heating and cooling that accommodate the most use. We can help you build within a small space with great effect!

If you are looking to improve your outdoor living with a custom sunroom, deck, or even both, call us to set up a free design consultation visit and let’s get started together. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

See more custom sunrooms by Archadeck of Central SC in our sunroom photo galleries.

Must-see Patio, Hardscape and Outdoor Fireplace Project on Lake Murray, SC

Lake Murray outdoor living just got a bit better for this family with Archadeck of Central South Carolina custom hardscapes.

Have you been looking for a way to improve your outdoor living in the Lake Murray area? If so, call on Archadeck of Central SC to embolden your existing space with a new custom hardscape design and installation. We are the preferred builder of Lake Murray outdoor living spaces and we are eager to give you the structure you have always dreamed of, just as we did for these homeowners!


—Show-stopping paver patio and stacked stone fireplace by Archadeck of Central SC

See more of our Lake Murray outdoor living projects!

This project began with a lakeside home that needed an outdoor living space designed to give the homeowners better use of their back yard. We installed a custom patio and matching paver walkways, one leading to the patio from the rear of the home and the other from the patio down to the water. The patio design has straight and curved edges, including a soldier course paver border, which creates a truly custom look. Lake Murray custom patios don’t have to be square! Archadeck of Central SC can create hardscapes shaped to fit your home and yard. This patio now has access from the home and lake and accommodates plenty of outdoor furniture so the homeowners can host get-togethers or enjoy quiet relaxation.


— Enjoy time with loved ones or private relaxation on your own Lake Murray custom patio.

We build custom outdoor fireplaces in the greater Columbia area to fit your style and needs.

This gorgeous stacked stone fireplace will see these homeowners outdoors for more hours, keeping them warm on cooler days and creating ambiance after dark. What’s more, this fireplace is flanked by custom options that will benefit the homeowners.


— Stacked stone custom outdoor fireplace with wood storage and grill/smoker area.

Archadeck of Central SC built a custom firebox to the left, which will house ample firewood, to eliminate storing wood on the patio or ground, where it might become too moist. To the right, we installed a dual grill and smoker.


— Custom fire box for wood storage.

The natural flagstone atop the wood storage is a perfect complement to the fireplace stone.


— Custom grill/smoker area with polished natural stone food preparation space. The grill area is covered with polished black natural stone for food prep. It looks fantastic and will clean up nicely after use.


— Beautiful, natural flagstone accents on the outdoor fireplace.

Archadeck of Central SC is your patio expert in the Midlands!

If you have been considering adding a custom outdoor living space to your Lake Murray home, Archadeck of Central South Carolina has a patio solution for you. Patios are stylish and functional spaces where you can entertain or relax and could be an optional solution if you have been thinking about building a low deck. They are open-air spaces that can be built close to your home, or as in this case, a distance from your back door for a more private, out-of-the-way space. A custom Archadeck of Central SC patio can really give you the feeling of being away from home right in your own back yard. Call on us to design your ultimate patio getaway!


— Have a quiet getaway in your own backyard with a custom patio design from Archadeck.

If you are looking to improve your outdoor living with a custom Lake Murray patio and outdoor fire feature, call us to set up a free design consultation visit and let’s get started together. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Join Archadeck of Central SC at the Columbia SC Home Show this weekend!

Ready to start living the outdoor lifestyle you deserve?

We can show you how!

We have been providing award-winning outdoor living spaces to Columbia and surrounding areas for over 15 years. As specialists in the business of custom-designed decks, porches, hardscapes, sunrooms and much more, we’re confident we can create the outdoor living space of your dreams. Our commitment to excellence in outdoor structure design and building ensures your unique project will bring you enjoyment and pride for many years to come!

Home and trade shows are a wonderful resource to gain new ideas and talk to experts in the field to begin planning your project. Archadeck of Central SC will be participating in the Columbia SC Home Show this weekend at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center.

The show takes place on Saturday, November 3rd and Sunday, November 4th. The show hours for both days are 10:00 am – 5:00 pm. Admission is free! Archadeck of Central SC will be located in booth #222 where you can see and feel samples of our high-quality low-maintenance decking materials and railing options, view our extensive project portfolio and much more! Click here for directions to the show.

Archadeck can help you rethink the design of your aging or underutilized deck, upgrade your deck or patio to a porch, covered porch or sunroom, and learn why Archadeck is synonymous with screened porches and sunrooms.

This comprehensive home show brings together homeowners and many of the most knowledgeable and experienced remodeling and building experts in the area. Every aspect of the home can be explored, from outdoor living space designs to home additions. Professionals will be on hand to share their valuable knowledge to bring your ideas to life or inspire you with new ones.

Don’t let this chance pass you by. We look forward to meeting you at the Columbia SC Home Show this weekend. You can also contact Archadeck of Central SC to learn more about our timeless outdoor living space designs anytime at (803) 603-2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Is it Time to Rethink Your Aging or Underutilized Deck?

Archadeck of Central South Carolina can offer solid solutions if you are ready to upgrade your Columbia SC deck.

There are a few major factors involved in deciding if is time to upgrade or extend your Columbia SC deck. One is having an unsightly (and potentially unsafe), aging deck. Another would be that your wood deck is just too high-maintenance. In addition to those two things, one of the biggest outdoor living problems is having a deck that doesn’t suit your specific needs. Archadeck of Central SC is your best local deck builder, and we can help you make your existing deck like new, creating a beautiful and usable space for your home and family.

Are you seeking a Columbia SC redecking contractor?

Is your current wood deck sucking too much time and money out of your life? Don’t be held hostage by sanding and resealing your deck each year! We know how the beautiful SC sun can damage decks. By design, many folks choose to have their deck in full sun, but that also means that it is subject to full rain and even full snow and ice on random winter days. If you are looking for redecking experts, Archadeck of Central SC should be your first choice. Our experience and knowledge as Columbia SC redecking contractors means we will ensure that every element of your existing deck is structurally sound by doing a thorough deck inspection.


— Lake Wateree redecking project by Archadeck of Central SC

This means we look at your railings, deck framing, deck footings and the manner in which your deck is attached to your home. If your deck passes our stringent inspection, it will be a candidate for redecking. We can remove your wood deck flooring and replace it with low-maintenance synthetic/composite decking such as AZEK or Trex, among others. Synthetic decking will give your family many years of use, always look beautiful and require very little time to maintain. These materials stand up to environmental elements much better than any wood product in existence! Adding a low-maintenance aluminum railing will sweeten the pot even more. No splinters. No painting. No sanding. No sealing. No staining. NO PROBLEM!

Archadeck of Central SC will extend or upgrade your Columbia SC deck

The last thing we want to hear is that homeowners have a deck that is just not suitable to their home and lifestyle, and as such, it doesn’t get much use. We shudder to think of an outdoor space that doesn’t get the usage it was built for. Many folks move into an existing home with some semblance of a deck in place. It might take a few months or even years for us to realize that what worked for the previous family is not working for us. Archadeck of Central South Carolina can custom-tailor a deck that will best suit your outdoor living style.

Maybe your deck isn’t in a prime, accessible location on your home. We find that if homeowners prefer a deck right outside their kitchen, but have one attached to a bedroom or family room instead, it will remain an underutilized space. We can expand your existing deck to connect to the proper backdoor entry and exit point. We offer customization with wrap-around or straight deck expanses that cover a large portion of the back of your home.

If you enjoy entertaining or have a large family, expanding your existing deck just makes sense. We can redeck your old deck and build new decking to match in the expansion. Having a large deck will give you multiple options for outdoor living areas and entry points to your home and back yard. You might choose to have a pergola -covered area for dining or entertaining and an open area for grilling and sun chairs. Maybe you want to add a privacy panel in a quiet corner of your deck. Archadeck of Central SC will help you rethink your existing deck to create your perfect outdoor oasis.

Custom deck upgrades don’t have to be elaborate or large scale. They must be thoughtfully planned to facilitate your family’s idea of outdoor living. We offer solutions for privacy, shade, low-maintenance, high-traffic and any other specific function or design requirement you might have. It doesn’t matter if you entertain frequently or prefer a private corner to enjoy alone time, Archadeck of Central SC has a deck upgrade or expansion solution for you.

If you are ready to upgrade or expand your deck to better suit your home and lifestyle, call us to set up a free design consultation visit and let’s get started together. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Upgrading Your Deck or Patio to a Covered or Screened Porch or Sunroom

Archadeck of Central SC can help you expand use of your builder-grade patio or deck by adapting it to a covered, protected outdoor sanctuary.

South Carolinians are wising up to their outdoor living choices and seeing the benefits of converting their existing basic backyard space into an actual living space. Outdoor living is about so much more than jaunting out your back door for a quick session in front of the grill, only to bring the food back inside to eat! Columbia outdoor living is about enjoying grilling, surrounded by loved ones in a space that can accommodate dining, relaxing and entertaining family and friends. Archadeck of Central South Carolina is here to guide you through converting your builder-grade deck or patio into a space that will invite you outdoors and make you want to stay!

Is a Columbia screened porch or open porch more to your taste?

Open porches, as in covered porches without walls or screens, are a great solution when you would like an outdoor living area that is open-air but protected from sun and rain. Having an open porch atop your walk-out patio is a great solution for upgrading your outdoor living space. Having open sides with ease of access to your backyard might be your preference if you have children or pets who frequently traverse the spaces. Covered porches can be very stylish and attractive. They can accommodate electric hook-ups for ceiling fans, lights, speakers and even TVs. If this sounds like your cup of sweet tea, then a covered porch is right for you!

Screened porches are preferred by families who are looking for all of the benefits of protection from weather, with an added benefit of protection from insects and even birds. Screen technology is such that they can be custom fit to your structure to provide absolute full protection from creepy-crawly-things, while giving you an unimpeded view from your screened area. Screened porches are great places to mount a TV on the wall, or over a fireplace. Note that adding a fireplace will give you even more time each year in your screened porch! Screened areas create great flex spaces. Create an eat-in space for overflow dinner seating for holidays or parties or have a great rainy-day outdoor play area for the kids.

Columbia sunrooms take outdoor living to another level for South Carolinians!

Do you long for good ol’ vitamin D on cold winter days? Do you wish you had a space that stayed warm and cozy in the cooler months with the feeling of being outdoors? Are you looking for a truly custom way to spend time in your home without feeling cramped and shut in? Well, Archadeck of Central SC has a solution for you! Columbia, SC, sunrooms are becoming extremely popular for these reasons and more. Your sunroom can offer you a comfortable space where you are surrounded by but completely protected from the elements. Your sunroom can be heated or cooled and become your own indoor-outdoor place of respite or celebration. Watch TV, read a book, entertain guests, dine in, nap in, have conversations with those you love…and you get year-round usage of this space!

Wait a minute – can my deck become a covered or screened porch or sunroom?

Well, that’s a great question! Our honest answer is, possibly. You see, there are criteria that dictate our ability to do an actual conversion, rather than tear down and rebuild. Depending on the condition of your deck, as well as the original build quality, we can potentially reinforce the deck structure and build directly atop it. Archadeck of Central South Carolina are building experts. We will inspect the condition and integrity of your deck and give you honest solutions for converting or replacing it. In many cases, it can be done!

You can learn more about the criteria we look at to determine if your deck is a candidate for a screened porch or outdoor room conversion here: Our deck-to-screened-porch conversions accentuate the positive while eliminating the negative aspects of outdoor living!

If you are ready to upgrade your basic backyard deck or patio to a custom porch, screened porch or sunroom, call us to set up a free design consultation visit and let’s get started together. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Archadeck is Synonymous with Sunrooms and Screened Porches. Huh?

Sure, deck is in our name, but Archadeck of Central SC is so much more than “just deck builders.” We are expert sunroom and screened porch designers and builders in central SC.

You get what we’re saying, right? Names can be a bit misleading sometimes. Gatorade is not a rescue network for alligators. Wal-mart doesn’t sell walls. And Amazon is not just a river, but one of the largest online retailers in history.

When Archadeck was formed in 1980, they were deck builders but soon became experts in all things outdoor living. Each Archadeck location has its own specialties, driven by the market they serve, largely based on climate and local building and design trends. At Archadeck of Central SC, we are the premier SC sunroom and screened porch builder, providing high-quality, thoughtfully-designed and expertly-executed outdoor sanctuaries for families all over central South Carolina.

See our Central South Carolina custom sunrooms

If you have been considering adding a sunroom, now is a fantastic time to bring your project to life! Since we enjoy short, usually milder winters, a custom sunroom will allow you to enjoy cold-weather days “virtually” outdoors.

Let the sunshine warm you this winter in a new custom-designed and custom-built sunroom. Cozy up at Christmastime around your beautiful fireplace in your four-season room. Enjoy inclement weather days under the protection of a roof, and inside walls of windows, all while having the feeling of being outdoors. Stretch out on comfy furniture and read a book or bring the family out for a movie or game night. You can learn more about other cool-weather activities enjoyed in a custom sunroom in our recent article Football Season and Cool-weather Family Events: 3 Ways Time is Better Spent in Sunrooms!

Archadeck of Central SC is your premier screened porch builder, too!

If you prefer an outdoor haven with fresh, open air and all of the comforts of indoor rooms, we will work with you to design and build the custom screened porch of your dreams! Warm it up on cool-weather days with a custom fireplace. Cool it down on warmer days with a ceiling fan. Keep the central SC insect population out with floor-to-ceiling screens. If you can dream it, we can build it!


— Cozy Archadeck screened porch.

Screened porches are very popular at Archadeck of Central SC because we can spend so much time in outdoor spaces throughout much of the year. Screened porches become an extension of our indoor living spaces and are a fantastic investment for any home and family. They are versatile, just like sunrooms, and can be used for any sort of family activity…or non-activity. We will help you create a truly custom living space in your screened porch. Porches are great gathering spaces and also accommodate quiet moments of solitude. Screened porches add value to your life as well as your home!

Our name is ArchaDECK, and if you ask us that sounds better than ArchaPORCH or ArchaSUNROOM! That doesn’t mean we can’t provide you with the most comfortable and stylish screened porch or custom sunroom you have ever imagined. Call on Archadeck of Central SC for all of your outdoor living needs.

If you are ready to beat the upcoming cool weather and enjoy truly four-seasons outdoor living with a custom screened porch or sunroom, call us to set up a free design consultation visit and let’s get started together. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Football Season and Cool-weather Family Events: 3 Ways Time is Better Spent in Sunrooms!

Archadeck of Central SC is your Columbia SC Sunroom Builder

As summer ends, we begin to anticipate all things autumn. Festivals, foliage, football, pumpkin spice everything, and maybe more than all of these combined, the impeccable autumn weather afforded residents of central South Carolina. Most of us welcome the reprieve offered by crisp mornings and cool evenings, less humidity, and oh, that perfect autumn sunshine. We ask you, would you truly rather spend these splendid days inside a “man cave” or a naturally-lit sunroom? We invite you to come out into the light – enjoy a perfect fall day at home with your family in a sunroom, also known as a four-season room.

As your preferred Columbia SC sunroom builder, Archadeck of Central SC suggests bringing family fun and holiday traditions out into the light!

1. Weekend televised football – don’t go it alone!

No matter your preference of Gamecocks or Tigers, Saturday college football is a much-anticipated time of year. Imagine a Saturday morning prepping your favorite game day foods in your team jersey. This will be the ultimate game of the season. The excitement is palpable! You gather all necessary items to get you through the next few hours, and trudge downstairs to your game day lair – your self-proclaimed “man cave.” This is YOUR time after all. The biggest play of the game – maybe of the entire season thus far – takes place. You jump from your seat, hands raised…look to your left, then right. You realize you are alone. You can’t high-five yourself, so you take a seat. Then, you hear raucous jubilation upstairs. Who’s that? It’s your family! They’re watching too – without you. They’re high-fiving, secret handshaking, and doing their own versions of touchdown dances. You have an epiphany! Your money would have been better invested in a family-friendly sunroom, where everyone can watch the game together and enjoy the beauty, warmth and natural light offered there. Don’t be stuck inside a dungeon for football games – come out into the light!

2. Thanksgiving has never been better with the addition of Columbia sunrooms!

If your home is a hub of activity for the Thanksgiving holiday, there is no better way to accommodate large family gatherings than by adding a sunroom! You’ll love the versatility of the sunroom, not just for the fact that it can be used year-round, but that it is a perfect flex space for large gatherings. A sunroom might be used as additional dining space for holidays and parties, or as the perfect kid-friendly room for after-dinner activities and TV watching. It would also be a great place for the adults to relax after dinner with a glass of wine and great conversation with loved ones. Or start your holiday relaxing in front of the fireplace in your sunroom, sipping coffee while watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on TV. Columbia sunrooms are apt to accommodate just about any Thanksgiving holiday activity you can dream of! Sunrooms are an investment in time well spent with those we love.

3. Late fall evenings of holiday programming – enjoy your favorite Christmas movies in your sunroom!

The terms “Christmas” and “sunroom” might not immediately resonate when used together, but allow us to sway your thinking. Imagine an evening in late fall or early winter, with Christmas fast approaching. It’s your first cool-weather season in your new four-season room. There’s a fire in your custom-built fireplace, and you are cozy inside with a cup of hot cocoa or glass of wine. Your family is gathered ‘round to begin one of your favorite yearly traditions – holiday movies. From Miracle on 34th Street to National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, and every movie in between, you will experience them all anew in your custom sunroom! Imagine dancing flames, twinkling lights, a luminous tree and those we hold dearest gathered near. When anyone asks how you are enjoying spending time in your new sunroom this Christmas season, your reply will be, “It’s a wonderful life!” Remember, it is never too early to start planning for your anticipated sunroom addition.

At Archadeck of Central SC, we truly believe that all family traditions can be better spent in a beautiful, custom sunroom. Enjoy the notion of being outdoors without suffering cold temperatures or inclement weather. Invest in a room whose value is brought to account only by the endless number of hours spent there with family and loved ones, doing the things we love most. Create new traditions and hold fast to old ones in a sunroom built by Archadeck of Central SC.

If you are ready to invest in a sunroom, where traditions are kept and memories made, call us to set up a free design consultation visit and let’s get started together. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

PENNY WISE AND POUND FOOLISH

Sometimes we meet with prospective customers who have tried to cut costs by using a cheap contractor. They tell us about their experiences of structures failing, of not being able to get a builder back to make warranty repairs, or of builders getting in too deep on a project they aren’t able to complete and just disappearing. Here are a couple of recent experiences.

Mrs. Green (not her real name) recently asked Archadeck of Central SC for a quote to repair/replace a raised stone patio that someone else had built which was failing. The foundation was eroding, and the side walls were actually falling down. Stones in the patio were sinking. We gave her a quote that was double what she had originally paid to have it built. She doesn’t want to spend that money to have it done right, but she also doesn’t want to hire another unqualified contractor like she did the first time. She is between the proverbial rock and a hard place.

Another customer, Mrs. White (again an alias), had us quote building a screen porch with a stone fireplace. The project came in around $35,000 and she hired another contractor for less money. A couple of months later, she called us asking us for a quote to undo the work of the other contractor and do the job right. Our price went up from our original quote because of the extensive demolition costs. Mrs. White hired us to do the work, and was very pleased when we were finished with the quality of the work and the quality of the construction experience. Unfortunately, whatever she paid the other contractor was an expensive lesson.

We often hear that Archadeck is expensive. We spend a lot of time and energy trying to keep our costs down so we won’t be too expensive. But there are things we won’t do. We won’t build with cheaper materials that either look bad or won’t perform well for the life of your project. We won’t use suppliers who frequently deliver damaged products to your home causing construction delays, or who leave ruts in your yard when they make a delivery, or who don’t deliver products on time to the job site. We won’t use un-proven subcontractors to save a buck. We won’t use uninsured subcontractors. We won’t give up having an office where you can come see your materials choices and where you can always reach a staff member on the phone. We won’t cut back on staff to manage your job, to make sure that the project is well planned, that permits are obtained, and that you are kept informed about what is going on at your job. And we won’t be hard to find if you have a warranty claim.

If these things are not important to you then maybe Archadeck of Central SC isn’t the right choice to do your project. That’s OK – we aren’t for everybody. But remember, we are talking about your home – the place where you will host your friends and family and where you experience some of the best times of your life. Do you really want to skimp on the quality of your biggest investment and the place where you will spend most of your leisure time?

If your investment in your home is important to you and you want an outdoor living space you can be proud of, call us to set up a free design consultation visit and let’s get started together. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Your Screened Porch Exterior: What's On The Outside Matters Too!

In the third and final installment of our screened porch design series, Archadeck of Central SC explores the tie-in options, roof styles and exterior finish options for your anticipated screened porch project.

Our first installment in this series, 10 Things To Consider When Planning Your Columbia SC Screened Porch Addition, listed the top 10 musts when considering a screened porch. In our second installment, Interior Options For Your Columbia SC Screened Porch, we covered interior finish options. In this post, we are moving to the outside…

As always, one of our goals at Archadeck of Central SC is making sure your screened porch project doesn’t look like an afterthought. We strive to ensure our outdoor rooms appear original to your existing home and landscape. We realize your screened porch interior is what you see on a regular basis, but the exterior of your screened porch affects the view of your home as a whole.

Matching Your Ensemble

How do our designs make it all come together? The first step is to take cues from your existing home. A good option for your porch veneer is to have the exterior of your space stained or painted to match the color of your home. We can also match the fascia, trim, soffit and gutters to your home’s existing hues.

We try to match the color used on your screen porch door to that of the windows and doors of your home, too. A good example is to blend these elements using the knee wall portion of your porch. A knee wall is the area of your screened porch that runs along the lower perimeter of your exterior space. Even a small scale knee wall takes up an area from 18’ to 36’ and can be a key element of your exterior finish focus.

If your home’s exterior is stucco, vinyl, stone, HardiePlank or even brick, we recommend finishing the exterior knee wall with the same medium. With brick and stone veneers sometimes it is difficult to get an exact match because specific colors of stone and brick are often discontinued. If this is the case we will match it as closely as possible.

Low-Maintenance Exteriors

Many Central SC homeowners are choosing to go with low-maintenance exterior finishes by using vinyl or PVC products on the screened porch trim, roof posts and roof beams. These options offer the ultimate convenience. Even small areas can be matched to keep the colors cohesive. If your home’s windows are trimmed in white we can special order aluminum-framed screen porch inserts in white as well. These inserts are available in other colors, too.

Roof Styles

A lot of our customers look for our guidance on the type of screen porch roof to build and where to attach a new porch to their home. Consulting an experienced builder is the key to success in this area. Your existing home’s structure will often dictate where we can tie in the addition and what type of roof will work best for your project. Existing roof lines, dormers, windows, existing skylights, bump out areas such as bay windows and many other factors must be considered.


— Columbia screened porch with gable roof


— This shed roof screened porch is part of an amazing outdoor living combination project we built on Lake Murray.

The three most common roof styles here in the Central SC region are gable, hip and shed. It is not always necessary to match your screened porch roof style to that of your existing home. Often different roof styles can be combined to complement one another. Shed roofs are usually not as complex as a gable or hip roof, and they are the least expensive to build.

  • A hip roof has 3 or more sides that all slope downward from a common point.
  • A gable roof is our most popular roof style. It looks like a triangle with two sides sloping down from a center line.
  • A shed roof is a flat roof that slopes in one direction from the home.

Roof Tie-In, Sidewall Or Detached?

One important decision when designing your new screened porch addition is where to attach the structure to your existing home. This can be achieved through a roof tie-in or a sidewall connection. In most situations, a roof tie-in connection is more elaborate than a sidewall connection, pictured above. Roof tie-in connections require greater experience and expertise to make the connection structurally sound and watertight. As part of a national company, our Archadeck engineers design all the structural details of each screened porch project whereas a lot of local companies let the carpenters make those decisions. Archadeck of Central SC also employees roofing specialists, so rest assured your porch structure will be solid as a rock in terms of where and how it is attached to your home.

When attaching a screened porch to your existing home, we cannot attach the roof where windows sit. The placement of second-story windows makes this a huge challenge. Depending on the style of roof (gable, hip or shed) we accommodate the integration by either keeping the roof line below the window(s) or raising the new roof to cover the windows. We also take water flow and appropriate drainage into consideration when making roof placement and style recommendations for your particular project.

Whenever you consider adding an outdoor space to your home, make sure you pay attention to the finishing touches, both inside and out. As your Columbia, SC, screened porch builder, our goal is to design a space that delivers aesthetic and structural harmony by using compatible design elements.

Contact us today to learn more about our custom screened porches and the many ways you can make your structure truly one-of-a-kind. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected]

Interior Options For Your Columbia, SC, Screened Porch

In the second installment of our design series on Columbia screened porches, Archadeck of Central SC explores the menu of interior options available for your screened porch addition.


Our first installment in this series, 10 Things To Consider When Planning Your Columbia SC Screened Porch Addition, listed the top 10 musts when considering a screened porch. In this story we elaborate on what goes inside your screened porch…

As with any element of design in custom building, you have a wide array of screened porch interior finish options. Screened porches can be constructed with simplicity or sophistication in mind. Areas to consider using as a design focal point when planning your screened porch addition are the floors and ceilings. For each of these areas, Archadeck of Central SC offers a host of options.

Screened Porch Flooring Options

A screened porch can be finished with as much flair as any other living area. Just because a screened porch is an outdoor structure doesn’t mean you have to skimp on style. When choosing flooring for your new porch, it is important to take into consideration the livable, visible space it will add to your home, as well as your lifestyle.

Considerations when choosing a flooring material should include how you intend to use the porch. For example, will you use the area as more of an outdoor living room or for dining, or both? In many cases, the flooring material our clients choose is influenced by what material is used on the interior ceiling or on the posts. Wood is a favorite and since it is under the cover of a roof you don’t have to worry about damage caused by rain or sun exposure. Other flooring options include tile, pavers and concrete.


— Columbia screened porch with low-maintenance composite floor

We do get requests for low-maintenance flooring in screened porches. Synthetic flooring in a screened porch is not necessary because the area is already protected from the elements so degradation of the flooring itself is minimal. Some of our clients, however, choose synthetic or composite flooring in their project. This is especially the case when the goal is to unify a screened porch with an attached deck where synthetics are used. Another reason to use synthetic decking as flooring in your porch is that some synthetic decking companies offer tongue and groove products solely made for use on porches, such as AZEK porch.


— Ultra contemporary screened porch interior

Some of our customers also like to use area rugs to define seating or dining areas on their screened porches. The use of rugs is purely a cosmetic element to convey intimacy, unity and warmth.

Screened Porch Ceiling Finishes

The ceiling area on a screened porch is usually quite large and is the perfect spot to add style and flair to your structure. There are many choices of styles, materials and detailing that can be used to finish your interior ceiling. Here are some ceiling finishes popular among Central SC homeowners:

Pine or cedar tongue & groove — You may want to upgrade your ceiling from pressure-treated pine to cedar. This is especially popular with clients who choose an open rafter ceiling for their porch. When we wrap in cedar, we usually use a rough finish cedar that adds a rustic, log cabin feel. We can also use smooth cedar, which is little more expensive but a nice upgrade from pine.


— Open (exposed) rafter screened porch ceiling with natural wood

Low-maintenance synthetics such as vinyl or PVC — If you are looking for a ceiling material that will never require staining, painting, sanding or sealing, synthetic is the answer.

Dividing Factors

In most jurisdictions, the local building code dictates any structure or floor that is 30″ or more above grade requires a barrier, which can be a rail or knee wall. The view from your Columbia screened porch is important and if the code in your area requires an installation height of 36" or more, the rail may block your view somewhat when you’re in a sitting position. (In this case you may want to consider a knee wall instead of a rail.) Rails can be mounted either on the inside or outside of your screening. If kids and pets are part of your scenario then it is usually best to mount the rails on the inside.


— Screened porch with 24" knotty pine knee wall

Knee wall height is commonly set at 24″ — which gives you more options in terms of barrier height. In order to be completely accurate on the specified height in your area check with your screen porch builder or your particular jurisdiction for the proper code requirements regarding approved knee wall height. Both the inside and the outside of the knee wall can be trimmed to match your house. Another plus to using knee walls is that it allows space for electrical outlets. Putting outlets in a rail is much more difficult and is not attractive. Knee walls can also be finished in Ply-Bead with a wainscoting design to add style to the knee wall itself. Some homeowners take advantage of the knee wall’s improvisation benefits, for example, the top edge of the knee wall can double as a drink shelf or be used to display small decorative items.

Divider rails or posts are vertical elements of a screened structure that allow for maximum visibility and also allow for an area to “break” the screen to add more strength. This added strength is beneficial for families with small children and pets to protect the screen from damage.

To Wrap Or Not To Wrap

Wrapping the posts on your screened porch delivers a beautiful finished effect. Posts can be wrapped in a wide variety of materials including vinyl, cedar and pine, which can be painted in a color of your choice. We often recommend wrapping posts in the same material used for your knee wall to allow continuity of design. Leaving posts exposed, however, can lend a rustic and more natural effect. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and with this in mind, your posts can be finished in the medium that best suits your individual tastes.


— Columbia screened porch with PVC-wrapped posts

Choosing the most appropriate interior finishes for your new or updated screened porch doesn’t have to be difficult. With the help of an experienced porch builder like Archadeck of Central SC, planning and building your project can be an exciting experience start to finish!

Contact us today to learn more about our custom screened porches and the many ways you can make your structure truly one-of-a-kind. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

10 Things To Consider When Planning Your Columbia, SC, Screened Porch Addition

Screened porches have always been a great option for enhancing outdoor living enjoyment and they have increased in popularity even more over the last few years. Here at Archadeck of Central SC we have valuable insight and knowledge about designing and building screened porches that serve as an extension of the interior and exterior living areas.

There is such a diverse menu of materials and design ideas available for screened porches, planning one that best suits your needs and wants can be a daunting task in itself. So we have compiled a list of the top 10 musts when considering a screened porch. These are in no distinct order, but each one is important to getting the best screened porch for you!

#1 Consider Zoning Requirements

This is first and foremost in planning any screened porch or outdoor room addition. It is crucial to know the zoning requirements in your area with respect to building this type of structure. Possible HOA restrictive covenants should also be addressed before moving forward with your project.

#2 Consider Roof Style

Your screened porch roof style most likely will be dictated by the roof of your existing house and the amount of light you wish to receive within your structure. In some cases, a different type of roof from your existing home’s roof is possible and may actually look better. As your licensed screened porch contractor, Archadeck of Central SC will help you choose the roof best suited to complement your home and to your needs.

#3 Consider Your Porch Ceiling

Make sure you consider what type of interior porch ceiling you desire, such as flat or cathedral. Flat ceilings give your screened porch a more formal room feel while the cathedral (or vaulted) ceiling is open and airy. Keep in mind that the roof style and pitch can influence ceiling height options within.

#4 Consider Potential Loss Of Light

When considering a roofed addition of any kind you have to consider the potential for loss of light in your home. A screened porch may reduce the amount of natural light that enters your home. Take into consideration how much light you want within your screened porch and what means you wish to use to obtain that light. Do you want recessed lighting? Ceiling fans with lights? These are options that need to be decided prior to any electrical work. You may also consider one or more skylights if you want a tremendous amount of natural light within your screened porch to reduce the amount of light you lose within the rooms adjacent to your new addition.

#5 Consider Doors

This includes door placement and the type of door to use. When choosing door placement you want to ensure it doesn’t impede your traffic flow to and from your screened porch. We recommend an aluminum door because a wooden door may sag over time, preventing you from getting a clean seal when you use a wood door.

#6 Consider Screening

We recommend you always stay away from hand-stretched screening. It creases very easily. When it becomes time for screen replacement it will be tedious because it requires trim removal. Archadeck of Central SC uses Screeneze on our screened room projects. It creates a nice tight finish with no creasing and also makes changing out the screen easy.

#7 Consider Your Electrical Needs

This relates to how many outlets you will need and other electrical needs such as ceiling fans and the type of lighting you decide to use. Many of our customers like to install wall-mounted flat screen televisions on their screened porches. TVs may require cable and other input sources, so your electrician will need to know about these ahead of time to make preparations for you.

#8 Consider Materials For Your Porch

You must consider the materials you wish to use in your screened structure and how they look and work together. There is a huge selection to choose from. These are pressure-treated wood, composite, aluminum and vinyl to name a few. You should also consider your flooring choices, exterior materials and your interior trim. Interior trim finishes such as beadboard and wooden ceilings can add character to your structure.

#9 Consider How Your Will Furnish Your Porch

It is a good idea to have furnishings picked out or already in mind so you know what will fit. A good rule of thumb is to measure a room within your existing home to get a true feel of realistic room size in relation to furnishings.

#10 Consider Your Screened Porch Builder

Here at Archadeck, our engineers design all the structural details of how each screened porch project is to be built whereas a lot of companies let the carpenters make the decision. In the field is where theory turns to practicality and having the right contractor can ensure the integrity of your new porch and your existing home. Our goal is to provide a cohesive design that looks original. A successful project ends with a quality structure that harmonizes with all the elements of your home and landscape.

If you are ready to plan and design your screened porch or outdoor structure, give Archadeck of Central SC a call. We can make your anticipated screened porch addition effortless and worry-free from start to finish. Contact Archadeck of Central SC to get started. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Versatile, Affordable Aluminum Porch Enclosures From Archadeck of Central SC

As we move into the outdoor living season, many Central SC homeowners are ready to begin the outdoor room project they have in mind. This may be a conditioned interior addition such as a sunroom, a three season room with an interchangeable vinyl window and screen system or a traditional screened porch. No matter which type of outdoor room addition you have in mind, one thing is certain; getting the most value and versatility from your outdoor living space investment is important.

Just as we discussed in our story Everything you have always loved about a convertible is now available in our outdoor rooms, versatility and value are always a driving force when making selections or purchases geared toward enhancing enjoyment. An aluminum porch enclosure from Archadeck of Central SC can provide both when considering the options for your outdoor room addition.

You can extend the function and versatility of a new or existing screened porch by converting it into a three season room through the use of a convertible panel system such as the ones we offer with our aluminum and vinyl outdoor rooms or via our porch enclosure systems. These can be integrated into the initial design of a new porch or outdoor room addition, or added as an enhancement/upgrade to an existing structure

Our porch enclosure systems are versatile, attractive and strong. We can ensure your system is designed to match your home’s architecture and colors. Our custom made-to-order components allow you to have fun designing an outdoor space that’s just right for you. Unlike other aluminum outdoor rooms that are built using a kit, we custom design your outdoor room according to your spatial needs, roof and the interior amenities you desire.

Not only does an aluminum porch enclosure bring more value to your outdoor living space investment, they also take less time to build than traditional screened porches.This means you will be enjoying your new porch sooner, rather than later!

Contact Archadeck of Central SC to learn more today! You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Paver Patios Take Your Deluxe Outdoor Living Space To The Next Level!

Deluxe outdoor living spaces combine multiple features allowing homeowners to enjoy the outdoors however they see fit. Like each component of a fancy dinner, these living spaces (decks, porches, and more) all have individual strengths that create a tasteful collaboration when combined with one another. Columbia homeowners considering the addition of a combination outdoor space should consider the patio, specifically the paver patio, as the main course when planning their project. Here at Archadeck of Central SC, our team of experts can design and customize a paver patio to fulfill the vision you have for your hardscapes.

Paver patios open up a wide range of design possibilities like no other outdoor living structure can. Homeowners can integrate different structural elements, textures and colors in order to craft a space that brings them joy and comfort. From those looking to get their hands dirty in the garden or in the kitchen, to folks just looking for a place to soak up the sun, you can easily customize your paver patio to nurture your lifestyle.

If you have a green thumb, custom planters and retaining walls are a fantastic way to make your plants stand out, as their decorative stone look will complement your flowers’ natural beauty. Those who love to cook and entertain outdoors will enjoy a paver patio equipped with an outdoor kitchen designed with visual style and versatility in mind. Of course, with paver patios, you aren’t limited to just one feature! Your patio could include planters, an outdoor kitchen, built-in seating or retaining walls and more!

A great alternative to a paver patio is a stain and stamp concrete patio. At a more economical price than pavers, this stained concrete allows room in your budget for other elements. Take a look at the way we combined a stain and stamp patio with a stone retaining wall and custom fire pit on this project in NE Columbia:

That’s not to say a patio alone offers the best outdoor living experience. Some of the best Columbia SC Deluxe Outdoor Living Spaces creatively combine the strengths of different structures in order to deliver a beautiful and practical living space. For example, backyards with a beautiful view could really benefit from a well-designed deck. Fortunately, there are no rules that dictate you can’t have it all — a spacious deck and a beautiful paver patio!

Comparing decks, patios and other outdoor living spaces is a lot like comparing apples and oranges: at the end of the day, you’re better off enjoying both. Still, one of the reasons so many people consider paver patios is because they are incredibly low-maintenance.

Once your patio is installed, it is so easy to maintain. Often times the only thing you’ll need to do to get it ready for a get -together is sweep off any leaves that have blown onto it! Occasional cleaning will keep your paver patio looking just as beautiful as the day it was installed. We do however recommend resealing once every two-to-three years to ensure your patio stands the test of time.

Contact Archadeck of Central SC today to schedule an outdoor living design consultation and discuss creating the perfect patio for your Columbia-area backyard! Call us today at (803) 603 – 2160, or email us.

Considering a Columbia, SC, Outdoor Room Addition?

Here is What You Need to Know:

Chances are likely, if the headline above piqued your interest, you are considering the addition of an outdoor room to your Columbia-area home. You may have heard various terminology used to describe different types of outdoor rooms such as screened porches, three season rooms, sunrooms, and depending on what part of the country you hail from, four-season rooms. We realize as a homeowner, it is often hard to decipher what the differences are between the various choices. Each type of outdoor room addition is different in the benefits each provides and in their design and construction profiles. Archadeck of Central SC is here to discuss the specifics of each type of outdoor room and make choosing the right outdoor room easy!

Typically, here in Central South Carolina, outdoor rooms can be classified into three different categories. These are screened porches, 3-season rooms and sunrooms — all of which include a roofed structure.

Columbia Screened Porches

Screened porches consist of a covered porch with screened openings instead of windows. The screens serve as a barrier from bothersome insects, allergens and inclement weather. Having a screen porch gives you the opportunity to enjoy your Columbia backyard without exposure to the harsh elements. Since screened porches are roofed structures, they are also a welcome source of shade on those warm Central SC days.

Screened porches can be built using a large selection of materials. These include pressure-treated wood, ceramic tile, composite and vinyl to name a few. Interior trim finishes such as beadboard and wooden ceilings can add character and uniqueness to your structure, too.

Screened porches can also be custom designed to reflect your individual tastes. This may include integrating an outdoor fireplace or outdoor kitchen into your design. Many of our customers like to install wall-mounted flat screen televisions on their screened porches. TVs such as this will require cable hookup and electricity. Your electrician will need to know ahead of time to make preparations for you.

Columbia Three Season Rooms

Taking the ideals of a screened porch a step farther are three season rooms. This type of outdoor room is a great fit for those wanting the feel of a sunroom without the requirements of an interior room addition.Three season rooms are more fully enclosable than a screened porch because they include a four-track window system or convertible window system such as the EZE Breeze porch system. These use window panels in unison with screens by allowing you to control the amount you leave exposed. You can close completely to create a room with the feel of a sunroom without the extra installations required to have a sunroom. By pairing this enclosure system with a space heater you can make use of the screened porch beyond the typical Central SC outdoor living season, even through the winter months.

Keep in mind that three season rooms still require the use of outdoor materials, because the room is not completely weatherproof. All of the same flooring and finish options available on a screened porch would also be recommended for use in a 3-season room.

It is a common misconception that all-glass windows are required to have a bright and sunny room. As long as your porch or three season room has wide openings and is positioned well in relation to the direction of the sun, you can essentially have as bright and airy of a room as you desire.

Columbia Sunrooms

Sunroom additions consist of a conditioned space attached to the home. Being a conditioned space means it has insulation as well as heating and air conditioning. A sunroom addition requires the same construction fundamentals required of any interior room addition.


— Lexington, SC, sunroom addition by Archadeck of Central SC

Sunrooms open up a greater realm of interior finishing choices that you cannot get with other outdoor living structures. The materials available include hardwoods, wooden detailing and moldings, just to name a few. Since the use of sheetrock comes into play with a sunroom, you can use paint, faux finishes, wainscoting, and even wallpaper to show off your personal style. The possibilities are endless. A sunroom will often have a dual entry from the interior of your home as well as the exterior via a patio or porch to offer you the ultimate in convenience for indoor/outdoor entertaining.


— Imagine celebrating the holidays in your own sunroom!

Choosing an outdoor room design that is the best fit for your home’s architecture, your desired function and your budget is important. This is why consulting with an experienced outdoor room builder is crucial. Archadeck of Central SC has been designing and building custom outdoor rooms for homeowners all over the Columbia area for over 13 years.

If you are thinking about the addition of an outdoor room or another custom outdoor living space, contact us today! You can reach us by phone at (803) 603-2160, or send us an email.


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

A New Outdoor Living Space From Archadeck is the Gift That Keeps Giving!

When it comes to holiday gift giving, it is the thought that counts, right? So, why not treat yourself and your family to a gift that will keep giving for years to come with a new outdoor living space from Archadeck of Central SC.

A new deck, open or screened porch or sunroom may not classify as a traditional holiday gift, but the timing couldn’t fit more perfectly if you are considering an update to your outdoor living space in the coming months. This is because choosing to move ahead now will ensure you get the most value by locking into 2017’s pricing and the added benefit of our December special.

A Bounty of Benefits!

As is the case with any home improvement project, timing is important. Many homeowners are under the impression that outdoor structures are best to build during the warm-weather months. The truth is that Archadeck of Central SC builds year round, and anytime that best suits your circumstances and budget is the right time to build. However, there are certain advantages to moving ahead with your project during the cooler months…

Save Time — The backlog of work is generally shorter during the cooler months making it the perfect time to build. Required permit applications and HOA approvals have shorter waiting periods now, too, thus saving time in the overall project schedule.

Save Money — Prices for building materials generally increase during the early part of the 1st quarter. Many elements can influence price increases on building materials; these include fuel prices and supply and demand. The new year is the time when many manufacturers set their new pricing modules. Moving ahead with your outdoor living project now instead of waiting will ensure you are locked into this year’s pricing.

Not to mention, for a limited time, Archadeck of Central South Carolina is running a December special. We are offering $500 off any new outdoor living project totaling $10K or more or $1,000 off any new outdoor living space totaling $20K or more. In order to take advantage of this special, your contract must be finalized and signed by December 31st, 2017.

Still on the Fence?

Maybe you are ready to move ahead with a new outdoor structure, but the timing just won’t work for your budget. We understand the financial stress of the holiday season, too, and that is why we offer flexible financing options to help achieve your dream of a new or improved outdoor living space. Archadeck of Central SC offers many hassle-free financing options.

  • Lower Rates
  • Fast, Easy, Paperless Process
  • Secure and Confidential
  • More Programs Means More Choices
  • Loans and Credit Cards For All Credit Grades

The most important timing factor for your new outdoor living project is when you first make the call us to schedule your free design consultation. The sooner you start the process, the sooner your outdoor living space will be completed. Why hold off on the project of your dreams? Call today to learn more about the gift that will keep on giving, season after season, for years to come!

You can reach us by phone at (803) 603-2160, or send us an email.


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Lake Wateree Deck Builder

Archadeck of Central SC just completed this wonderful redecking project on Lake Wateree. The homeowner is elated with the outcome and we are too!

When we initially consulted on this redecking project, the homeowner’s aging pressure-treated wood deck was showing signs of exposure. Since the deck encompasses the entire rear of the home and is also used as a poolside outdoor living space, they thought it might be time to consider a low-maintenance decking upgrade.

Using the footprint of the existing deck, Archadeck of Central SC redecked the entire area with new AZEK decking. The new decking a capped polymer product engineered to last beautifully from installation throughout all the seasons in the life of your deck. This new deck will stand up to extreme weather conditions, mold and mildew and will resist stains, scratches and fading. In addition, the new decking boards will be a blessing on those in bare feet coming in from the pool because AZEK is known for its superior heat dissipation.

In addition to the redecking, we also installed new railing around the entire perimeter and a low-maintenance pergola. For the railing, we used Westbury white aluminum railing, and the pergola is aluminum as well.

Last but certainly not least, Archadeck of Central SC replaced the flooring within the homeowner’s existing gazebo (not shown) with AZEK as well.

You can see more of our incredible lakeside outdoor living spaces by visiting our Lake Murray Outdoor Living Structures page located on our website.

Learn more about increasing your outdoor living enjoyment lakeside by contacting Archadeck of Central SC today for a free design consultation. You can reach us by phone at (803) 603-2160, or send us an email.

We specialize in waterfront decks, porches, docks and much more!


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Columbia SC Screened Porch Living

When it comes to outdoor living, much like the other elements that make your home more enjoyable, the difference lies in the details. The details enhance our ability to enjoy the everyday rituals we take for granted. When it comes to porches, there is one detail in particular that can totally transform the way you use, and view, the time you spend outside - the screen.

As modest and transparent as the addition of screens may seem, screening provides a powerhouse of benefits to a porch. Screens will keep the bugs, allergens and outdoor debris at bay, and when paired with the protection of a roof, a screened room becomes an all-weather room. However, there’s more to love about screened porches than just the shelter and versatility they provide. Just imagine the way they can enhance your everyday activities.

Archadeck of Central South Carolina has listened closely to the comments from our screened porch customers, and we have compiled a list of the ways they are enjoying their outdoor rooms:

Good Morning!

A screened porch is a great place to welcome the arrival of a new day. Enjoy your morning coffee or read the newspaper on the porch. You can enjoy the fresh air and the music of songbirds and nature as it wakes all around. Depending on the placement of your screened porch, you may even be able to watch the sun rise.

We had Archadeck build a screened porch for us recently and we couldn’t be happier…Every morning when I sit out on the porch with my morning coffee, I am amazed that we have this beautiful screened porch. It is both beautiful and functional!
- Houzz review from Carol P.

Good Afternoon!

You don’t have to look far to find references of sweet tea sipping in conjunction with porch sitting here in South Carolina. You need only look on the Discover South Carolina website for a delightful example.

Porches and sweet tea—now there’s a match made in South Carolina heaven. From the fanned, ferned and wickered verandas of Southern homes, bargains have long been struck with the devilish heat by sweltering folk seeking a reprieve. In these parts, it’s tradition for such deals to be sealed with sweating glasses of sweet iced tea. Though they hail from different sides of the Mason-Dixon, porches and sweet tea crossed the line a long time ago to officially become a couple. This pairing is now a cultural, time-honored fixture at humble farm houses, majestic manors and every kind of Southern abode in-between.

Screened porches make the perfect spot to enjoy your favored cool beverage on a hot afternoon, or warm beverage when cooler temperatures arrive. Additionally, many of our projects are designed with ceiling fans to nurture the breeze on those balmy summer days and with ample room for dining outdoors — lunch anyone?

Goodnight!

Evenings spent on a screened porch make for mosquito-free outdoor living loaded with ambiance. Outdoor fireplaces are a favorite accompaniment and promise coziness and relaxation. Many of our clients also opt to add televisions to their screened porch space. Imagine being able to dine outdoors or watch movies and sports in the great outdoors!

Screened porches are also a great place to decorate and enjoy during the holidays. Whether it is Halloween, Christmas or the Fourth of July, a screened porch gives you versatile living space and more room for family and friends.

With a screened porch built by Archadeck of Central South Carolina, the joys of outdoor living are endless! Contact us today to learn more at (803) 603-2160 or via Email: [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

What's All the BUZZ About Screened Porches?

Before air conditioning became the “norm,” the screened porch was considered a necessity for many southern households as a respite from sweltering heat and humidity. The screened porch even served as a safe, cool place to rest at night. This is where the term sleeping porch came from. Over time, as different notions of outdoor rooms for all sorts of uses caught on, the screened porch’s popularity waned.

Over the past decade, the popularity of the screened porch has re-emerged. The buzz in outdoor living design is now all about ways to bring the outdoors in — and a screened porch does that perfectly! This time around, however, escaping from the heat is not the only focus. Our focus includes protection from bugs and the serious health issues they bring, especially the mosquito. Mosquitoes are responsible for West Nile Virus, Eastern Equine Encephalitis, Heartworms in dogs and cats and many more illnesses.

At least 61 different species of mosquitoes exist in South Carolina. Mosquitoes are pests that can cause itchy bites, but they can also cause serious health issues. Mosquitoes can carry harmful viruses and parasites that infect millions of people worldwide each year. Mosquito-borne diseases can cause brain inflammation (or encephalitis), birth defects, internal bleeding, complications from parasites and even death in some cases.

Second on the list of dangerous bugs are ticks. The major tick-borne diseases in the southeastern U.S. include Lyme Disease, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Southern Tick Associated Rash Illness (STARI), Ehrlichiosis and Tularemia. According to TickCheck, South Carolina had 465 confirmed cases of Lyme Disease between 2000 and 2015. However, due to the fact that the CDC’s data only represents confirmed cases, the actual quantity of Lyme Disease cases may be far greater. The site estimates a total of 4,650 true cases of Lyme disease in South Carolina, making tick-borne illness a major concern for residents.

In our endless pursuit of outdoor living enjoyment, while trying to escape the annoyance and dangers of insects, we recommend the screened porch — a functional, attractive outdoor room that allows you to feel like you’re outdoors, while safely indoors. All over the Columbia, SC, area, we are getting more and more requests for screened porches — especially in waterfront areas like Lake Murray and Lake Chapin where mosquitoes are more prevalent due to many properties’ proximity to standing water. Having a screened porch gives homeowners a variety of benefits, and having protection from insects is definitely high on the list!

Archadeck of Central SC specializes in being able to provide quality outdoor spaces for homeowners with varied budgets and lifestyle needs. We offer custom-designed screened porches along with low-maintenance, budget- friendly alternatives to traditional wood-framed screened porches.

Contact us today for a design consultation— the call and the consultation are free, but the benefits you will get from a screened porch addition are priceless! You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160, or via email at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.

Why Our Wooden Decks are Better

Archadeck of Central SC knows just how many Columbia-area homeowners still want wood when it comes to building a deck. We receive many inquiries each week about wooden decks and low-maintenance composites alike. Despite all the competition, pressure-treated wood is still the number one decking material sold today. Nearly 75% of all new decks are finished with pressure-treated lumber. We specialize in designing and building decks of various materials, including wood and synthetic, in all shapes and sizes. However, when it comes to wooden decks, it is important to know that not all wooden deck builders and wood decking boards are created equal.

We are often asked why our quote to build a wooden deck is higher than others. The answer is as complex as it is simple because there are many factors that set our wooden decks apart from others.

The first factor is the quality of the wood we use for all our wooden outdoor structures. We use lumber that is not readily available to the average handyman, builder or do-it-yourselfer from “big-box” stores. Our pressure-treated pine is quite different and is the highest quality wood available through specialty lumber suppliers. Professional deck builders, like Archadeck of Central SC, only obtain wood from selective, high-quality suppliers. This means that the wood we use is free of knots, warps and other inconsistencies evident in lower-grade pressure-treated pine. In addition, the PT pine we use has been rated for ground contact and has been treated with an Eco-life treatment that ensures better weathering of the wood itself.

Second, we don’t design and build “cookie-cutter” wooden decks. Our customized designs ensure that your deck is truly one-of-a-kind and made just for you. We always tailor your deck to the existing landscape, the character of your home and to address your needs. Each of our decks is designed with professionally-engineered blueprints, not a sketch on the back of a napkin.

Along with the integrity of having professionally-engineered blueprints, we also use building practices that ensure more stability in our deck construction. We use screws instead of nails when installing all our decking boards. This process is more timely and labor-intensive, but it ensures a stronger structure. All of our decks are built using free-standing construction which means the deck doesn’t have to rely on the strength of the tie-in location (the house) for support. Archadeck of Central SC adds extra strength by always installing the decking boards on a diagonal, unlike less-seasoned deck builders who haphazardly install boards without thinking of loads, weight or structural stability.

In addition to using only the finest PT boards and a customized deck design, we also use professional, trained crews to install and build our decks. Our crews are fully insured and covered under general liability. We maintain a minimum of $1 million in liability coverage and full workers compensation insurance (where required by law) to protect you from any possible mishaps. This brings you peace of mind when you choose Archadeck of Central SC to build your wooden deck.

Last but certainly not least, our decks are built the dedicated service of a committed and responsive local business owner/operator combined with the strength and assurances of an established national corporation. Your deck is backed by Archadeck’s written warranty for the workmanship for one year. That warranty is further backed by the National Guarantee Corporation, which guarantees that your residential outdoor living project will be completed to the terms of your Archadeck contract and built to the agreed-upon specification and a warranty of performance for up to two years. Additionally, depending on the building materials you select, manufacturers’ warranties may apply to protect you against defects in materials. And Archadeck’s intensive training and, in many cases, certification as an official installer help reinforce your confidence that those manufacturers’ warranties won’t be adversely affected by installation issues.

Simply put, no other company in the remodeling industry provides this level of client assurance and protection. When when you elect to work with Archadeck of Central SC, you can rest assured that you’ll enjoy quality construction and unmatched protections not available from any other builder in the Columbia, SC, area.


We are the premier builder of custom decks in Columbia, SC, and the surrounding region. Building custom outdoor living environments and structures is all we do, and we do it best. Our consultation is completely free. Call us to discuss your ideas at (803) 603 – 2160 or email us at [email protected].

What's Hot in Outdoor Living Trends in Columbia, SC

Here at Archadeck of Central South Carolina, we stay on our toes with regard to what our customers want. We listen carefully to our clients when they describe the design features they crave in their outdoor living spaces. In 2017, much of what we are hearing from Columbia-area homeowners is shadowing the trend forecast on a national level.

According to a recent article in Nasdaq news, “fun meets functionality” best describes 2017’s hottest outdoor living trends: “If 2016 was about blurring the lines between the indoors and out, 2017 is the year that erases it completely. The newest designs in outdoor living spaces do not simply feature the look of the indoors — but the functionality as well.”

When it comes to identifying trends in our service area, Tony, our lead outdoor living space designer, is the person to talk to. He points out that one of the most requested outdoor living projects is converting an existing wooden deck to composite. The reason for the popularity in redecking with synthetic material is simple. While people are spending more time outdoors on their decks, they are not interested in spending much of that time on deck maintenance.

Here is how the Nasdaq news article describes the trend: “Instead, their desire for comfort with functionality extends to the decking material itself. Wood alternatives, particularly wood-plastic composites, are expected to experience above average annual gains in demand through 2020. As the economy rebounds, analysts predict this segment of the decking industry will grow at a faster rate than traditional wood.”

Tony goes on to point out that outdoor room additions, especially sunrooms, are a close second to low-maintenance decks in popularity. Columbia-area homeowners are requesting open and airy outdoor rooms that serve as a conditioned outdoor escape providing cool comfort in the summer and coziness in the winter. Sunrooms also add tremendous value to your home because they increase the heated square footage of your home.

Other elements our clients find appealing include outdoor lighting for decks; gable end windows and horizontal sliding windows for outdoor room additions; and of course, cathedral ceilings to extend a sunroom’s open feel.

To learn more about choosing the perfect outdoor living space addition that speaks to your needs, tastes and budget, contact Archadeck of Central SC today at (803) 603 – 2160 or email us at [email protected].

Need more room for the holidays -- A Columbia outdoor room may be the answer

Would an outdoor room addition such as a sunroom, screened porch or 3 or 4-season room satisfy your need for more livable space for the holidays?


When a deck is not enough, consider a Columbia outdoor room addition!

Outdoor rooms provide various levels of comfort while still allowing you to enjoy the beauty and splendor of the outdoors, even during the ever-changing seasons of fall & winter. With the impending arrival of the holidays and the flurry of family and friends coming to call, wouldn’t it be nice to have additional outdoor and indoor living space? We know how “cramped” conditions can get as loved ones converge on your home. Having additional functional room for dining, relaxing or even extended holiday decorating can put your mind, and your patience, at ease.

Our large portfolio of outdoor room designs includes structures that function as additional conditioned indoor space, as well as rooms and porches that can be used for three and even four seasons throughout the year.

A sunroom

A sunroom is a room that functions as an interior room but allows you to take in the vistas of the outdoors year-round. You can enjoy a cup of cocoa from a warm and cozy nook inside your sunroom and watch the snow fall in the winter undaunted by the chill of Mother Nature. A sunroom, in essence, is an interior room with many windows. Sunrooms require the same construction fundamentals that an interior addition requires, such as HVAC systems , meaning they are insulated, heated and cooled.

Choosing a sunroom for your home opens up a greater realm of interior finishing choices than you can get with other outdoor living structures. These materials include ceramic tile, hardwoods, wood trim and moldings, and more. Since the use of Sheetrock comes into play with a sunroom, you can use paint, faux finishes, wainscoting and even wallpaper to show off your personal style. During the holidays, a sunroom or four-season room will allow you extended decorating capabilities and even provide an alternate spot to trim a holiday tree. A sunroom will often have dual entry from the interior of your home as well as the exterior via a deck, patio or porch to deliver convenience for indoor and outdoor entertaining and indoor to outdoor transition.

Screened porches and three-season rooms

The screen porch is a covered porch that has screened openings instead of windows. The screen serves as a barrier from bothersome insects and inclement weather. Having a screen porch will give you the opportunity to have an “outdoor” room without the exposure to the harsh elements. Since screened porches are shade structures because they are built under the cover of a roof, they supply superior protection from the sun, heat and inclement weather as well.

Screened porches can be outfitted with a wide range of amenities much like an interior room. Ceiling fans, recessed lighting and even a place to mount your outdoor TV have become common among homeowners building a screen porch. You can even upgrade your screen porch by adding luxurious amenities such as an outdoor fireplace or a sliding window system.

Aluminum & vinyl outdoor rooms

Aluminum and vinyl outdoor rooms you a luxury living space, are custom-made to order and designed to match your home’s architecture and colors. Unlike other aluminum outdoor rooms that are built using a kit, we custom design your outdoor room according to your spatial needs, your roof pitch and interior amenities desired.

Our convertible outdoor rooms are designed to make your porch or patio more usable year round. We offer custom made-to-order components allowing you to have fun designing an outdoor space that’s just right for you. You can use them to replace existing screened enclosures or to add a new one. These porch enclosure systems deliver the best of both worlds — screen when you want it, or a more enclosed “windowed” room when you want that, too!

Archadeck of Central SC can help you choose the perfect outdoor room addition with our helpful design team. Contact us today to learn more, and begin planning your home for holidays that can be enjoyed for years to come! You can reach us by phone at (803) 603 – 2160 or via email at [email protected].

The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu.



How does your Columbia outdoor living space rate when it comes to sheer enjoyment

Many homeowners initially—and often hastily—invest in an outdoor living space without thinking about what elements will bring them the most enjoyment. In essence, this means they don’t factor in the benefits they would like to gain from adding or enhancing an outdoor living space. This may be due to various reasons. The rationale of “putting the cart before the horse” and not considering how your outdoor space should function or flow may be due to the eagerness and excitement of first-time homeownership and finally having your own “custom” space to call your own. However…

There comes a point for all homeowners when they are ready to take their outdoor living space design to the next level. For some, that time comes when they realize they want to settle into a home and make it livable for years to come. Others reach that decision after children have grown a bit and family entertaining becomes more focused on “quality time” rather than running about. And still for others, an outdoor living structure investment comes later in life when homeowners desire to mold the home and landscape of their dreams, a refuge for relaxation and spending time with the ones they love.

Whenever this time comes for you, and you are ready to improve your outdoor space, it is important to carefully consider what you want to achieve from your investment.

The first step to enhancing your existing outdoor living space or starting anew is to use your imagination. We encourage our clients to DREAM. It may sound corny, but pretend your backyard is a canvas and your imagination is the brush. What do you want to create? Ask yourself what activities you wish to enjoy within your outdoor living space. Such as, would you like to cook and dine on the deck or patio under the stars instead of going out for date night? Do you invision spending fall evenings with the kids making s’mores or singing songs around an outdoor fire pit? If this method doesn’t help, we then suggest going indoors and look out the windows to envision what you’d like to see when you look outside. Initially, we encourage dreaming without constraints. There will be plenty of time to prioritize and set practical, workable goals, but your long-term vision will help identify the necessary steps to achieve your outdoor living dreams.

The next step is to compartmentalize. If you find it overwhelming to look at your backyard as one big void to be developed, we can help! Through our experience we have found that with many clients it may be easier to imagine your outdoor living space as several different “rooms” in the same way your indoor space is broken up. For instance, as we take notes during your initial consultation, we might document an area where you might like to have an outdoor fire pit or a built-in seating or retaining wall. Compartmentalizing the wants for your outdoor living space will prevent planning overload and make your vision more attainable. You and your outdoor living space builder can then develop a plan to bring each area to life all at once, if possible, or in stages over time as your lifestyle and budget permit.

The final step is to prioritize. If you choose to create your ideal outdoor living space over time, know that our goal is to give you the best value so as to save you money while providing the greatest lifestyle impact in the long run. For instance, if you eventually wish to add an outdoor kitchen but want to install a simple patio first, it is helpful to know where plumbing, electric and gas lines should be installed before the patio is built. “Archadeck of Central SC”: http://central-south-carolina.archadeck.com/can help you prioritize the projects in a way that will stay within your budget parameters and still give you the most immediate satisfaction.

If you are having trouble prioritizing, we can be the trusted advisor you turn to for help. We can sit down with you and help identify the key components you want out of your outdoor living space addition that will bring you the most enjoyment now and in the future!

Contact Archadeck of Central SC today to get started at (803) 603 – 2160, or via email at [email protected].



Screened Porch Considerations

Making the decision to add a screened porch is loaded with many considerations. It can be a daunting task deciding the appropriate location, placement and tie-in that will best suit your desired function. Function also plays a huge role when deciding which type of enclosure system to use on your porch. Archadeck of Central South Carolina has been servicing the Columbia, SC, and surrounding areas for over 10 years. We specialize in creating outdoor spaces that heighten the beauty and function of your backyard. Screened porches and three-season rooms are among the most popular outdoor room additions clients request.

Screened porch considerations

The popularity of screened porches spans decades and continues to increase as homeowners realize just how much benefit they add to a home, outdoor living space and lifestyle. Screened porches have also evolved past the days of flimsy screen and wooden framing with very little character. As their popularity increases, their design and the elements that go into building a screened porch have become lower-maintenance and higher-aesthetic! Traditional screen porches consist of fixed screened openings and provide protection from both insects and inclement weather. They also provide cross ventilation on those humid Carolina afternoons. Here in the Columbia area, we take these elements a step further by using a four-track enclosure system on many of our screened porch additions.

Choosing a four-track screened porch enclosure makes it possible to keep the screens and maintain the comfort. A four-track screened porch enclosure consists of windows and screens that can be used separately or together. This system allows you to open up to 75% of the window area for added ventilation and to indulge in better backyard views. This system also enables homeowners to get more use out of their screened porch for longer intervals through the changing seasons. Pollen is a constant headache here in the Central South Carolina area. Pollen not only makes you sneeze, it also leaves a yellowish-green film on all your unprotected outdoor spaces. Cleaning off the pollen in order to use your outdoor space during the spring and early summer can be quite overwhelming. A four-track enclosure will keep your outdoor room cleaner because it keeps dust and pollen outside where it belongs, and not inside your screen porch area. A four-track system still gives you protection from insects and debris, adjusts in just seconds and allows more use of your porch.

The four-track panel windows will allow you to keep the screened porch feeling. If you want to transform your screen porch into a room that you can also use year round, your porch can be completely converted to an all-season sunroom. A four-track enclosure enhances the livability of your screened room. When the window panels are closed, they provide shelter from the summer heat and inclement weather. Our four-track enclosure system is also weather-resistant and shatterproof and opens the door to endless outdoor living possibilities.

If you are interested in learning more about our screened porches, three and four season rooms including our four-track enclosures, contact Archadeck of Central South Carolina today. Call us for a free consultation (803) 603 – 2160 or email us at [email protected].


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu

When it Comes to Outdoor Living, Size Does Matter

More often than not, when homeowners are planning a deck addition for their central South Carolina home, one of the most important preliminary decisions they need to make is just how big their deck design should be. Of course the size of the structure is contingent upon a few factors, such as the budget, the amount of available space in which to build it and the anticipated uses for the deck. However, for homeowners for whom available space is not an issue, we here at Archadeck of Central South Carolina are seeing an increase in requests for larger, multi-level structures that provide more of an “outdoor room feel” than the plain, 10 × 12 builder-grade decks.

The outdoor room has grown in popularity in conjunction with the increased trend of families opting for staycations. The creature comforts of home beckon us to spend as much time enjoying our homes and property as possible, and a spacious outdoor living structure with zones similar to those inside a house will provide ample opportunities to do so. Besides, exactly how much living can we really do outside without areas for dining, sitting or socializing and of course preparing and cooking food?

According to Remodeling Magazine “the 200-square-foot deck is increasingly looking like a relic of the past as more homeowners push for more outdoor living space, and remodelers and builders are lining up to accommodate them.” Archadeck of Central South Carolina understands the desire of homeowners throughout Columbia and the surrounding areas to gain more value from their homes and property. That’s why we custom design each detail of our decks to cater to the individual functions our customers seek.

Here are 10 ideas courtesy of Remodeling Magazine to ensure the best use of space when planning your dream deck:

1) Think in layers – For the most style and versatility, a simple, flat platform just won’t do. A larger deck is more functional and aesthetically pleasing when it has curves, multiple levels, staircases, built-in seating and railings.

2) Capture the curves – Flexible composite decking allows for accentuation of the curves within a deck design and is a favorite among deck builders who are partial to curved surfaces, sidewalks and staircases, which can create an eye-catching segue between two levels of the deck.

3) Move the eye along – Built in planter boxes, fire pits or integrated seating along the perimeter will create a focal point that draws your eye. For drawing the eye upwards and extending functionality, consider adding a pergola to your deck.

4) Create drama – Accentuate curves, railings and fascia boards with a contrasting color to create a frame around the deck floor, often referred to as “picture framing.” You may also incorporate inset designs, like diamond shapes in alternate colors, to create something unique for each homeowner; these methods are often seen with composite deck designs… And don’t be shy about mixing materials on your deck: faux stone columns, a metal roof or a granite countertop within a built-in food preparation area will make the outdoor room look more upscale and custom-designed.

5) Proportions matter – Plan your outdoor space to seamlessly blend with the size as well as the style of your home. A 1,800-square-foot deck on the back of a 2,000-square-foot home is probably too big to “go” with that house.

6) Add some shade – Adding low-maintenance elements to help you get more out of your new space, like a pergola, awning, canopy or roof over the deck will allow cooking, entertaining or relaxing outdoors to continue on hot, sunny days or even when a rain shower pops up.

7) Be prepared to wait a little longer– A larger deck is typically a project that takes a little more time to complete. This is especially true if the outdoor room is full of custom features or will be home to electric or gas appliances; the job will include an electrician, a plumber and the local building inspector. If the deck includes multiple tiers, the builder might need to consult with an engineer or architect.

8) Consider the view – If the upper tier of a two-story deck is right over the lower one, take special care with the placement of the posts so they’re not too close to doors and windows, where they can block the homeowner’s view and path to the yard. Also, build in an under-deck gutter to catch rain that falls on the upper deck so it won’t soak the deck’s lower level and its inhabitants.

9) Leave enough room – Even a big deck can run out of room if the design includes a hot tub. A typical 7-by-7-foot spa takes up at least a 10-by-10-foot space so there’s enough room around it for a railing, a privacy screen or a path for bathers and maintenance technicians to walk around it in order to gain access in the event of scheduled maintenance or repairs on your spa or hot tub.

10) Make it useful – Don’t let cooler weather or darkness limit the time you spend using your deck. Include warmth and light so you can use your deck after dark and during at least three seasons. Popular options: built-in fireplaces and fire pits and ceiling-mounted heaters. You’ll have plenty of room for them.

So, as you can see, when it comes to designing the right outdoor living space, “size does matter” and your wants, needs and personal tastes play a large role in figuring out just how big your deck should be. If you are looking for a deck that delivers layers of extended function, or a deck with that outdoor room feel — then, most definitely, bigger is better!

Contact Archadeck of Central SC to learn more about our unforgettable deck and outdoor room designs today! You may call us at (803) 603 – 2160 or email us at [email protected]. Our design consultation is free, but what you gain in outdoor living enjoyment is priceless!


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu

The Right Contractor

Find a great contractor to design and build your dream outdoor living space in 7 easy steps

If you are like most homeowners, when it’s time to add a new outdoor living space or renovate your home’s existing one, you want to hire a professional you can rely on to get it done right. But exactly how do you go about finding a qualified and experienced contractor without just relying on the luck of the draw? As a leader in the outdoor living space design and construction industry, we here at Archadeck of Central South Carolina believe luck has absolutely nothing to do with it.

Your home is probably one of the largest investments you will make in your lifetime. Spending extra time to find a great contractor who specializes in outdoor living structures to work on your home will pay off in the long run. Much like there are hundreds of doctors available in our area, there are just as many contractors. However, scheduling an appointment with a veterinarian for your annual physical exam just won’t get the job done quite right. Although a veterinarian can perform physical exams, they’re qualified to perform them on animals, not humans.

There are seven basic qualities or aspects you should consider when selecting a contractor that’s just right for the job:

• Experience
• Professionalism
• Process
• Value
• Ability to Offer a Customized Product
• Attention to Detail
• Warranty & Protection

Experience

A contractor’s experience in his field directly affects your overall experience as a client. It’s essential that an outdoor living structure contractor possess the skills to manage a project and the many details involved from start to finish. Many of these skills, such as initial property assessment and designs that include structural integrity, come from years of hands-on experience working in the field of outdoor living space design and construction. A lack of experience can lead to a structure that doesn’t blend seamlessly with your home’s architectural style, isn’t structurally sound and will probably not last longer than a few years.

Be sure to ask some probing and investigative questions regarding a potential contractor’s experience, like: How many projects like yours has the contractor done? And not just the business owner, but what about the organization behind him? What experience does the supervisor and the tradesmen have? Is there a support organization behind them providing engineering and technical guidance if they get in over their heads?

Pay attention to how they answer these questions to get a good picture of their customer service skills. The answers to these questions go a long way toward determining the outcome of a project, even before it begins. In addition, a good contractor should be more than willing to give you a list of the last five projects he did so you can verify their knowledge and experience as well as their past clients’experiences.

Finally, experience means not only good technical experience and commitment to good customer service, it also means staying power. Is this their full-time career or a part-time…on the side…weekend job? A true indicator of a contractor’s future longevity is actually how long they have been in business and their true commitment to the trade.

Professionalism

By definition, professionalism means possessing the skill, good judgment and business-like behavior that is expected from a person who is trained to do a job well. No matter what service is being performed, every homeowner deserves and should demand professionalism.

Even though it’s clear what being professional means, sometimes it’s hard to determine a professional outdoor living space contractor from a builder. Don’t forget, you can stand a veterinarian and a medical doctor side by side and not know the difference without checking a few things like their licensing/credentials and insurance. Likewise, a professional outdoor living space contractor should have a high standard of knowledge and should carry proper insurance. He and his tradesmen should be properly licensed with a solid knowledge of building codes. A residential contractor’s license in S.C. takes a minimum of two years of working experience plus passing an extensive exam regarding building codes and best practices. Ask for proof of these items up front, so you can verify them.

A professional should be reliable in not only their technical commitments for the project but in communication with you as well, right from the beginning with the initial consultation. They should be competent in the construction field, following building codes and requirements and stand behind their work with the appropriate warranties. A professional will provide a finished product that you will live with every day, a pain-free construction project and the maximum value at a fair price. You can easily check for these qualities from the references a potential contractor should provide.

Processes

Adhering to a process, or series of steps in which to do something, garners consistent results, improved efficiency and higher quality work. Using checklists and procedures combined with proper planning reduces the opportunities for overlooked items and delays.

How do you know if your contractor effectively uses good processes? Start by checking their sales process and then ask during your vetting process. Find out what your contractor’s method for planning and monitoring construction will be. Do they actually use written checklists for ensuring that all steps get addressed before, during and after construction? Is there a supervisor or manager holding the crews responsible for following these processes?

At Archadeck of Central South Carolina, our careful attention to process is one of the factors that sets us apart from other builders:

• Our process begins with a free design consultation
• We then conduct a comprehensive needs analysis uncovering what you’re looking for in an outdoor living space
• Our in-depth site survey buttons down the particulars
• Our detailed photo gallery and portfolio of completed projects will stimulate your imagination
• We work with you to refine or streamline your design
• Rather than an estimate, you’re given a precise price quote
• Our quality-focused Job Process Methodology (JPM) is put into play
• Archadeck of Central SC obtains all necessary permits necessary for your project
• Once your project is started, progress almost always proceeds without lags
• Our workers respect your property
• Construction debris is removed regularly and project site is kept clean and orderly
• You approve the final structure and enjoy!

Based upon your needs and the specifics of your site, you can choose to move forward in one of two ways. With a project retainer, Archadeck of Central SC will draw up custom plans using three-dimensional drawings to illustrate your proposed structure from a variety of angles. Or, instead of developing a custom plan, you can choose to move forward in stages as part of our staged, or phased, building program. This will allow you to complete your ideal outdoor living space in stages as your lifestyle and budget afford.

Value

Providing clients with more bang for their buck makes a contractor more valuable. What types of additional services can they provide and still maintain quality? As part of the Archadeck franchise system, North America’s largest deck and porch builder, Archadeck of Central South Carolina is backed by a national network of experts. We have an established national relationship with several preferred material vendors and gladly share our expertise in form and function to create the perfect outdoor living environment just for you.

Ability to Offer Customized Product

You should expect that a full-service contractor will add value in helping you design your own unique outdoor living project. You should be able to see him in action during the design phase, before you make a decision to commit to a contractor to build your project. He should point out smaller features you may not be aware of that will enhance the project without adding major costs. If you don’t have a warm, fuzzy feeling that he is thoughtful, considerate of your ideas and responsive, then now is the time to move on to someone else. But if he takes care of you during the early stages of the project, then odds are good that you will be able to work well with him to bring the job to completion and that you’ll have the custom-built outdoor living space of your dreams.

Attention to Detail

A high-quality contractor increases their level of thought and effort for defining the details of a project to help make it unique. Sometimes the only way to determine a contractor’s attention to detail is to look at his work and compare it to the work of others. If you don’t have an experienced eye for noticing these details, your prospective contractor should be able to easily and proudly point them out to you. But I bet that you can tell by looking at some examples of projects if they display the style and touches that you expect, even if you can’t put your finger on exactly what those touches are.

Warranty and Protection

The warranty serves as the back-up plan for a consumer if things don’t go right with the builder. This applies to major problems in having the project completed (unscrupulous contractors have been known to walk away from a job when it gets difficult or too expensive to make things right), or may apply to things that come up after the job is done and the contractor has been paid.

A warranty is important because it outlines in advance what the builder is and isn’t willing to do to fix problems after the fact. Without a warranty, the homeowner still has certain protections under the laws regarding implied warranties. However claims under these laws require the homeowner to file a legal claim, and can be time consuming and expensive, not to mention stressful. A homeowner’s best protection regarding warranty issues is to use a builder that is stable and has a good reputation.

Archadeck of Central South Carolina is backed by a warranty that covers the entire project (meaning that we will fix anything that’s not right) for one year, and further covers structural issues (foundations, integrity of framing, roof leaks, etc.) for a period of five years. In addition, Archadeck actually provides a guaranteed insurance program that covers customers if the local Archadeck office cannot complete a project due to death, illness or going out of business. In this event, the Archadeck corporate office will pay to have the project completed by another Archadeck location.

The Proven Choice

Although checking these seven aspects of a contractor doesn’t guarantee that you will find the perfect contractor, they do help you narrow down the playing field in order for you to more easily identify a top-notch contractor, like Archadeck of Central South Carolina. We can help you create the outdoor living space of your dreams that seamlessly blends with your home’s existing architectural style. Contact Archadeck of Central South Carolina today at (803) 603-2160 or via email at [email protected]


The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu

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