Decks are a challenge to any inspector. From older decks that are decaying to newer decks that have not been built properly, we routinely find problems. Many decks are poorly constructed and poorly maintained. As a result, decks can collapse. While collapses are not frequent, in my opinion they do occur too often. A properly constructed and maintained deck should last 30 years. Decks framing should consist of lumber that has been pressure-treated to resist wood- destroying organisms. Exterior hardware should be manufactured to be corrosion resistant (most chemicals used to treated lumber are corrosive).
Any attachment to the house should support the deck, resist seismic movement as well as provide some provision to prevent water from damaging the home. Railings should be constructed to help prevent falls.
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