Deck Safety at Your Vacation Rental Property

    deck safety for cabin rentalsA deck is one of the top amenities for vacation properties in both cold and warm-weather destinations.

    Sadly, poorly built and unmaintained decks can cause unnecessary injuries and even death. Without proper installation and regular inspection, your outdoor living area can turn into a potential disaster. It is important to check the credentials and experience of your deck builder and ask to see samples of the materials they use.

    When building a deck, there is more to consider than price and aesthetics. Beyond the installation and maintenance, decks can also sag or collapse simply because of age, corroded materials or exceeding capacity. Your deck inspection should provide information as to the weight limits for your personal deck, along with general things to keep an eye on. If your vacation home is in a location with a harsh winter, snow and ice can even cause distress to certain areas of your deck.

    According to, there are five warning signs for a dangerous deck:

    • Loose connections (e.g. a wobbly railing)
    • Missing connections (e.g. the deck is just nailed to the side of the house)
    • Corrosion
    • Rot
    • Cracks
    For more specific deck-safety guidelines, consult the North American Deck and Railing Association's Check Your Deck – 10 Point Safety Checklist.

    With proper deck construction and regular inspections and maintenance, you can help ensure the safety of your family and your guests for years to come.

    © Copyright HomeAway, Inc. 2008

    Updated: November 6, 2009