Whether the focal point of the yard or simply a highlight in the existing landscape, freestanding decks are yet another way to gain outdoor living space. They can be welcome additions when the house configuration precludes an attached deck or when the ideal location -- a grove of trees, near a stream, or overlooking a garden -- is some distance away. A freestanding deck is an ideal way to dress up a drab, previously ignored corner of the yard by transforming it into a secluded retreat for reading, a lively play area for children, or a stage for displaying colorful pottery and plants.
Although the term freestanding may suggest a flimsy or temporary solution, stand-alone decks are usually permanent fixtures that adhere to the same structural requirements as other deck types. A design may be as simple as a low-level platform floating just above the ground or as complex as a multilevel system of platforms and connectors that climb up or down a slope or stretch across the yard. Plain or fancy, however, detached decks can offer outdoor living at its best.