Building a Multi-Level Deck

Reference Number: KB-01240
Last Modified: July 21, 2021

The information in this article applies to:

Home Designer Professional or Home Designer Architectural or HomeDesigner Suite


I would like to build a deck with multiple levels.  How do I do this?

Camera view of back of house with three deck areas connected by stairs where middle deck is lowered


Building a multiple level deck is an easy process in the Home Designer programs.

In order to make this design successfully, you may want to learn about creating a sloped landscape for your terrain (not available in Home Designer Essentials or Home Designer Interiors).  For more information on that process, please see the Article Modeling a Sloping Terrain for a Walk-out Basement as referenced at the bottom of this article.


In this example you will be begin by creating a building that is 45' x 30'

Once you've got your structure built on the sloping terrain, it is time to add the decks to your plan.

To build the multi-level decks

  1. Use the Build> Railing and Deck> Straight Deck Railing tool and click to drag out a deck railing, creating several decks as shown in the image below.

    Floor plan view showing three deck areas drawn on side and back of house with a gap between the decks

    Note: Be sure to keep all three decks separate.

  2. Once your decks have been placed, use the Select Objects  tool to click inside of the room that makes up Deck 2.

  3. Use the Open Object edit button to display the Deck's Room Specification dialog.

  4. On the Structure panel, set the Floor height to -21" and click OK to save the change.

    Room Specification dialog with -21 inches entered for Floor value

  5. Next, select Build> Stairs> Straight Stairs  and click where the two decks meet to have Home Designer draw a small set of stairs going up from the lower deck to the upper deck.

    Floor plan view with stairs placed in Deck 2 facing each of the other two decks

  6. Now, use the Select Objects tool to select the top Deck Railing on Deck 1, then, using its Move edit handle, click and drag it until it bumps against the bottom railing of Deck 2.

  7. Follow this same procedure for the space between Decks 2 and 3, so that your plan should look similar to the image below.

    Floor plan view with gaps removed between the three deck areas

  8. With the left deck railing of Deck 3 still selected, click on the Open Object  button to open the Railing Specification dialog.

  9. On the General panel, check the box next to Invisible. then click OK to apply the change.

    Railing Specification dialog showing Invisible selected under Options

  10. Repeat this process for the upper deck railing for Deck 1 that you moved to bump in to Deck 2, so that both railings are set to Invisible.

  11. Next, use the Select Objects  tool to select a stair section, then click to drag it the length of the deck, as shown in the image below.

    Floor plan view showing stairs resized to width of upper decks

You are now ready to continue customizing the design, or take the information that you have learned in this article and apply it to your own plan. As you can see, creating multi-level decks is an easy process that can create some great looking homes!