Adding a Screen Porch To Your House

Adding a Screen Porch To Your House

As amazing as the great outdoors can be, from a practical aspect, it can have its drawbacks. 

To begin with, if you are looking to enjoy the scenic views and bask in the warmth of the sun’s rays, you are going to have to deal with bugs, insects, and other creepy crawlies. Then of course, there’s the weather. In the summer it’s not too bad, (other than the bugs) but what about during the colder fall and winter months? You could brave the wildlife and the elements and sit outside, or you could have a screened porch installed at your home instead. 

A screen porch, sometimes known as a screened porch, or a screened room, is a great alternative to a sunroom that is generally considered more affordable. Typically built on the exterior of a house, it is a porch with posts and windows and/or screens fitted to help add protection from insects and the elements. It essentially allows people to feel much more comfortable when sitting on their porch and enjoying the view. 

If you’re thinking of having one fitted, here are some handy tips for adding a screen porch to a house. 

Ensure You Can Get Planning Permits

One of the biggest headaches that homeowners will encounter when it comes to screen porch installation, is getting planning approval. 

A screen porch is not a small construction. It’s not like fitting a new mailbox and consequently, you’re going to need building permits. Members of Homeowners Associations are also encouraged to submit their plans to those as well. 

Because screened porches are considered home extensions, you will need to receive writing permission to ensure that the porch fits in with the rules and regulations of the guidelines for your neighborhood. 

Failing to obtain the necessary documentation and approval could result in a lot of unnecessary stress, work, and expense that you could do without. 

Look for Inspiration

Okay, so, assuming you have been granted a building permit with no issues, the next thing you need to do is start looking for inspiration. 

A screen porch should be a warming, comfortable, relaxing space for you and your loved ones to enjoy. You therefore probably don’t just want a soulless box with flimsy mesh screens for windows. Not only will this not look appealing, it’ll also likely get too cold in winter. 

You could look for inspiration online when designing a screened porch, or if you hire a professional, they may be able to design one for you. 

When talking about design, we’re not just talking about the shape and size, but things such as which materials to use, how much light you want to let in, whether you need any privacy, access, skylights, color schemes, etc. 

Don’t Forget Your Furnishings

While designing the basic shell of a screened porch is important enough, you should also not underestimate the importance of selecting the correct furnishings either. 

Remember, this isn’t just a primitive shelter for you to sit in when you want to enjoy the views in bad weather, this is an extension of your home. You wouldn’t redecorate a room and leave it bare, so why would you do this with a screened room? 

After you’ve designed the basic outline of your screen porch the fun can begin. Now you can begin searching for furnishings to give the room a homely, warming, relaxing, welcoming feel. 

Things like rugs, flooring, lamps, wall art, color schemes, fans, pictures, furniture, curtains, and ornaments can all make a huge difference when it comes to the overall ambience of the room itself. 

Do You Need Power?

Although not a necessity, most people agree that a screen porch needs a suitable power supply. Therefore, make sure to factor this into the equation before construction begins. 

Needless to say, when dealing with power and electrics, unless you are qualified to do so, you must leave this to the experts. Failing to do so is not only dangerous, it could also void your insurance in the event of an emergency, plus it could result in legal problems as well. 

By installing a power supply to your screened porch, you not only get light, but you can also use electrical appliances in there such as TVs, games consoles, fans, or entertainment systems. 

Will It Be Warm Enough?

Unless you happen to live in a particularly warm part of the country, chances are that for a few months of the year at least, a screen porch with no heating supply will be too cold to enjoy in winter. 

If you’re planning on enjoying a screen porch in the winter, it’s worth ensuring you can have an adequate source of heat. Again, if you hire a professional, they will likely be able to provide you with a suitable HVAC system. 

The great thing about having a HVAC system installed is the fact that you can also use the AC. Screened porches can get very hot in the summer, so getting a source of air con in there is well worth doing. 

Decide on Materials

Of course, when building anything, you need to decide what kind of materials you want. 

As well as selecting the wood for the frame construction, you’re going to have to decide what kind of screens you want. The screens found in screen rooms come in a variety of different materials, with each one offering its own unique benefits and drawbacks. 

Typically, you’ll find screen fabric materials coming in the form of fiberglass or aluminum, though there are solar screens which can reduce UV exposure from direct sunlight. 

Decide on a Budget

Finally, when it comes to adding a screen porch to a house and its cost, you’re going to need to set yourself a budget before construction can begin. 

So, how much do screen porches cost? Well, the answer to that question of course varies depending on size, design, materials used, construction company used, and so on.

To give you a very rough idea of how much it costs, however, you can expect to pay anything from $25 - $120 per square foot. See? That shows you just how much the price can vary. Nevertheless, once you have a rough idea of price, you can then decide whether it fits your budget. 

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