For warm-weather relaxing and entertaining you can’t beat a screened in porch. Plus, screened in porches add three-season outdoor living space and square footage to your home. Sit outside and enjoy cool breezes with these screened in porch ideas.
How to Decide Between an Open Porch or a Screened Porch
If you’re building a new porch or upgrading an existing one, you may be wondering if a screened in porch is right for you. Both open-air porches and screened in porches have their advantages.
Open Air Porch Positives
If you enjoy views of your garden and yard from your porch, an open design will ensure that you’ll be able to see clearly without anything obstructing the view.
An open porch also provides a designated space for outdoor grilling.
Open porches require less maintenance – no torn screens or worn parts to replace, which saves money too.
Furthermore, it’s less expensive to build an open porch compared to a screened in porch.
Screened In Porch Positives
If you live in the country or suburbs, a screened in porch is essential to keep critters, large and small, from nosing their way inside. The screening will prevent mosquitoes and other bugs from getting in, so you’ll be able to enjoy your outdoor time comfortably.
Unlike an open porch, a screened in porch provides protection from the rain and hot sun – you’ll be able to spend more time outdoors.
A screened in porch offers more protection so you can add most creature comforts – lighting, television, ceiling fan, upholstered furnishings, etc.
If you live on a busy street, a screened porch can feel more enclosed, safe, and private.
Read more screened in porch ideas here.
Will a screened in porch add value to my home?
The short answer is, yes! Outdoor structural improvements are one of the best ways to improve the resale value of your home. Homeowners should see an approximate 75% return on investment when adding a screened in porch.
Here are a few tips on getting the best ROI for screened in porch ideas and projects –
Be Budget Minded
If you build a moderately priced, screened in porch of pressure-treated wood you’ll see close to a 75% return. A high-end porch crafted of expensive materials and fancy features may look great, but the ROI will be 50% or lower.
Consider the Climate
If you reside in an area where screened in porches are popular and enjoyed several months of the year, adding one is a good investment. But if you live in a northern climate that experiences short summers or cold nights, you may want to reconsider the investment.
Although fancy finishes and add-ons look great, one of the most important factors when considering porch ROI is the overall square footage. Plenty of floor space is preferable to fancy flourishes.
Bug-free, a Necessity
What are home shoppers looking for in a screened in porch? One of the chief concerns is if the screens enclose the porch properly, to keep bugs at bay. Install small-grid screening and seal floorboards to keep insects away.
Electricity is optional
Keep in mind – adding electrical outlets and wiring the porch for lighting will add to the price, but won’t up your home’s resale value.
To find out what home shoppers are looking for in a screened in porch, give a real estate professional or home builder a call.
To learn more screened in porch ideas, visit here.
Convert an Existing Covered Porch to a Screened In Porch
If you have an open porch with a roof and wood floor, you already have the structural ‘bones’ needed to build a screened in porch. Before you start, check with your local government about existing building codes. Being familiar with local building codes can assist you in making decisions concerning the best materials and construction for your outdoor project.
What You’ll Need
- Wood two-by-fours
- Metal or fiberglass screening (sold in standard 48-inch and 36-inch widths)
- 3-inch wood screws and electric screwdriver
- Metal tape measure
- Staple gun and staples
- Utility knife
Step 1 – Cut the Frame Sections
Measure the open porch areas you wish to cover. A rectangular frame should be made the same width as your screen material, and as high as your porch post. Cut frame pieces from wood two-by-fours. To add stability, cut an extra section to fit inside the frame, horizontally. Assemble the frame sections with 3-inch wood screws.
Step 2 – Attach Screening
Cut sections of screening with a utility knife. Lay the screen over the frame. Pull the screen taut, working from the center out and staple. Continue stapling around the frame holding the screen tight to eliminate any waves or loose areas. Lastly, trim extra screen with a utility knife. For a neater look, cover the staples with strips of wood trim.
Step 3 – Hanging the Frames
Hold the first frame up against a corner post, placing it so the bottom sits against the porch floor and the edge is next to the vertical post. Set a level at the side of the frame to check that the frame is plumb. Screw the frame bottom to the porch and the frame side to the post. Continue attaching frames to the porch until all are in place. For extra stability, screw the frames together at the sides.
Step 4 – Flooring
If your porch floor is made up of wood sections with gaps, you may want to cover the floor. A weather-resistant carpet or floor covering is attractive and soft, underfoot. Attach the carpet to the floor with double-sided carpet tape – no carpet pad required. If you have a large floor, attach carpet sections with carpet tape. Another option is a deck tile floor. Deck tile floors are great for DIYers as they can be installed over most hard surfaces – concrete, wood, brick, etc. Flexible tiles easily snap together over your existing floor – they can be easily moved, modified or extended. For extra info on converting an open porch to a screened in porch, click here.
A screened in porch is a good bet for homeowners. It’s an outdoor remodeling project that adds usable, enjoyable floor space to your home. It’s a win-win should you decide to sell later on.
Learn more warm weather home décor tips here.