Your porch is an extension of your home. In some areas, having your porch screened in offers a much-needed reprieve from the natural elements in your area. If you’re thinking of transforming your porch into a screened-in porch, here are some things to keep in mind.


Along with any other type of home improvement project, creating a screened-in porch may change the value of the home in the eyes of the local building division. Make sure you run design plans by them and obtain any permits and inspections required by the county.


Your existing deck or porch is the foundation for your screened-in porch, so make sure it is in good condition before building up. If your wood decking needs some love, now is the time to do it. Sand if necessary, replace any rotting or cracked boards, improve foundation support, and give it a fresh coat of stain. It will be a lot easier at this phase than later on in the project. Similarly, if your concrete patio needs crack repair or a sealer added, make that the first step in the process.


If your deck already has a roof than you probably have some sort of beams or partial walls to work with when enclosing the space. However, if you don’t have a pergola or roof, you will need to build one, beginning with the supports. Typically, corner posts set well into concrete or mounted to the deck at all four corners are enough to support the weight of a basic roof. For more intricate designs, such as a peaked trellis roof, you will want to consult with a structural engineer or professional contractor to make sure you’re providing the proper structural support. Also include at least one door in the wall design. Since you will otherwise be enclosing the porch, the door will allow you access to the yard.


In conjunction with your blueprint for the walls, you’ll need a roof to enclose the space. This is also what protects you from the beating sun and the pouring rain. Consider the slope of the roof if your area receives significant snow or rainfall. Also think about adding gutter systems to divert the water off of the roof and into the drainage system without gushing over the sides of your porch. Decide whether to match the roofing material of the main house or cover the porch in a different material.

Read more: