January is upon us and with it come many resolutions most of us are making. For many of us, sprucing up our homes and backyard will become the focus for this new year, in the hope to also raise the value of the home. If home renovations are part of your plan, consider adding a multi-functional outdoor living space in time for Spring and the warmer months. Spending more time outdoors is a great way to boost your health and reduce your stress level, two things most likely to be on your to-do list as well!
5 steps to get your project started
Think about how you will use this new space. Are you looking to add a entertainment room for your family? Do you host often and need to accommodate a large crowd for dinners alfresco no matter the weather? Are you looking to design a Zen spot by your pool for total relaxation? Do you want your own yoga studio attached to your home? Once you have identified the main purpose for this pergola is, you are able to start designing it.
2. Style of your house
Taking in consideration the style and architecture of your home is pivotal to ensure that the design of the outdoor structure is aligned well with it. Whether the architecture of your home is colonial, contemporary or a cape cod, make sure the pergola suits it. Most aluminum structures are available in a wide array of colors, making it easier to blend with your home. Your pergola should enhance the overall look and add value.
3. Type and design of structure needed
The third step in your project is to decide the type of outdoor living space adapted to your needs. If you are looking to add a fully functional living space, a louvered roof with sliding panels all around is perfect for you. It will allow you to either let the breeze and sunshine through or create a private space, ideal for working, relaxing or watching the latest Netflix series. Need a patio cover for your weekly dinners? Think about coupling aluminum pergolas or awnings to cover the entire area. Just want to get that spa feeling? Set up a small cabana with flowy curtains and start savoring your free time. One final element to consider is whether your structure will be freestanding or attached to your home.
4. DYI vs Custom-Made
Now that you established why and what you need, here comes the biggest decision. Do you feel ready to tackle a DYI pergola project or would prefer to work with a designer to create the outdoor oasis you are dreaming of. If DYI is the way for you, here are a few elements to take in consideration:
- Understand the frost depth in your area: your support beam will need to be below that frost level
- Check if you need a permit for your pergola: Go to your local townhall and understand what is needed in order to get the project going
- Check your local utilities: double check there is no utilities lines below ground level where you are building this pergola
- Choose your materials: There are many types of wood out there, each with their own qualities and properties. Choose the one most adapted to your local climate. Additionally, there are ready-to-assemble pergola kits in vinyl, aluminum and fiberglass which will last longer.
- Choose your sun and rain protection: When building your own pergola, carefully design your roof taking into consideration average rainfall and shading needed so you are able to use it a maximum of days throughout the year.
If a DYI pergola kit scares you and custom-made is the better option for you, partner with a landscape designer or your local pergola installer to create the perfect outdoor space for you.
Finally, as you get underway with your outdoor living project, always keep your budget in mind. The cost of materials, installation and potential accessories will greatly influence your final budget. Also research the cost of maintenance as some materials, such as aluminum are relatively low-maintenance and longer lasting, making them a better long-term investment. But don’t worry, there is a pergola solution for every budget!
In conclusion, today is the perfect day to get started on your outdoor living project! Choosing the right structure is central to creating the perfect space for your home. From choosing the right location to the type of materials and shading, adding a multi-functional living space will always increase the value of your home. Not sure where to start? Contact one of our dealers today and let them guide you with the process.