Can You Put a Screened-in-Porch Under a Deck?
Expanding the outdoor living space of your home is one of the most significant investments you can make, both financially and emotionally! Not only are annexations smart but building your house out into the outdoors gives you more chances to experience the seasons. Many people construct new decks to extend into their backyards, which work well for spending time outside with friends and family in the spring, summer, and fall months.
However, you might not always want to deal with the full spectrum of what comes with lounging around outside. Bugs, the hot beating sun — sometimes it’s a little too much, and you just want to enjoy the fresh air. A screened porch presents the perfect balance between outdoor relaxation and indoor comfort by protecting the space from the elements and acting as a buffer.
A two-story deck can present the perfect opportunity to do so! Like a front porch, with all the freed-up space underneath, a screened porch is ideal for bridging the gap between outdoors and indoors and utilizing your newfound resource!
What is a Screened-in-Porch?
A screened porch takes the warmth of outdoor space and adds a layer of protection from mosquitoes and other pesky bugs by closing off the holes with screen fabric. It can be a great place to read a book on a summer evening, and with proper installation, it will add to the overall value of your home. A screened porch is typically constructed by adding screens to an already covered outdoor porch, but a two-story deck with an under-deck ceiling also works great for a screened porch project!
How Do You Build a Screened-In Porch Under a Deck?
To screen an existing covered back porch under a deck, you’ll need the lumber to build screen panels, the screen fabric itself, screws for securing, and paint to finish off the project and match the color to the trim of your house. Of course, you can hire professionals to complete the installation, which will guarantee a high-quality job, but if you’re feeling confident and ready to save a buck, a DIYer can easily do the job.
Many home improvement stores and websites have screen room kits available that include everything you’ll need to complete the project. Your typical 8-foot-by-10-foot kit sells for around $250-300 and is easily installed over a weekend.
You’ll need to attach the screen frames to your existing deck posts or walls. The project can be low budget if the upstairs deck space is already in place. However, if you need to do additional construction, your costs will rise into the thousands. Most likely, you will need to contract with a professional to get the job done. So, if your home already has a covered area or porch, all you’ll need are the screen frames to start your screened porch project!
How Do You Put a Screen Under a Deck?
Once you’ve got all your materials together, it’s time to start the installation. Begin by making a plan: you can pull the screens taught across the areas you’re trying to cover and mark the spots where the screws will go to hold the frames in place. Keep in mind that you can trim your screens to fit smaller areas if necessary, but you can’t combine them to create a larger frame. Therefore, be very intentional with how you plot the space. Once you secure the frames, roll the screens out and attach them. Now you have a new bug-proof porch!
How Much Does It Cost to Turn a Deck into a Screened-In Porch?
To put a screen on an existing covered porch on a 200 sq. ft. deck can cost about $450, including the lumber for the screen panels and the fasteners to keep it in place. If you hire a professional, you can expect to add $300 to $600 in labor costs to the estimate.
Of course, the smaller the area, the less you’ll have to spend on building materials and construction costs. However, the material of your screens will also affect your overall costs. Pre-cut screens are the most affordable, but they can also include additional features such as wind resistance and allergy resistance, increasing the price. Some of the screens available are fiberglass, aluminum, premium metals, and sun-blocking. Fiberglass is the cheapest option but not the best in terms of quality. To ensure the longevity of your porch’s interior, investing in screens that keep bugs, dust, pollen, and UV light out of your space is the best way to go.
Keep in mind that you’re essentially building an outdoor space that you want to keep as well-protected from the elements as an indoor space. Going cheap on materials to stay within a specific budget may seem smart, but it might lead to a premature degradation in quality. If you’re hesitant about taking on a project like this, it might be better to contract with an architect or contractor to get professional advice. Then, even though it’ll cost some extra money, it’ll be worth the investment to have your screened porch last a long time.
Tips for a Successful DIY Screened-In Porch
- Do your homework on local ordinances, regional codes, and restrictions before you start building. Adding a screened porch can increase your property value and, therefore, your real estate taxes.
- Square footage will affect how much your project costs. The smaller, the less expensive the project will be.
- Opt for outdoor furniture that can withstand being outdoors all year long instead of buying more expensive, upholstered fabrics.