If you want to start entertaining in your backyard but don’t know where to start, consider investing in a porch, deck, or patio first. These structures help divide the yard in a functional way so you know where to entertain and relax versus where kids or pets can play.
However, these options have a variety of pros and cons that you need to consider before making a final decision. We’re here to help you hone in on your backyard priorities and choose the structure that makes the most sense for you and your family.
Read on to learn all about whether to choose a porch vs deck vs patio!
Know the Differences
Before you make your final decision on what’s best for your home, it’s important that you know the difference between these three types of backyard structures. Here are a few details to keep in mind:
Porches are shelters that protrude from the exterior of your home and are typically covered. They may also be enclosed by walls or open to the elements on all sides for a closer view of nature.
Porches can be flexible depending on your needs. For instance, if you want to spend a lot of time on your porch but want more privacy, you can choose to have a back porch instead of a front porch.
You also have the option of building a detached porch that’s similar to a gazebo. This is a great option if you have a large yard and want to take advantage of the space that you have.
Lastly, you can also choose a screened porch in order to cut down on the insects you’ll experience. These porches are also a great option if you have cats and want them to experience the outdoors with supervision.
Decks are platforms without a roof or enclosing walls that are typically connected to the house. Elevated from the ground, decks make it easier to place furniture outside in order to cook, entertain, and relax.
Although most decks are uncovered, you still have the option of covering them with a pergola in order to enhance its appearance and supply some shade.
Decks also don’t have to be connected to your house. For instance, a detached, multilevel deck can be perfect if your backyard has several elevations, hilly areas, or rocky terrain. Decks also come in a variety of materials, such as:
- Pressure-treated wood
- And more
When it comes to deck ideas, you can also choose to install a wraparound deck. This creates a seamless transition between the inside and outside.
If you want a more simple area where you can enjoy the outdoors in good weather, then consider installing a patio. Patios are paved outdoor areas that adjoin the house for entertaining or dining.
Although this is one of the most straightforward methods of creating an outdoor entertaining space, you’ll want to choose furniture that can stand up to inclement weather over time, as they’ll be exposed to the elements.
Patios are typically paved with concrete, asphalt, pavers, and natural stone. The wealth of options available to you means that you can create a patio that fits perfectly with the exterior of your home. You also have the option of bordering your patio area with flowers, bushes, or small trees in order to create a more intimate space.
Consider Your Priorities
Now that you know the difference between porches, decks, and patio, you’ll want to consider your own priorities for your family.
For instance, if you live in the South and spend most of the year suffering in the heat, one of your priorities is probably to add some ample shade to your backyard.
With this in mind, you’ll want to choose a screened-in porch, possibly adding a fan overhead to help it feel cooler.
On the other hand, if you’re on a budget and want a simple solution for an outdoor space, consider installing a patio. You can even stretch your budget by using affordable materials such as concrete or gravel versus more expensive pavers.
If you want to add a porch, deck, or patio to increase the value of your home, focus more on what would look the most natural and cohesive for the exterior of your home.
For instance, a wraparound deck may not make sense if you don’t have a lot of backyard space. However, a quaint front porch may add more character to your home and make it look more appealing to buyers’ eyes.
Porch vs Deck vs Patio: Consider Your Priorities
When it comes to choosing the best entertaining and relaxing space for your backyard, you’ll first want to consider your own priorities. You’ll first want to decide on your budget as well as your needs for our family, such as entertaining, relaxing, or enjoying the shade.
Next, consider structures that would work best for your home. For instance, a detached porch may not make sense if you don’t have a lot of backyard space, but an attached, screened-in porch would.
Decks can also be a benefit if your backyard is full of rocky, uneven terrain. This can open up the useable space in your backyard while also making it safer to traverse with a combination of stairs and decks.
Lastly, choose a patio if you’re on a tight budget but still want a comfortable entertaining space. You also have the addition of adding pergolas in the future in order to acquire some shade.
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