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Turn Your Porch Into a Sunroom for Year-Round Use

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Everyone enjoys an open porch in warm weather. It provides an extra space in the open air that is unmatched my patios or decks. It shades you from the sun and protects you from the rain. Some porches have a hanging swing or a hammock for maximum relaxation. But when the weather turns cold, an open-air porch can lose all its appeal and doesn't get much use until the weather warms up again. Enclosing your porch and turning it into a sunroom is a compelling option for porch-enthusiasts who want to add square footage to their house and enjoy the many benefits of a porch all year round.

Because much of the porch structure is already in place, turning it into a sunroom is a pretty uncomplicated project. Most of the time, depending on your specific porch, all that is required are installing some windows, adding insulation and possibly providing some extra heat -- either through your home's existing furnace or adding a wood or gas fireplace. For maximum energy efficiency, use double-pane, low-e, tempered window glass.

A sunroom is ideal for entertaining guests, relaxing and adding to the resale value of your home. They can be a variety of styles and designs, including sloped roofs, gable roofs, solarium-style curved glass roofs and Victorian-style conservatories with glass or polycarbonate roofs. A sunroom addition can add more light to a home that might not have a lot of southern exposure. The extra ambient light can make a smaller home appear larger.

Adding a sunroom costs less than a conventional household addition, and can be built where local building codes and zoning ordinances restrict backyard additions. Because of the financial and usage benefits, sunrooms are a popular amenity requested by potential homebuyers. Homes with an appropriately designed sunroom are likely to sell faster and for more money than those without. Usually, a sunroom addition is not considered to be a square footage addition to your home. Check the local ordinances to be sure.

Sunrooms give a sensation of being outdoors while providing indoor comforts. They can be the perfect place for a hot tub, an exercising / recreation room, a child's play room, a home office, or a peaceful, relaxing spot to unwind with a good book. Many sunroom owners plant bushes and flowers around their enclosure to enjoy nature from the comfort and protection of their sunroom.

Create a sunroom that will add to the architectural beauty of your home. It can save you money on your energy bills, create extra space, increase the overall value of your house, add striking natural light to your home, and bring you closer to the environment and surroundings in which your family lives.

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Matt Oliver
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