Patios, Verandas, And Covered Porches: Explaining Differences So You Buy The Right One

Structures created for you to sit outside and enjoy some fresh air go by many names. Some people would assume that all the names apply universally to these structures. However, there are differences among a patio, a veranda, and a covered porch. If you want to add such a structure to your home, it helps to label it correctly so that your contractor builds the correct structure.

A Patio

A patio is usually a flat concrete surface just off of the back door of your home, or off the side of your home with patio doors that provide access to it. It is not anything really extraordinary, but you can put outdoor furniture on it, as well as potted plants, a picnic table, a grill, etc. It is just a nice place to sit, grill out, entertain a few guests, and for whatever else you want to use a patio. Installing a patio is as simple as leveling the ground and pouring a concrete slab. If you want to put a canopy over it for shade, you can do that as well.

A Veranda

A veranda, by definition, is an outdoor structure attached to any side of your home. It has its own roof, and often has a few walls enclosing the space as well. It may be enclosed entirely to act as another family room or den. Because it is not heated and you can exit outdoors from the veranda, it is neither a true room nor a porch.

Covered Porches

Covered porches are similar to verandas in that they have their own roofs. However, a covered porch is usually only screened in to allow free flow of the outdoor air. It is not something you want to sit in during winter as it is too cold for that. There is always an exit from the house into the covered porch area, and another exit that leads outside. The screened areas allow you to see all around you and in front of you. The porch may also wrap half way or three quarters of the way around a house, depending on the style and size of your home.

One More Structure Defined

Before you forget, there are also decks. Decks are like patios, except that they are made of wood and are elevated above ground level to meet the level of the exit door(s) on your home. They can be used either to encircle a pool, or just as "patio" space too. 

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