How Much Does a Screened in Porch Cost?
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The cost of a screened in porch will greatly vary since each situation will be so different.
How much is it?
- On average, a complete screened in porch that has to be custom built can cost anywhere from $7,000 to $25,000, depending on the size and other factors, something we get into later. Experts will state that most jobs will be within the $55 to $95 per square foot range. The costs will greatly depend on where you live, the types of materials being used, how high the porch will be, if a new deck has to built and the features you want to incorporate with your porch. Also, if an older porch or deck has to be removed and a new one has to be built, this can increase the costs as well. Lastly, you have to ask yourself: Do I have an existing deck? Will I need concrete? What is the shape of my deck? Will I need a roof added? As you can see, there are so many factors that come into play that can affect the price.
- For those who want to do it on their own, plan on spending about $125 to $200 for every 100 square foot of space. This budget should be enough to cover all materials such as the screen, wood, and nails. However, if a top of the line materials is being used such as composite, the costs can easily double or triple this rate. Screen porch kits are available on the market for as little as a few hundred dollars. For example, the 17’1″ x 8’6″ Patio-Mate at BJ’s Warehouse retails for about $800.
- Since this screened in porch is technically a new room, you have to remember it will have footings, a foundation, floors, a wall, electrical, a ceiling and a roof. All of this can make the costs much more when compared to a basic porch or deck.
- Improvenet.com says the average construction estimate for a brand new porch is about $70 per square foot, so a basic 8-by-10 screened in porch would cost about $5,600.
- A forum member on City Data said they were quoted about $8,000 for a 10 by 12 deck. This included everything, including building the deck and crown molding. Another forum member on that same thread stated they were quoted $94 per square foot.
- DesignBuildersMD.com says you should be prepared to spend about $35,000 for a 16 by 16-foot porch that uses pressure-treated wood with very few accessories.
What is going to be included?
- Screened in porches will often use wood as its flooring, commonly cedar or even a combination of wood and plastic. Wood tends to be the cheapest option, but keep in mind it won’t hold up well if it’s exposed to outside elements such as the rain and snow. Other flooring options include PVC plastic or plastic-wood composites, which of course, can add thousands of dollars to your quote. Composites, for example, can be five times more than traditional wood.
- As for screens, porch screens can be made of a fiberglass, aluminum, vinyl-coated polyester, bronze or steel. Like the flooring, these materials can affect the price, but each will have its own advantages and disadvantages. Fiberglass, which tends to be the cheapest, can cost about $0.15 per square foot, while steel can cost closer to $5 per square foot.
- All quotes received by a contractor should include the plans, permits, inspections, cleanup and all materials.
What are the extra costs?
- Your city will require permits and inspections while the porch is being built, and the costs will depend on where you live. Plan on spending about $200 to $400 for these permits, but if you want to do know the exact numbers, your local zoning board will have definite answers.
- Adding additional features such as lights, ceiling fans, fireplaces, tile and vaulted ceilings can increase the costs. Other accessories, again, while optional, can include additional electrical outlets, heaters, fire pits and built-in speakers. Don’t forget about furnishing the porch with patio furniture as well.
- As mentioned prior, your current deck may have to be demolished since it may not be designed to withhold the new weight. If the deck has to be demolished, this will come at a fee, usually no more than a few hundred dollars to take down and dispose of.
- Adding new gutters, if necessary, can be another few hundred dollars to the budget.
- Upgrading the roof to a gable, for example, can increase the costs by about $500 to $1,000, depending on the roof size.
- Rescreening, which needs to be done every seven to 10 years, are costs to think about in the future.
Tips to know
- When preparing to build a built-in screened porch, check your local building codes to make sure it’s allowed. For example, a building code may require you add a concrete pad underneath the outside door to your porch.
- Oftentimes, the darker screens may block the incoming sunlight, and HouseLogic.com recommends adding a skylight to let in more light.
How can I save money?
- Always get bids from multiple contractors if you’re planning on hiring a professional. If you don’t have the time to research these professionals, consider using HomeAdvisor.com. With this website, you simply explain your project and reputable, bonded and insured contractors will contact you with a quote. Best of all, it’s free.
- ImproveNet, the website we mentioned earlier, said you should consider removing the older deck and/or boards if they have to be removed to save money. It may also be wise to add the screens yourself if you know how to.
- Premium features can really add to the price tag and won’t always be necessary. For example, adding ceiling fans, a tiled floor and a fireplace could add thousands to the quote.
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