Last week I said, “My wife and I are in the process of building a second home in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico where the sun favors the residents with warmth most of the year.” Since the climate is mostly warm for all but the coldest months of December and January, our terraces function as extra rooms and are open to the weather. We have no need to consider which way the terrace faces to maximize heating. Many of you have four seasons, so you want to pick up the sun with a southern exposure. Building a sunroom may be an option.
According to SFGate, “There are many benefits to building a sunroom addition to your home. A sunroom can offer you a wide, panoramic view of your yard while providing abundant natural light. It can allow you to harness the power of the sun to heat your home.”
What Do You Need to Consider When Building a Sunroom?
- The budget for the project. Remodeling Magazine states that a 200-square-foot sunroom addition can cost over $70,000 at the time of publication, so this project isn’t cheap. Home Advisor has a graph showing an addition can range from $6,000 to $110,000 with the average around $42,000.
- What activities are you planning for? If it’s an area that gets direct sunlight, you may want shading abilities. Are you going to watch TV in your new enclosure? Then be sure that you get electrical wiring installed as well. Do you live in an area that gets a lot of snow or hail or strong winds? Your space will need additional insulation and possibly a different design to accommodate. Do you need a heating and/or cooling system installed so that you can use the space year-round? All these things need to be considered when designing your enclosed space, and each of these will affect the cost of your addition.
- Sunroom Placement. Will the sunroom go on an existing deck? Does the deck need repair? Will the deck be stable with the new construction? Will you need a concrete slab? Will the deck fit in with the landscaping? Are there any big trees that will block your view and need removal?
- Interior Finishing. Once the room is complete, you may incur extra cost finishing the room off. Start thinking about the decor of your room early so that you can purchase things as you can afford them or as you see them go on sale.
Sunroom Design Tips
- Color: a sunroom an extension of your home. You want to select color for the room that ties in with the colors you already have in your home.
- Furnishings: Define the use of the room. When it comes to sunrooms, designers see a move toward furniture and accessories that look more like interior pieces. Do you want that look or something more casual like indoor wicker furniture?
- Flooring: Flooring in sunrooms typically consists of concrete, brick, wood, or tile. Area rugs add texture to a large sunroom. Intricate floor designs, such as mosaic tile or brick patterns, are best left uncovered.
- Plants: Many plants thrive in sunrooms. That means you can go as tropical and lush as you want. Plants also filter the air in the room.