Patio Enclosures

Brush up on your knowledge of patio enclosures, and get design ideas from the experts at HGTV.

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By: Sean McEvoy

A patio enclosure can be a great addition to any outdoor space. It can afford shelter from the elements or create a space that allows for indoor/outdoor seating or sun bathing. Options for patio enclosures vary greatly in terms of price and style. If you're considering adding a patio enclosure to your back yard or pool area, you'll want to explore these helpful tips.

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The first question to ask yourself if you're considering a patio enclosure is "what's it for?" If you're primarily concerned with privacy, you might consider an enclosure made entirely of fencing or shrubbery (unless helicopter surveillance is a concern).

If, on the other hand, you want a multi-use space that allows for sunbathing or shaded relaxation, you might want to consider a solarium style enclosure with a glass or plastic overhang or roof, or a partially covered enclosure that allows for light to enter but keeps some portions of the enclosure in shade.

In terms of constructing your patio enclosure, you have three choices: you can build it yourself, hire someone to build it, or purchase a pre-fabricated enclosure from a home improvement or garden store. Each option has its advantages and disadvantages.

The DIY route allows for the most customization but requires sweat equity. Hiring a contractor will likely result in a design that's both sturdy and attractive, but prepare to pay handsomely. And the pre-fab option is as easy as heading to your local home improvement store, pointing and saying "that one;" however, "pre-fab" has a certain, not-exactly-high-style reputation for a reason. The good news is, your options for patio enclosure styles and designs are virtually unlimited.

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