Outdoor living areas are popular across the Pacific Northwest, from Gig’s Harbor to Gresham. Patio cover and pergola enthusiasts rave about how building an outdoor garden structure has nearly the same effect as adding an entirely new room – and at a fraction of the cost. With the housing market still unpredictable and home values stagnant, more and more homeowners are attracted to the idea of adding an outdoor living area, ideally one protected by a gazebo, patio cover or pergola. Just how to choose between these three options, however, is another question altogether.
Pergolas are freestanding open-roof systems supported by posts or columns. Traditionally, they are used to provide shade over walkways or over a detached entertainment area.
Benefits of installing a pergola:
- Great place to grow heavy climbing plants, such as wisteria.
- Elegant, European style that will never go out of fashion.
- Disguise unattractive views.
- Add visual interest and structure to any garden.
Unlike a pergola, a patio cover is typically attached to the home. Some are crafted to blend in with your roofline, while others are constructed of an aluminum frame and polycarbonate roof. Patio covers may have open or closed off roofing systems.
Benefits of installing a Portland or Gresham patio cover:
- Easy to enjoy throughout the year, since it’s attached to home.
- Patio covers return a larger percentage of their build cost in increased home value, since homebuyers are attracted to outdoor living options.
- Decreased energy costs, with more shade around the home’s envelope.
- Assuming the patio cover is solid, it will help protect the underlying deck or patio.
- UV protection for places that catch plenty of sun in the summer, such as Eugene and Salem. Aluminum patio cover sets from Rick’s include translucent polycarbonate panels that block 98 percent of UV rays.
By the way, if you already have a patio cover that’s open to the sky and you’d like to convert it to a solid-roof system, call one of our five stores in Hillsboro, Salem, Vancouver, the Tri-Cities and Gresham. Patio cover paneling may be added to a new or existing pergolas or patio covers.
A gazebo is a freestanding, eight-sided structure with open sides and a steeply pitched roof. Gazebos may also have screened-off sides so as to keep out mosquitoes.
Benefits of installing a gazebo:
- Great place to socialize.
- Calls attention to favorite places in your garden. Placing a gazebo near a pond, for instance, allows homeowners to enjoy the water feature much more.
- A gazebo represents a year-round getaway right in your own home.
Reading these benefits can help you decide which type of structure is best for your home. Think, too, about how your family is most likely to use the outdoor space. Will you gather for cookouts? An attached, solid-roof patio cover will probably provide the best coverage for year-round use. Or are you looking for a way to build a secluded sanctuary right on your own property? If so, a pergola or gazebo may be the way to go.
Once you decide on the type of structure you’d like, call or visit one of our locations. Whether you’re in Hillsboro or Salem, aluminum patio cover experts at Rick’s can help you design and build a custom outdoor structure to meet your needs.