Pergolas have grown in popularity in recent years, and for good reason. These simple-but-stylish structures are an affordable addition to your home, and they come with a long list of benefits. Read on to learn more about what pergolas can provide, beyond shade and a place to spend outdoor time, as well as what to consider before you begin a pergola project of your own.
What to Consider Before a Pergola Installation
The first big decision that comes with adding a pergola is whether you will use a kit from the store or have your structure custom-built. Store kits are made with style and quality in mind, but you will not be able to customize them to the space you have available. For example, you may not be able to find a perfect fit for the deck or patio you already have and plan to build around.
Kits can typically be installed in DIY fashion, but you can hire a contracting company to put them together for you. This is especially helpful if you haven’t taken on large DIY projects in the past, if you don’t own the required tools for the kit, or if you just want to save on time and potential stress by hiring out your pergola installation.
Custom pergolas are usually designed and installed by a professional pergola installer. These professionals can create a structure that fits your space perfectly, while also including the stylistic elements that you prefer. You can supply inspiration photos or ask the contractors to come up with something on their own.
Next, you will want to consider pergola materials:
- Wood — Wood is commonly used for pergolas due to its affordability and natural beauty. It can be painted or stained to match your home or deck. Pressure-treated wood comes with the lowest price point while still providing a decent lifespan, though it can warp, crack, or rot as time goes on (particularly if maintenance isn’t prioritized). Cedar comes with a higher cost, but will last much longer even if it is not painted or stained.
- Vinyl — Vinyl pergolas are long-lasting and require little-to-no maintenance. If you already have vinyl siding, you can likely find a close match for your pergola. It’s important to keep in mind that vinyl typically cannot be painted or stained, so it may be difficult to update the style of your pergola in the future.
- Fiberglass — Fiberglass pergolas are more expensive than wood and vinyl, but they’re also more durable. Pergola installation is more flexible with fiberglass, as well, since the strong posts can span further distances and deep footings aren’t typically required. This makes them easier to add onto your current decks and patios. The material can also be painted, both initially to match your home and in the future to keep up with renovations.
- Aluminum — Aluminum pergolas have the aesthetic appeal of natural wood, with the convenience of being virtually maintenance free. At Legacy Exteriors, we install Four Seasons Elitewood™ pergolas that are incredibly durable, and beautiful, down to details like incorporating wood grain textures. A handful of the many benefits of aluminum pergolas include: they’re engineered for precise & quick assembly, they hold their shape and dimensions better than wood or vinyl, and they offer a more modern, elegant design compared to other pergolas materials.
Additional Benefits of Pergolas
The most obvious benefits of pergolas include extended outdoor entertaining space and shade. Most pergolas have slatted roofs, which give a nice break from the sun without blocking it completely. If you add a clear, closed rook on top of the slats, you can also create a rain barrier.
Some other benefits of pergolas include:
- Boost in home value
- Stylish appearance
- Space for vines and plants to climb
The cost-effectiveness of pergolas is worth expanding on. It’s one of the few structures that can be added to your home at a reasonable price due to the smaller amount of materials required and the simpler installation process.
All in all, pergolas can add wonderful features to your home at an affordable price. If you want to learn more about these structures, feel free to visit our pergolas webpage. You can also contact Legacy Exteriors for more personalized advice, whether it’s to ask a question or to schedule a complimentary appointment.