We’d all like to spend less time in front of our screens and more time enjoying the outdoors. But when stepping outside means dealing with heat, cold, rain, or bugs, it’s easy to see why so many people opt to spend their days off in the house.
If your patio sits largely unused for any of these reasons, investing in a patio enclosure should be at the top of your to-do list. No matter how you use your outdoor space, there’s guaranteed to be a solution out there perfectly suited to your needs.
Check out these patio enclosure ideas to see exactly how much you’re missing out on with your current patio setup.
A patio enclosure overlooking the backyard helps build a connection between your home’s indoor and outdoor spaces. If possible, include a direct doorway between the backyard and the rest of the house.
Large windows or screens ensure your enclosed patio feels like a sheltered outdoor space rather than just another room. Screens will allow you to open up the patio when the weather is nice. Install blinds or shutters inside your enclosure’s windows for added privacy and light control.
Consider going with a glass roof or skylights for a bright greenhouse feel. Supplement the natural sunlight with artificial lighting, especially if the enclosure has a full ceiling. Finally, fill the enclosed space with outdoor furniture and garden containers.
Building a freestanding patio enclosure can be a bit more involved than adding an extension onto your home’s exterior. Pergolas are a great option to start with. Add a full ceiling to your standard pergola for better shelter.
A semi-enclosed pergola is perfect for protecting guests and belongings from the elements. Go with an oversized cabana for a comfortable outdoor space that’s extremely versatile. Sliding screens or heavy curtains are useful for privacy or for a little more protection from harsh winds and rain.
Upgrade your covered patio with wired lighting or even a ceiling fan. These overhead fixtures will maximize the space’s usability during all hours of the day (and seasons).
If you’re looking to get as much natural sunlight in your patio enclosure as possible, a glass structure is definitely the way to go. These enclosures can be just as beautiful during a rain or snow storm — temperature permitting, of course.
Many glass patio enclosures are designed with optional screen panels to let in fresh air. You can also find some design plans that slide open completely for an outdoor space that converts to your exact needs.
You can utilize glass construction in both freestanding and add-on patio enclosures. (The latter are typically cheaper and can conserve valuable acreage in a small yard.) Either way, they’re a great way to shelter your patio without losing the natural view.
To bring a dose of modern design to your patio enclosure, stick with clean lines and a simple color palette. Black and white offer lovely contrast. Use touches of greenery, wood grain, and poured concrete to make the space feel warm and inviting.
Pergola-style enclosures pair nicely with modern patio furniture and landscaping. Fill the space with sleek geometric furniture and decor.
The sun won’t stay in the sky all day, so get creative with your outdoor lighting. Pendant and globe string lights hung from the enclosure ceiling are great options. Or invest in recessed lighting throughout your patio design.
For a living space that blends the best of indoor and outdoor design, focus on comfort and functionality. Prioritize lighting, heating, and cooling elements inside your patio enclosure. Adding some type of insulation to your enclosure walls will help control the temperature inside.
Take a page from your living room furniture when choosing items to outfit your patio enclosure. You can even use indoor furniture in your design. Just make sure the space is fully covered and doesn’t get too much direct sunlight.
Hang curtains or blinds for optional privacy. These will also let you dim the enclosure if you want to enjoy a daytime movie or relax with some yoga.
Building a patio screen enclosure over an in-ground pool can help keep the water clean and prevent people and animals from accidentally falling in. It’s possible to design an enclosure that only covers the swimming pool.
But you’ll probably want it to be large enough to accommodate a lounging deck with some patio furniture, as well.
Invest in UV glass windows for extra sun protection. Or include a shade sail or remember to leave enough room for a patio umbrella inside your pool enclosure.
Grow ornamental plants inside to emphasize the space’s connection to the outdoors and freshen the air. Depending on your enclosure’s design, you might be able to install garden beds directly into the ground.
There are so many great options available when it comes to creating a porch enclosure. If you live somewhere warm, converting your deck or balcony into a screened porch is an excellent way to enjoy being outside without annoying insects.
If the porch is already covered by a roof, finish the job by building permanent walls or installing floor-to-ceiling screens or curtains. Use a glass enclosure if you want weather protection that doesn’t involve sacrificing that outdoorsy feel.
Remember that your porch enclosure won’t offer the same degree of climate control as the rest of your home. Add a ceiling fan and a heating element to extend the seasonality of your enclosed porch.
Enclosing an existing patio is often less about keeping out Mother Nature and more about keeping out the prying eyes of your neighbors.
Privacy fencing is a simple solution for any size of outdoor patio. Use bamboo screens for a semi-permanent option that still looks stylish. Install a trellis with or without climbing vines for even more aesthetically pleasing privacy.
Boosting your patio’s privacy isn’t always about the neighbors. Sometimes, you just want to be alone. Hang curtains or roll-up blinds from the sides of your pergola or cabana to create a private getaway separate from the rest of your home.
If you live somewhere with a mild climate, a fully enclosed patio may be more than your want or need. Even on their own, screens offer plenty of protection against bugs and less-than-ideal weather.
Many homeowners choose screens for their patio enclosure because they let in fresh air around the clock. They can be installed alone or paired with glass windows for greater insulation. Semi-opaque screens even provide some privacy and a certain degree of protection from the sun.
You can also use screens for your enclosure ceiling, but keep in mind that this will increase your patio’s exposure to the elements (namely, rain).
For a patio cover that offers the most versatility possible, go with a sliding design. Such designs range from movable door and wall panels to an entire frame that slides open.
With sliding enclosure elements, you can transform your patio from a regular room to an outdoor room in a matter of moments.
Keep it simple with a single sliding door or design an enclosure with whole walls that are “optional.” You can enjoy all of the benefits of a glass-enclosed patio or porch without any of the sacrifices.
No living space truly bridges the gap between indoors and outdoors like a sunroom or lanai. While a sunroom is technically an interior room, it offers many of the same benefits as a regular enclosed patio.
Sunrooms are safer to fill with indoor-only furniture, decor, and household electronics than enclosed patios or porches. When choosing sunroom decor, treat the space like a second living room or home office.
The sheer number of windows can make it hard to keep a glass sunroom comfortable year-round. But you can still use the space for most of the year. If your sunroom has a glass ceiling, invest in remote-controlled blinds so you can customize the space to your needs at any moment.