Structurally Speaking Sunrooms Add Light to Your Life!

sunroomsLet’s face it, we’ve all had some difficult days over the past few months. Each of us have been striving to find ways to let a little light into our worlds. One of the best ways to do this is by creating a peaceful atmosphere to enjoy in our homes. Certainly, many of us have been spending lots of time in them. Creating a bright ambiance in our living space is crucial to our well-being. Plus, adding natural light and extra room is a benefit that homeowners can enjoy for many years to come. Sunrooms are a fantastic way to do exactly that and more.

What is a Sunroom?

This may seem like a silly question but many people want to know what constitutes a sunroom. The word, sunroom, is thrown around a bit and sometimes misunderstood. For instance, many folks consider an outdoor enclosure screened from the elements as a sunroom. Technically, this is more of a screened porch that does indeed protect you from the elements but is not an extension of your indoor living space.

True sunrooms are often referred to as solariums, which is a lovely word. In Latin, it means a place of sunlight. At Structurally Speaking, we love this concept. We create these places of sunlight within your home as additions to your living space. It allows you to enjoy the beautiful landscape of outdoors. Rather than being surrounded by mainly walls and a few windows like a traditional room, glass typically surrounds sunrooms to allow as much sunshine as you wish to enter your world. Meanwhile, you can enjoy the comforts of being indoors as you relax in your room full of light.

What are the Benefits of Adding a Sunroom?

Better yet, sunrooms are enclosures that actually add square footage to your house. Since they incorporate the internal conveniences of your home such as electricity, heating and air, they add living space to your floorplan. In turn, this often adds monetary value to your property. Therefore, what you invest into your sunroom, pays off later. More importantly, you get to enjoy the value right away. Think about all the benefits that enhance your living.

First, consider the most obvious advantage of a sunroom addition – extra space! When you add a sunroom to your home, this addition adds square footage and provides more living room for your entire family. As many of us have been at home more than usual over the past few months, we can appreciate this additional living space even more.

Second, adding a sunroom also adds natural light. Not only is natural light beautiful and soothing, natural light studies show it’s beneficial to our well-being. Year-round sunrooms enclosed in glass allow light to boost your Vitamin D and decrease depression. Furthermore, improved mental health may help you sleep better, which certainly has health boosts.

Third, while a patio could provide the above benefits to a certain extent, all-seasons sunrooms allow you to enjoy the outdoors from a protected point of view.  Since glass typically surrounds these enclosures on three walls, you can still immerse yourself in nature. However, you needn’t fret over the more worrisome aspects of nature. For instance, the roof above you protects you from sunburn, rain and snow. Additionally, year-round sunrooms are temperature-controlled. Be cool when you want to chill, stay toasty when your wish to be warm. Whatever the weather is outside, your beautiful sunroom is always comfy inside. Sometimes, nature involves pesky critters. Ditch the bug spray and lounge without bees and other creatures buzzing about.

Unique Ideas for Sunrooms

Next, think about how you can use your beautiful sunroom. Diverse entertainment options abound for your special space. Just a few ways to use your sunroom include:

  • Make it a gaming area. Whether you prefer classic board games, cards or a little pool or ping pong, year-round sunrooms provide the perfect space.
  • Tired of walls surrounding you when you work out indoors? Fill your space with glass and light and enjoy the outdoors in a temperature-controlled room.
  • Enjoy outdoor concerts, indoors! A sunroom addition is the perfect place for a music room. Whether you opt for a grand piano, guitar space or a little bit of both, sunrooms are lovely places to practice and perform.
  • Don’t close yourself in when crafting! Move your materials to your sunroom and enjoy the peacefulness of nature while you create your works of art.
  • Speaking of art, year-round sunrooms provide great lighting for an art studio. Plus, they provide the perfect view to inspire your masterpieces!
  • A glass sunroom is also a great space for a hot tub. Hop in for a soak no matter the weather. Better yet, if your space is large enough, a small indoor swim spa is an intriguing addition.
  • Many folks enjoy the idea of an outdoor kitchen. However, some homeowners would rather feel like they’re outside without directly dealing with ALL that nature offers. An indoor sunroom kitchen is a fun alternative.
  • Or, go for a more practical approach and use your sunroom for office space. Sitting behind your desk and toiling away feels a lot less like working when surrounded by glass and the outdoors.
  • Likewise, a room addition is practical for additional sleeping space. With a futon or fold-out couch and other appropriate furniture, you can easily convert your sunroom to hold extra guests whenever needed.

Whatever its main use, your sunroom is likely going to be a gathering space for family and friends as well. So, keep this in mind as you select which sunroom styles fit your lifestyle best.

Selecting A Sunroom that Fits Your Lifestyle the Best

As you consider adding a sunroom, let’s figure out how you prefer to use your space and the types of sunrooms that fit your style the best. Sunroom ideas abound. Determining the types of sunrooms for your needs requires you to sort through diverse sunroom options which can be a chore in itself. However, it’s a pretty fun chore! Plus, our team is here to help you find the perfect design for you and your family.

Here are a few sunroom styles to get you started.

  • Florida sunroom – Essentially, a Florida room is the same as a sunroom. A small difference sometimes noted is that a sunroom can be on the side of a house whereas a Florida room is more often at the back of a house. Nowadays, the terms are often used interchangeably no matter the location of your sunroom addition.
  • Cathedral sunroom – Vaulted ceilings let additional light shine throughout a cathedral sunroom. The height opens the space more as well.
  • Conservatory Sunroom – Originally designed to cultivate plants, a conservatory has a lean frame and glass or glazed walls. The roof is glass as well.
  • Gable Sunroom – The roofing of a gable sunroom consists of two solid panels sloping in opposite directions.
  • Shed Sunroom – The style of a shed sunroom (also known as a studio sunroom) incorporates a single-pitch, solid roof that slopes away from the house.
  • Solarium – Similar to a conservatory, a solarium has a glass roof. However, it is often built with a slope and the walls join with a continuous curve.

Many folks also like to have a theme incorporated in their sunroom styles. Opt for a regional theme that highlights the coast or mountains. Or, choose a theme that reflects a hobby, sport or even your favorite movie or show!

Frequently Asked Questions

In addition to sunroom design, our clients often have some logistical questions. For instance, here are a couple of queries we’ve seen typed into search engines lately.

Where to build your sunroom, using an existing patio??

While this is technically possible, there are numerous factors to consider. First, an existing patio is likely not graded properly enough to build a structure on it. If it tilts the wrong way, has some aging, etc., your structure will not be stable. Furthermore, not all patios are able to bear the weight of a new addition placed upon them.

Is a sunroom cheaper than an addition?

Ultimately, a sunroom may involve less material than a room addition and may therefore cost less. For example, you may not be using as much insulation for a sunroom. Although, rest assured that our team at Structurally Speaking can make your sunroom energy efficient! With the use of insulated glass or double paned glass, you can keep your area cool, or warm, when needed. Furthermore, with proper shading, you can use light when you want it and limit it when you don’t.  Plus, adding attractive square footage to your home is always a great selling point!

Other Ways Structurally Speaking Brightens Your Day

At Structurally Speaking, we strive to brighten your day from the start. First, we provide personalized designs. That means our approach begins and ends with YOU.  After carefully listening to your needs, we make recommendations and design a sunroom that you deserve!

Second, we offer competitive pricing.  Once we understand your needs, we review budgets from the start.  Therefore, all parties have a realistic idea of what to expect in the final cost during the initial consultation!

Third, we guarantee expert project management.  Our owner, Jim Brennan, personally oversees every job site.  For nearly twenty years, he has stood out as one of Raleigh’s top designers.  This experience shines through in all of our projects.

Finally, we dedicate ourselves to providing unparalleled customer service.  Fortunately, we get much of our business from customer referrals.  And, we appreciate that.  However, we also work hard to earn it. Our goal is to be better than the competition. Always. In order to improve our results, we encourage open lines of communication.  Ultimately, we are your partners in your project!  But, don’t worry, WE do all the work!

Customer Reviews

As we mentioned, much of our work comes from customer referrals. Likewise, our clients have taken the time to share some kind reviews on our behalf. Here are just a few.

Just thought I’d let you know that we had some friends over that were interested in getting a custom porch similar to ours. I explained what we had done, our experiences with you and our discussions with others. Essentially, I said that at the end of the day, if I ever had to do another porch, I would have no hesitation having you do it again.

I said that you always went the extra mile and addressed any concerns I ever had. I warned them that the process can take longer than they expect, but ultimately it is worth it. I think I had them convinced that they would be crazy to go elsewhere. I pointed out that one of the main differences between you and others was your level of professionalism. You prepared designs, showed them in software, and provided drawings unlike others who may have been cheaper, but simply took the approach that they would build what you asked for without offering any design ideas. I also spoke well all of the guys in terms of their work ethic. I spoke so positively; they must have thought I was on commission!

Rosemary R.

We could not be more pleased. Jim Brennan has a gift for design, and Structurally Speaking’s crew did an excellent job of turning our vision into a reality. Their attention to detail and their overall workmanship was wonderful.”

Mike R.

With all this in mind, what are you waiting for? Contact Structurally Speaking today for your free design consultation and quote! We also specialize in creating, designing and building highly-functioning, custom decks, screened porches and pergolas.