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What Are the Best Tips for Building a Sleeping Porch?

Jeremy Laukkonen
Jeremy Laukkonen

In order to end up with the best sleeping porch, a few different concerns should typically be addressed. The most important factor to keep in mind is weather, though privacy should also be considered. Sleeping porches should be positioned so that they are protected from the elements, including sun, rain, and wind. This can typically be accomplished by not building a porch on the windward side of a home, though shades and certain types of netting can also help. Privacy can be achieved by building a sleeping porch on the back side of a house, but another option is to make use of hedges, screens, and other decorative options.

Sleeping porches can offer a great way to take advantage of the cool night air in certain climates, where the interiors of homes are often quite warm by the end of the day. Sleeping porches are often made by simply stringing up some netting, and installing a screen door, though there are a number of tips that can help ensure a successful project. The first tip for building a new porch to sleep on, or retrofitting and old one, is to consider the weather. Whenever possible, sleeping porches should be constructed on the leeward side of a home. This is especially important in rainy areas, since a porch built on the windward side of a home will tend to get very wet during storms.

Man with a drill
Man with a drill

When constructing the roof of a sleeping porch, it is important to extend the eaves beyond the edge of the living space. That can help prevent rain from getting onto the porch, and will also help add a little more shade. Netting can be used if insects are a concern, and some types of screens can also provide some ultraviolet (UV) protection. If the screens are fine enough, they may even help keep rain from blowing straight into the living area.

Since sleeping porches are open to the elements, it is also important to consider the weather when outfitting them with furniture and linens. If at all possible, any furniture, bedding, and linens used on a sleeping porch should be resistant to water. Items that are not water resistant should be removed when the porch is not in use, since they may become moldy. It is also a good idea to select furnishings that are fade resistant, since items that are left on a sleeping porch will tend to receive a lot of exposure from the sun each day.

Another tip is to make sure the porch is secure and private, especially if children will be sleeping there. Selecting a location on the back of a home typically provides more privacy, though that can depend on the layout of the property. Privacy screens, hedges, and other options can be used if the porch faces a street or a neighbor. Most sleeping porches tend to be at ground level, though building one off of a second or third story room can provided added privacy and security.

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