25 Jun 2012

Adding an Aussie Verandah to Your Home

Posted by bcsands

By adding an Aussie verandah to your home you are not only adding to the value of the property when you sell it, but you are also adding an entertainment area, extending the transition fromĀ  indoors to outdoors and creating shade and shelter from the sun for the house and its occupants.

Since a verandah is often (but not always) at the front of the house, you will need to give careful consideration to the look, because it will be the first thing people will see when coming to your home. Here are some aspects you should bear in mind.


Verandah Design

You need to follow the architectural lines of the existing house and choose materials to match. This does not mean you have to build a tiled verandah because you have a tiled roof, quite the contrary. But the roofing material you choose should either match or compliment the house roof colour and posts and rails should also match the colour and style of the house.

A rule of thumb would be to put fancy trim on an older style, traditional home, while the more modern, angular house should have only functional elements with nothing added. During the design phase, have a good look at all the shapes and types available and match them up to your roofline, walls and foundations.

When selecting a verandah design, ensure the proportions match the size of the house and the verandah will not be too wide or too narrow. Another thing to bear in mind is the angle at which it will slope. If your home has high ceilings, you may choose a bullnose style verandah, but this would not be appropriate for the newer, lower ceiling houses.


Verandah Materials

Most verandahs are made using wood or steel, and some sort of modern roofing material such as Colourbond or polycarbonate. It is a good idea to use as many of the same materials as possible.


Building a Verandah

Here are the basic steps to building a verandah:-

  • You will need to submit your plans to your local council to make this addition to your home.
  • Take out any guttering or anything else that will inhibit attachment of the new verandah to the house.
  • Mark out the area and ensure that the footings are big enough, especially if you are pouring a concrete floor. Make sure you can attach the foundations of the verandah to those of the house.
  • Attach the verandah rafters to those of the house or to the ceiling joists and studs. Support the extended ends with temporary support props.
  • Build up the floor area with wood, concrete or your chosen building material, it is important to ensure that it slopes slightly outwards and does not allow water to move towards the house. If necessary, put in drainage holes.
  • Attach the posts or columns that will support the roof to the rafters. Paint the upper areas before attaching the roof.
  • Position the roof panels and screw securely down, remembering that this will be the most wind affected part of your home.
  • If it is part of your design, now is the time to put on your stairs, railings, balustrades and decorative ironwork.
  • Lastly, paint or varnish the woodwork to match the house and furnish it to get the maximum use out of your new outdoor area.

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