As daylight hours stretch further into the evening and plant life everywhere burgeons with new life, it’s the ideal time to plan your sunroom getaway. Whether you want to remodel an underutilized sunroom design or you’re planning a sunroom addition, here are some tips for creating the perfect in-home paradise.
Determine Your Sunroom’s Primary Purpose
As with any other room in your home, the best way to design a sunroom you’ll use and love is to begin by determining its primary purpose. Will your sunroom act as a casual hang-out zone for the family? Will it serve as a seasonal dining room? Will it be your home office? Your music and recreation room? Your library?
A sunroom can accommodate multiple purposes, but knowing its primary purpose will enable you to design and outfit it satisfactorily. For example, if you plan to work from home in your sunroom, you’ll need to ensure that it’s wired appropriately to pick up a strong WiFi signal. If it’s a music or recreational room, consider installing speakers and a flat screen. If a family room or library, create custom carpentry built-in bookcases.
Plan for Hot Summers and Cold Winters
To accommodate such year-round living, it’s important to install high-end windows and doors that can keep your sunroom well insulated both in summer and winter. Sunrooms are often designed as additions to the heart of your home, and therefore they may not be tied into your HVAC system. In fact, it’s often preferable to keep them on a separate HVAC system since they tend to heat and cool more rapidly than the rest of the house. So as not to expend unnecessarily on utility bills, install a separate HVAC system and/or ceiling fans and swamp coolers for summer and a fireplace for winter.
Introduce a Water Effect
An elegant and unexpected way to up the ambiance of your sunroom design is to add a water effect. While it’s a little unconventional to introduce an indoor fountain, the soothing sound of trickling water will perfectly complete the paradise of your outdoor ambiance with all its indoor amenities.
Use Lighting to Complement Nature
Sun rooms boast so much natural light that you might forget to consider lighting. Indoor lighting becomes extremely important, however, when you want to enjoy a warm summer breeze while entertaining late into the night. Choose gentle ambient lighting, and perhaps even an indoor fireplace, to enhance rather than detract from the outdoor ambiance. The key to maximizing your sunroom enjoyment is to work with rather than against nature, just as we’ve done in many of our recent remodeling projects.
The joy of having a sunroom is that it makes the outside world accessible to you. Because of this, you’ll want to outfit it with as many windows and sliding glass or French doors as possible. Unfortunately, this also means that you’ll inversely be made accessible to the world outside your windows. Be sure to add curtains and blinds for those times you need to maintain privacy. If your sunroom is open to the rest of your home, making it visually accessible, you may want to install a door between your sunroom and the rest of your home.