The term sunroom means different things to different people. Understanding what is possible may help you decide what is right for you. Archadeck of Central SC is uniquely qualified to answer your questions about adding a sunroom or Florida room to your home. We have built almost 100 of these structures in the Midlands over the past 20 years.
What is a Traditional Sunroom?
A traditional sunroom is usually built with the same kinds of materials as the rest of your house. It is a true room addition with wood framing, insulated glass windows, and painted drywall with window and floor molding. It usually is an air-conditioned space that increases your home’s square footage – an important distinction when you are selling your house. When designing a sunroom your options are limitless, but the primary component is usually an abundance of glass to let the sun shine through. With as much window area as possible, you can enjoy the outdoors even on days when you prefer to remain comfortably inside.
What is a Florida Room?
Alternatively, a Florida room is usually constructed with aluminum framing materials and with vinyl and aluminum-framed insulated windows. It may have foam-insulated wall panels covered with an aluminum skin. We can construct the Florida room with a traditional wood-framed roof. Another option is a roof made of 4”-thick aluminum roof panels with a foam-insulated core and a white aluminum skin on the top and the bottom.
The sunroom and Florida room are both good options. It’s not fair to say one is better than the other; they are just very different.
Which Costs More, a Sunroom or Florida Room?
One of the main differences between these two types of rooms is cost. A traditional sunroom might cost as much as double the cost of an aluminum-framed Florida room. The reason for the higher cost is the level of details involved in construction, including brickwork, drywall, trim carpentry, painting, roof framing, roofing shingles, soffit trim, and air conditioning.
Sunrooms and Florida Rooms: More Differences to Consider
The time required to build these rooms is also significantly different. An aluminum-frame structure can be built in 1-3 weeks, with the main variation being the foundation requirements and the complexity of the roof tie-in. A traditional stick-build sunroom addition may take 1-2 months to complete because of the many trades required.
The two main deciding factors when choosing between a traditional sunroom and an aluminum Florida room are price and aesthetics. The principal questions only you can answer are these: “Do I want a sunroom that looks like it was always a part of my house?” Or, “Do I want a sunroom that is very functional but looks like an addition built in a different style than my house?” Again, there are no right or wrong answers here. The choice is up to you – the homeowner.
Do I Need a Licensed Contractor for My Sunroom?
Due to the large number of different trades required to construct a traditional sunroom, it is important to find a reputable, licensed contractor who has specific experience with this type of room addition.
Most custom home builders would prefer to build whole new homes. Many remodelers and smaller builders have experience in some of the individual areas required to build a sunroom (carpentry, painting, drywall). But they typically don’t have the trade experience or a proven team of subcontractors to handle the specialty trades (pouring foundations, masonry work, HVAC, etc.). Archadeck of Central SC has extensive experience designing and building sunrooms in the Midlands. We are uniquely qualified to handle all aspects of traditional sunroom construction.
Does Archadeck Build Florida Rooms?
Archadeck also has quite a bit of experience building Florida-style sunrooms. These can range from very basic, cost-effective structures to more involved rooms including electrical work and HVAC units. Prices on these aluminum-frame structures can vary significantly, not just based on the structure and design but also on the builder. There are some less reputable builders in this market who will quote very a high price initially and then drop the price if needed to get the sale. Archadeck doesn’t play these games; we know what our projects cost to build and we offer a fair price accordingly. That is why we recommend you get two or three quotes on a new sunroom or Florida room to avoid being taken advantage of.
Archadeck of Central South Carolina has built nearly 100 sunrooms and Florida rooms in the Columbia area over the past 20 years. Our design consultants can walk you through the many options you should consider before deciding what is best for you. Once you decide, we can guide you through the building process to make your construction experience as painless as possible. Call our office today at 803-784-1566 to arrange for a free design consultation to see what is right for you.
Marshall Reu, Co-Owner and General Manager
Archadeck of Central South Carolina