What is a Pergola and Why Do I Want One?

About the Author

About the Author

Mike Mitchell

Mike Mitchell is an award-winning deck builder and designer who specializes in urban decking, transforming cityscapes with his creative constructions. He is a second-generation deck builder.

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For Frankfort homeowners looking to dress up their outdoor living space, there is plenty to choose from! Pergolas sometimes cause confusion as some people aren’t quite sure what they are or how they are different from similar structures. Others may not know what the purpose of a pergola is or what makes them a lovely addition to your home. Let’s take a look.

What is a Pergola?

A pergola is an outdoor structure for your backyard or patio. It is made from sturdy columns that support beams that create a roof. A pergola can feature either an open roof or use covers or awnings to create shelter. Pergolas are often quite decorative or include features such as masonry columns, and the roof is typically flat. They are either attached to the house or freestanding.

What Can I Do With a Pergola?

Now that you know what a pergola is, you may be wondering why you might want one for your next outdoor upgrade. Here are three reasons why many homeowners choose this kind of structure:

  • Personalize Your Space.

    Design options are nearly unlimited once you consider the variety of materials and finishes to choose from. Common options include pressure-treated lumber, cedar, vinyl, and composite materials similar to those used for decking.

    For fast or DIY results, a handy homeowner can assemble a pergola kit. There are many manufacturers that offer them. Kits can also be delivered to your home and assembled by a landscape professional. A kit is a quick solution, but you’ll be limited to what the manufacturer offers. That means you’re probably limited to squares and rectangles and have fewer options for materials.

    For a truly personalized living area, a landscape professional can design a pergola from the ground up that’s made just for your home. That way, you can choose the dimensions, shape, materials, and finishes and know you’ll have a sound structure.

  • Extend Your Living Area.

    Decks and patios provide an extension of your indoor living area, but sometimes the weather can be a little much to enjoy them. A pergola can provide a bit of shelter from the elements to help make your backyard more enjoyable.

    To make the most of your pergola, enlist the help of a landscape professional who can help you orient your pergola to achieve maximum enjoyment. Then, you can choose shading options that range from temporary and removable to permanent fixtures.

    Pergolas also offer a solid structure that can hold a ceiling fan, lighting, speakers, or other fixtures to make you feel at home.

  • Indulge Your Hobbies.

    From gardening to entertaining, a pergola offers more space in which to enjoy your favorite hobbies. If you have a green thumb, the open structure of pergolas is perfect for creating an outdoor garden of vining, climbing, and trailing plants. Trained vining plants will grow across the roof of an open pergola to provide shade in the warmer months.

    Entertaining family and friends with a covered structure are more comfortable for you and your guests. Adding a retractable awning will give you shade during the day and roll back to enjoy the stars at night. Add speakers, a tabletop fire pit, and comfortable seating, and it’ll be hard to get you back inside!

Choosing the Right Options

Ultimately, the right options for your pergola design come down to your preferences, your budget, and the amount of space you have in your yard. Working with an experienced contractor will help ensure that you get the right balance of features and design for your budget and that your structure is safe and secure. To learn more about adding outdoor structures to your home, contact Mitchell Construction today!