Project Description

A quick way to dramatically add value to your home

This homeowner wanted to extend the usable living space in her patio home. Many of her neighbors had converted their screened porches into sunrooms, but unfortunately, some had been less than happy with their results. She wanted an option that would convert a space that was functional for only a few months of the year into a true extension of her home.

Converting a screened porch to sunroom

  • We wanted to convert this compact space into an area that lived large.
  • When we removed the screened porch’s vinyl siding, we discovered that the existing framing was of very poor quality; much of it was out of square, out of level and not plumb. Because there would be so many windows in the new sunroom, it was essential that the framing which underpinned them be correct and true.
  • The direction in which the home faced meant that the sunroom was exposed to the full force of the sun for an extended period of time each day.
  • Plans called for us to tile over the existing concrete floor, which originally had been designed for exterior use. It was thus slanted to promote water runoff and was of less than stellar outdoor quality. Complicating the issue was the fact that the tiles we were using were up to 36″, a far longer than usual length that necessitated a smooth surface to achieve the best results.

How we did it

  • Rather than build the new sunroom over the existing framing, we opted to essentially reframe the walls. We supported the roof, rebuilt the walls correctly, and then continued from there.
  • While we could not alter the direction of the sunroom, we lessened the impact of its direct sun exposure by selecting glass that had a smoke tint. This essentially is like wearing a pair of sunglasses – it softens the glare and allows the homeowner to sit back and watch the deer and other wildlife in comfort. The glass also had to be tempered to comply with a recent code change.
  • The homeowner selected a unique and striking tile that mimicked the look and feel of a wood floor. Since we had far less flexibility with these longer tiles, we did a lot of prep work to repair the concrete floor. We used a floor leveler and got the surface where it needed to be to ensure a beautiful, professional tile job.
  • Aesthetically, we selected long, vertical windows to accentuate the room’s height and visually open up the space. The walls and trim were finished in the same color to create a cohesive feel, yet the beadboard accents and trim were finished in a semi-gloss paint that added texture.

Project duration

  • Four weeks

The homeowner is extremely happy with the way this room has evolved. The windows lock out the pollen that had been a perennial problem in the existing screened porch, and the heated and cooled space can now be enjoyed year round.

Working with Palmer Custom Builders was a good experience. We love the sunroom; we live out here. It’s been a year since it’s been finished, and I’d recommend Gary anytime. Gary had it all mapped out and would tell me what we could or could not do and why. We had a very good working relationship.
Rosemary Vincent, New sunroom
It’s such a pleasure to have someone we can count on, and Gary has never let me down,” says Kim McCorkle, for whom Palmer Custom Builders built a sunroom and completed numerous renovations. Yet it was something else that left a lasting impression. “When we renovated the kitchen, we decided to leave the existing doors out to the sunroom. Well, my son fell on their metal tracks. Twenty-two stitches later, on our way home from the emergency room on a Saturday night, I called Gary and asked if he could do something about them. By Tuesday morning, his guys were there, ripping up the tracks and replacing the thresholds. They just have wonderful service. I wouldn’t have anyone else do anything in our home.
Kim McCorkle, Sunroom, kitchen and bathroom renovation
I had a small screened porch, about 11′ x 17′, which is a good size for a sun porch. It had six openings with screens, a concrete floor, and the same siding that was on the outside of my house was inside on two of the walls. After Gary came out and looked at it, he made some excellent suggestions. We came up with a tile that really is beautiful and reminds you of hardwood flooring, because some pieces are wider or longer than others. Gary suggested that I put bead board on the ceiling and trimmed it with crown molding. It looks very rich the way he finished it. It really is a nice room. When people come in they say it looks beautiful; and I can see it from my kitchen and living room. He really created a beautiful room for me.
Donna George, Converted screened porch to sunroom
It has been 8 months since you finished our fantastic sunroom that we really enjoy daily. You made it so comfortable and convenient. Every detail complements our life style. The room is perfect. From the beginning of the project to the end you made our experience with Palmer Custom Builders and every member of your crew very easy and pleasant. Our sunroom is the envy of the neighborhood. Just the other day a visitor could not believe the sun room was an addition. Your design, which included much more than we expected, fits right in with the style of our original house. Please feel free to bring your customers by to show them how a professional builder delivers what he promises. We love showing off your creation.
Bob Janet, New sunroom and deck addition
The best part of working with Palmer Custom Builders was that they had total control of the job. That was very important to us, since we both work, leave early in the morning, and don’t come home until early evening. It was important to us to know that everything was being handled. If they had any questions, they had them ready for us early in the morning, so that we could answer them. That kind of coordination is sometimes hard for contractors to do on a long-term project, but they managed it well.
Janet Lundberg, Screened porch addition