If you’ve been looking for a way to boost your home’s value and at the same time create an innately pleasant atmosphere to your home, adding a new screen room might be the best choice for you. The basic design of a screen room is an enclosed porch or deck, like a three-season patio, but the four-season screen room is enclosed and can even be climate-controlled all year round, depending on the design you choose. Because adding a screen room like this adds living space and increases your home’s livable square footage, it’s one of the best investments you can make to increase your home’s value. Read on to find out more on how a screen room adds value to your home.

How a Screen Room Adds Value to Your Home

What Are Screened Porches?

A typically built screen room is a screened-in porch attached to your house that has large windows and/or screens to bring in the sunlight from outside. These patio enclosures can be a great place to set up a breakfast room, workout area, conversation pits for visitors or any other use you can think of for the extra living space, such as a second family room or a master suite living area.

How Is a Screened Porch Room Different From a Covered Patio Space?

At first glance, a screened-in porch is similar to some other outdoor remodeling projects that add usable space to increase your home’s value. A screen porch is often built to enclose a deck or patio, for example, and enclosing a formerly outdoor area is similar to the design of a covered porch. Where a screened room addition is different is in the large glass or screen walls it has to protect guests from bugs and rainy weather.

Twice the Attractiveness, Indoors

The fact that it’s enclosed is probably the screen room’s biggest point of difference from patios, porches and decks. Unlike these open structures, the screen room can add livable square footage and more value by screening in the additional area to protect guests and family members from the outdoors. This can be done with traditional window screens big enough to surround the whole porch addition or with glass or vinyl windows to create a cozy four-season room.

Opt Out of Colder Climates

A screened-in porch differs from other kinds of porch enclosure mainly as a matter of degree. Where a new porch or a new deck is open to your backyard and can add monetary value when you sell the property, these are only a good bet in mild climates. In places where you get bugs in summer or snow in winter, screened-in porches can make a wonderful addition with a high average return for most homeowners.

Versatile Outdoor Space

Of all the home improvements you can make to increase your home’s value, screened porches might be the most versatile. When you decide to go with a screened-in porch, you’re not just making a good investment; you’re adding several hundred square feet of additional area where you and your guests can relax in the warm weather as you would on open porches. Drop the screens and you can still get the morning or evening breeze without the bugs that can spoil your enjoyment of the outdoors. Opt into windows to fully enclose your screened porch and you have an affordable sunroom that can add value to the investment you’ve made in your home.

Common Features of a Screened Porch in Maryland and Northern Virginia

There may not be such a thing as an “average” screened porch, since there’s such a wide diversity in how they’re built and what you can put in them. In Maryland and Virginia, however, there are several features either a screen room or sunroom porch will have in common. These are:

  • Big windows or screens
  • Heated flooring that uses the same system as other patio enclosures
  • Outside access to and from the backyard

Large screened-in windows are common in screen rooms. This is what sets these additions apart from other kinds of home add-ons. The windows keep out the inclement weather and insects while letting in whatever sunlight is available.

The windows and screens are what set a screened-in porch apart from just a covered patio space. Screens help control the airflow, insect and pollen issues your existing porch may have, while optional upgrades to vinyl or glass windows can improve curb appeal and add value to your home. A screened porch add can also strike an ideal balance between indoor comfort and the feeling of being able to relax outdoors.

A typical screen porch is at least somewhat climate controlled. Because they’re insulated from other spaces by what used to be exterior wall, you can get creative here. It’s common for either a screen room or sunroom to have a heated floor that’s more efficient than some kinds of forced air or radiative heating sources. This can make the screen porch one of the more cost-effective rooms in your house, in addition to being the brightest and most inviting.

Apart from your own enjoyment of the screened porch, this is one of those home improvements that’s a good bet to add value and generate a good return on investment. How much value your screen porch investment adds depends on the details of your specific porch, but consider these factors, each of which is known to improve the resale value to your home. A screened porch investment can:

  • Add square footage
  • Enhance the investment you already have in uncovered decks and other outdoor improvements
  • Improve a property’s curb appeal and make it easier to sell

How a Screen Room Adds Value to Your Home

There’s a lot to be said for what a screened-in porch does for a property. Because of the unique blend of indoor and outdoor this type of area represents, you can get the best of both worlds with almost none of the negatives. Benefits of screen rooms include:

  • More sunshine in the cold winter and rainy summer months
  • Extra space to set up one of those recreation rooms you’ve always wanted
  • Enclosing your existing patio/deck area and giving you fresh wall space for adding a custom deck beyond that
Screened-in porches are usually set up to get the most natural light possible. By enclosing an existing porch or deck with large screens or windows, you can create a space that gets every available ray of natural sunlight that reaches your house, even when it’s snowing in Virginia or muggy with mosquitoes in Maryland.

No matter what the weather outside is like, your screen rooms’ interior can be the same temperature as the rest of your house. It might actually be warmer, since sunlight filtering through clear windows is a decent natural heat source on its own.

Anytime you add a room to your house, you’re adding floor space, and every square foot matters when you’re trying to add value to your home. Unlike an outdoor area that’s really only accessible during seasons with mild weather, your screen room is usable all year round. That makes it a great choice to turn into extra dining space, a game or party room or anything else you’d do with an extra room if you had one.

If your house has a patio already, it might be the one that was there when you moved in. If so, it may not be the patio or deck you’ve always dreamed of having. Instead of tearing out the old deck and rebuilding on its original footprint, you could convert it into a screen porch and then later do a porch add to the outside of that. This kills two birds with one stone: You get the porch or patio add you always wanted, and you turn the old one into an extra room that increases the resale value of your house.

Increasing your home’s cash value is one of the biggest benefits of adding a screen room. How much value depends on a lot of factors. If, like most Americans, your house is the biggest investment you’ve ever made, the return on investment may be the best thing about a screened porch add. Adding a screen room can increase the asking price of a single-family house in Virginia or Maryland by a significant margin for each square foot of new area you get out of it.

How Screened Porches Deliver Return on Investment

Adding a screen room is one of the fastest ways to bump up the market value of your home. A property’s value is ultimately just the price buyers are willing to pay for it, so anything that makes your house more desirable to potential buyers drives up the value it has.

In up-and-coming housing markets like Maryland and Virginia especially, adding a screen room can be the bump that sets your property apart and makes it one of the more valuable homes in the local market. There are several reasons for this:

The first benefit a screen room brings is also the simplest: It adds floor space. Open outdoor areas, such as a deck or a patio, are not usually counted as adding to the overall floor area of your home. Rules vary from place to place, but because an enclosed and heated screen room is more like the inside of your house than the outside, it’s likely to become part of the home’s livable square footage.

In a place like Fairfax County, where the average home price per square foot went from $274 to $311 between 2020 and 2022, every extra inch of square footage can be a big addition to your home’s value. The average screen room in Maryland and Northern Virginia adds 4%-6% to a single-family home’s price at about half the cost of a regular addition, which is a massive return on investment.

This increase helps you recover the project cost fairly quickly. Even though the full project cost isn’t the only factor motivating a homeowner to add square footage, it does help with the decision when you can increase the natural beauty of the home and the home’s value in one fell swoop.

The best place to put a screen room is where it will get the most sun. In Virginia and Maryland, that means the southern face of the house. A screen room that faces a bit to the southeast will catch more sunrises in the morning, while a southwest-facing screen room gets a view of the sunset. If the southern face of your house is visible from the street, you can boost the property’s curb appeal by adding a custom patio and enclosing it with graceful glass pane windows. Even if the southern side of your home isn’t visible from outside the property, the privacy of a screen room on the back lawn might be even more attractive to buyers.

There’s no end to what you can do with a screen room addition. Because so many screen rooms start with adding a custom deck and then enclosing it with windows, it’s common for Virginia and Maryland homeowners to fill them with patio furniture, like Adirondack chairs. You could also treat the extra square footage more like a room inside your house and set up a breakfast screen room, morning coffee station or even a rec room for entertaining guests. Other screen room purposes include:

  • Adding workout equipment to build a home fitness room
  • Putting in cubbies and toy chests to make a kids’ playroom
  • Adding interior finishing, including ceiling fans and electrical wiring, to make a master suite screen room
  • Making it a game room with a pool table, poker or blackjack set, chess table and vintage arcade/pinball machines
  • Setting up a table and benches for rainy-day picnics or ideal spaces for kids’ parties

All these options make a screen room one of the most versatile rooms in your house. That variety of uses appeals to homebuyers and adds to the resale value of your home. The fact that a glorious screen room tends to be a bright and cheery place all year long is just another way a screen room adds value to your house.

The Screen Room adds not only adds value to your home but also adds a beautiful space

Add Value to Your Home With a Screen Room Now

With homeowners in the Capitol Corridor spending more time at home than ever before, making that home a restful, beautiful place has never been more important than it is today. With home prices in the Northern Virginia-Maryland area rising the way they’ve been for many years, there’s almost never been a more competitive real estate market.

A screen room addition adds to your home in both these areas. The expert builders at Prince William Home Improvement can help you plan, design and build the screen room of your dreams. A free estimate is available to homeowners throughout the Maryland and Northern Virginia areas. Get in touch today and find out how adding a custom screen room can increase the value of your house and make your home feel brighter and more inviting.