Can I build a balcony on my house?

Having a balcony in your apartment is great, and it can benefit the house in several ways. But it’s not every home that comes with a balcony. So, can you build a balcony in your house?

You can build a balcony in your house. To do this, you’ll have to consider access, balustrades, permits, size, and materials. A balcony will give you extra space and may increase your home value. The cost of building a balcony depends on several variables, but it ranges between $2,000 and $7,000.

However, it’s important to work with a professional such as a licensed contractor, architect, and structural engineer when building with a licensed contractor. Here, we discuss whether you can build a balcony and how to do it.

Why Add a Balcony to Your House?

There are many good reasons to add a balcony to your house if it doesn’t have one. They include:

1.  Extra Space

If you’re living in an apartment in the city, the importance of an outdoor space can’t be overemphasized. This isn’t the suburb where you likely have a lawn or yard. You can have your own outdoor space with a balcony. The extra space is a good place to spend your evenings and weekends. You no longer have to go to the city park or community garden before you can enjoy the fresh air. You can even create a garden on your balcony and have space to entertain yourself and your friends.

2.  Increase Home Value

You can add value to your home with a balcony. There’s high demand for properties that have a balcony. So, many people will be willing to pay you higher for your property. If you invest in your balcony, you’ll see the results when you decide to sell the property. There are lots of upgrades you can add to make your balcony special.

What To Consider When Designing and Building A Balcony

A balcony is an important construction that you’ll need a contractor for. But before even selecting the contractor, you need to consider the following:

1.  Accessibility

An outdoor balcony requires an access point and a doorway. You’ll need to find the part of your house that provides that access. When adding a balcony to the house, there’ll be a need to inspect the building first.

2.  Materials

There are several materials you can use in constructing a balcony. The common ones include cement, wood, vinyl, and wood composite. Each has its advantages. Cement and wood are very durable and cost-effective. If you’re going for structurally sound, nothing beats cement. But wood has the best aesthetics even if it requires the most maintenance. If you want something that looks like wood but with fewer maintenance requirements, you should go for roof composite. However, the wood composite can be quite costly.

3.  Balustrade

The balustrade is what defines the balcony. It can come in various shapes and as many materials as the balcony itself. You could use wood, glass panes, metal, fiberglass, etc. it could also be various shapes. When determining the style and material for your railing, make sure it goes with the design of the house.

4.  Size

You’ll also need to determine the size of the balcony and the room next to it. The purpose of the balcony could determine how big it is. If you are only using the balcony for sitting, you don’t need it to be so big. But if you plan to make it an entertainment space or want to start a garden in a corner, you might need a bigger balcony.

Your purpose aside, you’ll need to consider the size of the home itself. The closeness of your apartment to your neighbors. If your house is small and near your neighbors, you may only be able to build a small Juliet-style balcony.

5.  Permits

The balcony isn’t one of those things you can build on your own. It requires getting permits and approval from the local authority. This is essential to ensure the balcony complies with code and you don’t compromise your home integrity. This is why you’ll need a licensed contractor for the project.

Cost of Balcony

The actual cost of constructing a balcony will depend on many factors. These include size, material, style, finishes, height, etc. Depending on these factors, the price usually ranges between $2,000 to $7,000. While that might seem expensive, you don’t have to worry. A well-constructed balcony will increase the value of your home whenever you decide to sell it. So, building a balcony is a worthy investment in your house.

Should You Build your Balcony Yourself?

DIY projects are fun. They let you try your hands at new things and feel a sense of satisfaction seeing your handiwork. While it’s encouraged in several other places, it doesn’t extend to balconies. The balcony is a sensitive project that should never go wrong. The consequences are far too great.

Thus, you need to hire a licensed contractor for the project. You may even get an architect to draw up the plan for the balcony. But most contractors will do it. You’re unlikely to get permits for the construction if you don’t have a licensed contractor. It’s not enough to get a licensed contractor. Let it be one you can trust.

Carefully vet the contractor and ensure that they use the best materials. The plan and construction should be up to code, and make sure you waterproof after. The collapse of the balcony could compromise the whole building. It could also lead to injuries and death. So, you want to avoid any situation that could endanger lives and make you liable.

Tips For Adding Balcony to Your House

If you’re adding a balcony to your house, there are tips to help you get the best experience. They include:

  • Ensure protection from wind by building recessed balcony or adding full-height glass panes to the structure
  • Consult a structural engineer to help you determine if your home can support a balcony and the next type 
  • Add plants to the balcony but make sure there are not too big or heavy
  • Add lights and furniture to your balcony, but nothing too brings or too heavy

In Conclusion

A balcony is a nice addition to your house. In most cases, you can add it to an existing home. You need to make sure the contractor follows the best practices. You’ll most likely gain anything you spend on the balcony back when you sell the house.

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