Screened-In Porch Cost: A Comprehensive Breakdown

screened in porch cost

What does a screened-in porch cost? That depends. It costs much less when you’re retrofitting an existing porch, but if you’re building a breezy oasis from scratch, you’ll have to spend a little more. Learn about the factors that influence the cost of a screened-in porch, and explore your options for building a stylish, comfortable space.

Understanding the Cost of a Screened-In Porch

Hot summer nights are the best time to go outside with a glass of lemonade and enjoy the sound of crickets while the sun goes down. Sounds buggy, right?

Now imagine you’re relaxing in the comfort of a screened-in porch. 

Modern screened-in porches are more than just screened-in boxes. They vastly differ from the old-fashioned screened-in porches built with wood and easily torn window screens. 

Explore the different types of materials, designs, and color schemes to get the style you want, and learn more about how to save on costs while enhancing the look and feel of your outdoor space.

Factors Affecting the Cost of a Screened-In Porch

building a screened in porch labor costs

Whether you’re constructing a new porch or retrofitting an old one, several factors will influence the cost of your project. Gaining a better understanding of the costs involved will help you decide what materials to use.

Building Permits and Designs

In most municipalities, before you begin construction of any project that adds to the footprint of your home, you need to obtain a building permit. Building permit prices vary considerably depending on where you live and how extensive your project is.

It usually costs between $100 and $300 for projects like porches and decks. 

Your application will need to include designs. Professional architects charge about $1.25 to $10 per square foot for their designs. If you hire a general contractor, they may be able to draw up a design for you. This could save you a significant amount of money.

Regional Location

Regional costs of materials and labor can affect the overall cost of a project. Location can also influence the availability of materials and services, the cost of insurance, and transportation and delivery costs.

On-Site Location

The easier it is to access your porch location, the lower your cost. For example, if your screened-in porch is on the second floor, it will take longer to build and cost more. 

Scope of Project

Since more materials and labor are required for a larger porch, size is a primary factor in determining the cost of your project. Also, if you are retrofitting an existing porch, it will cost much less than building a new one.

Building Materials

The two biggest factors influencing any building project are materials and labor. Therefore, the type of building materials you select will greatly affect the cost of your project.

Wood typically costs about $1.00 to $5.00 per square foot, while steel costs $2.00 to $4.00 per square foot.

Manufacturers often make structural posts out of wood, but they can be made from metal and other materials. You can either set them in the ground or attach them to the porch floor. Usually, you should space them no less than eight feet apart.

Type of postCost each
Pressure-treated 4 x 4 x 10’$23
Pressure treated 6 x 6 x 12’ $77
Aluminum 3 x 3 x 8’ $189
Flat steel column 8’ $80
Flat steel column 8’ with oak leaf design$248
Metal post with vinyl sleeve, 4 x 4 x 9’ $180

Screen Materials

screen materials

There are a few types of screen materials available. Fiberglass is the most common option because it is the least expensive, but you can also choose more durable options like aluminum, stainless steel, and brass. 

Porch screen is readily available in 24 to 60-inch wide rolls . You can purchase wider rolls for large openings, but it costs more per square foot.

installing porch screens
Type of screenCost per square foot
Solar Screen$0.90
Stainless Steel$1.00

You must also account for the screening system to which you attach the porch screen. It costs about $1 per linear foot, including the spline.

There are also retractable porch screens available. They cost about $3,000 per unit. 


The type of foundation you choose will affect the overall cost of your screened-in porch. The most common foundations for porches are pier blocks, poured piers, and poured footings.

Your local building codes and soil type are factors that will influence the foundation you choose. 


treated wood porch floor
Screened-in porch with a treated wood floor.

Porches are partially exposed to the elements, so choosing the right type of flooring is critical. That still leaves you with plenty of choices and a big price range. If your porch is at ground level, you may be able to save some money by using a concrete slab or pavers instead of building a deck.

Here are the most common types of flooring for porches and their typical cost per square foot, not including installation:

Type of porch floor materialCost per square foot
Concrete pavers$2 to $7
Concrete$4 to $8
Brick $3 to $10
Pressure-treated pine$10 to $16
Redwood decking$18 to $22
Cedar decking$17 to $23
Vinyl flooring$8 to $20
Composite decking$18 to $22
Ceramic$7 to $45

It’s important to understand how the installation cost affects different flooring types. Cheap ceramic tiles, for example, are expensive to install. If you’re installing the floor yourself, choose a DIY-friendly flooring option, like vinyl or concrete pavers.

Screened Door

A basic hinged screen door starts at about $100. Or you can choose a more expensive option, like a $1,000 sliding screen door. The larger the door, the more it will cost to install.


When building a new porch or turning a deck into a screened-in porch, you need to include the cost of a roof in your budget. There are many types of roof materials, and like other types of building materials, there’s a wide price range.

Roofing materials cost between $150 and $1,500 per square. A roofing square is 100 square feet. 

Type of porch roof materialCost per square foot
Corrugated metal$5 to $12
Asphalt shingles$4 to $8
Wood shingles$8 to $15
Concrete tiles$10 to $20
Copper tiles$20 to $40

On average, the cost breakdown for roofing is about 40% for materials and 60% for labor. 


Not all screened-in porches have railings. It depends on the design of your porch and how high it is off the ground. Some people appreciate your unobstructed view without one, while others prefer the traditional look of a porch railing.

Type of porch railing materialCost per linear foot
Wood$6 to $30
Vinyl$15 to $50
Aluminum$30 to $120
Wrought iron$40 to $60

Porch Steps

Most porches need at least one or two steps. You’ll also need a handrail if you have more than four risers. Porch steps cost between $300 and $2,000, depending on the number of stairs, the type of material, and the complexity of the design.


Any extras such as lighting, built-in seating, awnings, and fans will add to the cost of the screened-in porch. Some designs call for a ceiling, usually made of wood or vinyl, which is another additional cost. 


Labor is a significant cost of any building project. Obviously, DIY is the easiest way to save on labor. If you need help, ask friends or family or hire a handyman to assist you. You can also save by using prefabricated components wherever possible. If you do hire a contractor, choose a slow time of year.

Average Costs for Different Sizes and Designs

The average cost to build a screened-in porch is $25 to $120 per square foot. If you’re simply retrofitting an existing porch, it will only cost you about $7 to $10 per square foot. 

Most people pay about $2,000 to screen an existing front porch, but costs can be as low as $500 and as high as $3,000, depending on how much work is done and whether you DIY it or hire a professional. 

New porches cost between $5,000 and $25,000. The average cost of a newly constructed 200-square-foot screened-in porch is about $15,000. 

DIY vs. Hiring Professionals: Weighing Your Options

DIY projects are cost-effective and rewarding, but deciding whether or not to hire a professional can take time and effort. Explore the pros and cons of DIYing a screened-in porch. 

Pros and Cons of Building a Screened-In Porch Yourself

Building your own screened-in porch is an affordable option, and depending on the size and complexity of the project, there’s no reason why you can’t do it if you have the necessary DIY skills. 

When you DIY a project like this, you can save hundreds of dollars on labor. You can also save money on building materials by taking your time and shopping around or using recycled building materials, like second-hand screen doors. 

On the downside, only some have the skills to build a porch successfully. When DIY projects go wrong, the mistakes can be costly. 

Advantages of Hiring Professionals for the Project

There are several advantages to hiring a professional to build a screened-in porch. Professionals tend to work faster than DIYers because they have to stay on track to run a profitable business. They are also more likely to stay on budget. 

Perhaps most importantly, contractors have the skills to do a more professional job, and they may have screened-in porch ideas that you wouldn’t have considered on your own. They know building codes and understand ways to cut costs.

Screening in Your Front Porch vs. Back Porch

There’s a world of difference between a screened-in front porch and a back porch. Consider how your space will be used and explore the advantages and disadvantages of screening your front porch versus your back porch.

Considerations for a Front Porch

screened-in front porch
Screened-in front porch

A screened-in front porch is highly visible from the front street, so it’s more public. It will give you easy access from the driveway and is a great place for greeting guests. On the other hand, the lack of privacy could keep you from using it as much.

Factors to Evaluate when Screening in a Back Porch

screened-in back porch
Screened-in back porch.

A screened-in back porch is typically less visible and more private. It’s common to have most outdoor spaces in the backyard, such as gardens, outdoor kitchens, and children’s play areas.

Having your screened-in porch in the back would give you the ability to monitor and be a part of other outdoor family activities.

FAQ: Addressing Common Questions about Screened-In Porch Costs

backyard screened deck

How Much Does it Cost to Screen in an Existing Porch?

The average cost of a screened-in porch is $2,000. You can do it for less by DIYing it, using recycled building materials, and choosing less expensive materials. Conversely, if you’re looking for a fancier screened porch or building a new one, it could cost you considerably more.

Does the Cost Vary Based on the Material Used?

cost of treated lumber for a screened-in porch
Treated lumber is an important material for screened-in porches.

The cost of building a screened-in porch varies based on the material used for screening, as some types are less expensive. However, screening is only a fraction of the cost, and many other factors must be considered.

Do I Need a Permit to Build a Screened-In Porch?

Depending on where you live, you may need a permit to screen in a porch. If you are part of a homeowners association, you may also need permission from your HOA.

Can I Convert my Deck into a Screened-In Porch?

Decks can be converted into screened-in porches, provided there is adequate space for a roof. Even second-story decks can be converted into screened-in porches.

How Long Does it Typically Take to Complete a Screened-In Porch Project?

It could take as little as one weekend to screen in an existing front porch, provided you have some help and know what you’re doing. Building a new porch could take several weeks, depending on the project’s scope.

Related articles

How Much Does Snow Removal Cost?

The average cost of snow removal is $50 to $200, but it can vary depending on several factors. Snow removal costs are an expense you can count on if you live in an area that receives annual snowfall, but you’ll never know how much you’ll have to pay until the snow flies.  Factors in Calculating […]

How Much Does Mulch Cost for Various Yard Sizes?

The average mulch cost is $35 to $70 per cubic yard, including delivery and installation. Because landscaping mulch is one of the quickest ways to upgrade the aesthetics of your property, it’s a worthwhile investment.  Factors in Calculating Mulch Costs Explore the various factors that influence the cost of mulch, from the type of mulch […]

How Much Does Deck Repair Cost?

Deck repair costs vary, but most homeowners pay anywhere from $8 to $22 per square foot. The costs can be as high as $50 per square foot for extensive repairs with expensive decking materials. The average deck repair cost is usually between $500 and $2,500. Simple repairs can cost as little as $100, but more […]

How Much Does Sprinkler Repair Cost?

The average sprinkler repair cost is between $100 and $350, with most homeowners paying about $250. Sprinkler repair costs depend on various factors, including the extent of the damage and whether you can DIY the repair or need to hire a professional. Factors in Calculating Sprinkler Repair Costs Sprinkler repair costs vary depending on the […]