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Residential architects who specialize in the hot, humid, southern climate

10. All About Porches

Every Southern house needs at least one porch to sit and enjoy the view or visit with friends. The pictured house has a screened porch for dining and a high porch for enjoying the long view. The rules for porches include:

Never put a porch on the North elevation.

The best location for the porch is the south facade. This protects the interior from the hot summer sun and provides a cozy spot for winter days.

Screened porches are a must in many areas of the south, especially coastal areas where no-seeums are prevalent. Screened porches should have a minimum of two open sides to maximize the breeze. A ceiling fan is a welcomed addition to the screened porch. Consider the size of the local bugs when you choose your screen. You will also want to screen under the porch floor framing to keep the bugs out.

Porches should be at least ten feet deep.

Porches that are 30" or less from the adjacent grade, deck, or terrace do not need a railing. This is ideal because the view remains open.

An exterior fireplace on your porch will allow you to enjoy your porch year round.