There are many spaces in your home that could use balustrades, and they may not be as obvious as you imagine. Let’s start by defining the different kinds of outdoor space where a balustrade may come in handy. They include your porch, verandah, patio, balcony and deck. You’ve heard them called by many names, but can you tell them apart? Here’s a quick lesson.
The porch is the area in front of your house. It’s usually a covered entryway, and many people have benches, rocking chairs, or swing seats on their porch. It will often have a set of steps leading to the front door and will be covered by an extended section of the roof. A porch can be enclosed by balustrades, but it’s more commonly fenced in using wood railing. It has a cosy, old-school feel to it, which you can modernise with tubular stainless steel balustrades. The porch is built at ground level and is usually the primary entrance to your home.
A balcony is similar to your porch, but it leads out of a room rather than going into the house. Also, it’s situated on the upper floors of a building. Most balconies will have access from one or two rooms, though they can also extend all around the upper floors. This style is more common in beach towns or mountainside areas. This is because such regions have gorgeous panoramas, so the all-around balcony gives a 360-degree view. In urban areas, there isn’t much to see, so a full floor balcony would be superfluous.
The term verandah is often used interchangeably with porch, though the main difference is that a porch only covers the front of the house while a verandah can stretch round to the sides. In Hawaii, the name for a verandah is lanai, and the term is becoming increasingly adopted in other tropical regions, thanks largely to real estate shows and reality TV.
A patio is a section of your yard that is paved with concrete, limestone, or some other form of outdoor paving. It’s usually a wide open, unroofed area, though you could choose to fence it in or lay awnings over it. Finally, a deck is similar to a patio, except that it’s paved using wood panels that are raised off the ground.
For the above spaces, balustrades can only be used on the porch, veranda, and balcony. For your ground floor enclosures, glass balustrades would give a clean, modern look, but might not be very functional unless you live on a hill. The reason being that there’s not much to see when you’re sitting on your front porch, so the view isn’t a key issue.
In such cases, stainless steel balustrades will give you the enclosure that you need, while still allowing access. You might be a people-watcher, but tubular balustrades don’t interfere with that. Glass enclosures are better suited for enjoying wide open spaces than they are for watching cars park, couples kiss, or kids play.
On the other hand, balconies offer an improved view since they are at least one floor up. So glass balustrades would be a good option. Plus, balconies are usually small, offering a little breathing space outside a bedroom. Since the square footage is small, it would justify the expense and glamour of glassware.
In warm areas, a stainless steel balustrade is a lovely addition, because it lets the breeze in. Steel fencing also works well in areas that have lush greenery, because it allows your house to be part of the surroundings. It gives the appearance of ‘letting nature in’. In areas that are cooler, a glass balustrade can give you an unobstructed view while still offering partial insulation from the chill. It also gives a modern look, as contrasted by the rustic ambience of steel balustrades.
Inside your house, staircases and open hallways are a great place for a balustrade, and your choice depends on taste and intention. Glass balustrades can open up a small room, making it look larger and more spacious. Pool areas are also another popular location for balustrades.
If you have pets and younger kids, a glass balustrade might seem counter-intuitive, since they may run into and hurt themselves. However, glass balustrades are generally made of safety glass. Plus, if you’re really worried, you could select a tinted option.
The reason glass is better than steel for the poolside is that little hands and heads have a tendency to squeeze themselves into tight spaces. If you have tubular steel fence, sooner or later, someone will try to get themselves stuck between the railings. Whichever form of fencing you choose, balustrades are stylish, elegant, and they offer a great view, so you can’t go wrong with them