Patio vs Pergola: Which is Best for You?

So you’ve chosen to add an outdoor entertaining area to your Perth home.

Great choice!

A custom patio opens up a brand new world of outdoor enjoyment. Rather than hiding out inside to escape the harsh afternoon sun, a patio creates a comfortable space to entertain friends and family or lounge in the shade even during scorching summers like this one.

But now comes the hard part of sorting through all the options, including choosing between a patio or a pergola.

Our patio vs pergola guide will help you make an informed decision based on your setup, location, budget, and lifestyle.

In this article, we’ll cover:

  • What is a Patio
  • What is a Pergola
  • The Difference Between a Patio and a Pergola
  • Benefits of a Patio
  • Benefits of a Pergola
  • How to Choose Between a Patio and a Pergola

A Quick Summary for Patio vs Pergola Comparisons

A patio offers complete shade and protection with a solid roof, making it ideal for extending your indoor living space outdoors. In contrast, a pergola features a slatted roof, allowing partial sunlight and rain to pass through, providing a budget-friendly option for creating an outdoor retreat.

Now that you know the quick difference, we’ll go into deeper detail about what makes patios and pergolas different.

More About Patios

What is a Patio?

At its most basic design, a patio is a flat outdoor area adjacent to your home, often with a paved surface.

Many homeowners choose to incorporate a roof over the patio to provide shade, and protection from the elements, and to extend their living space outdoors.

In Perth, adding a roof to a patio is a necessity in our opinion!

Key Characteristics of a Patio

Patios are typically built with timber or steel construction and feature a wide variety of rooflines to choose from.

Patios can be as simple as a small paved area outside of your home or as expansive as a completely protected outdoor space featuring a lounge area, dining area, and outdoor kitchen.

Benefits of Patios

Benefits of a patio include:

  • Highly customisable with a wide range of options available, making it easy to design a patio that complements your home and yard
  • Adds outdoor living space and can make smaller homes feel larger
  • Provides a usable outdoor space for entertaining or relaxing
  • Protects from the elements, including harsh UV rays or rain, even on days when the sun is scorching or light rain is falling
  • Adds value to a home
  • Adds visual appeal and character to your home and property

Patios provide a solid, level surface that is suitable for placing furniture, grills, and other outdoor amenities.

More About Pergolas

What is a Pergola?

Pergolas are outdoor structures, typically consisting of timber construction. They have solid supports and a roof featuring slats that still allow some sunlight through.

While they offer some relief from the outdoor elements, rain, and sun can still come through the slats in the roof.

Key Characteristics of a Pergola

Pergolas typically feature:

  • Wooden construction
  • Fairly simple design
  • Usually constructed with a flat roof
  • Typically include four support posts
  • Features slats in the roof that still allow partial sunshine and rain to come through

Benefits of a Pergola

Benefits of a pergola include:

  • Add a sense of privacy to your outdoor space
  • Make your outdoor area more dynamic
  • Extend your living space
  • Gain partial protection from the sun
  • Add value to your home
  • Add visual appeal to your home’s exterior
  • Add individuality to your yard

A pergola is a structure with vertical posts or pillars that support cross-beams and a durable open lattice, often covered with vines or fabric.

A Deeper Dive Between the Differences Between a Patio and a Pergola

Patios and pergolas both add elegance and function to outdoor spaces but knowing the differences will help you choose the ideal option for your home.

Here are four main differences between patios and pergolas.

1. Function

The biggest difference between a custom patio and a pergola is the roof.

Due to the roof slats, pergolas typically provide partial shelter and shade. They are often used in garden spaces or to cover pathways.

Patios are typically designed with a roof to provide complete shade and protection from the sun and rain.

2. Design and Construction

Pergolas are often constructed from timber and feature a simple design structure of four posts and a slatted roof.

Custom patios usually feature steel construction, a high-quality roof, and a more durable design meant to withstand the elements.

3. Budget

A custom patio will almost always require a higher budget than a pergola. This is due to material and installation costs associated with designing and installing a custom patio.

Ultimately, the cost will depend on the design, materials, and size of your structure. If you would like to see the exact cost difference between a custom patio and a pergola, we’d be happy to get you a free quote.

4. Maintenance

Maintenance depends on the materials used in construction, but pergolas generally take more work to maintain.

Since they are often constructed out of timer, pergolas will need to be repainted, treated, cleaned, or stained on occasion. This is especially true in humid areas where mildew can develop.

A custom steel patio is regarded as the more maintenance-friendly option. Steel is notorious for holding up well despite the harsh conditions and ample sunshine we get in Perth.

How Do I Know if a Patio or Pergola is Suitable for My Home?

We recommend a patio if you are looking for a low-maintenance option that provides the highest protection against the elements.

We also think custom patios are hard to beat if you want to create an outdoor space that feels like an extension of your indoor space. A custom patio can give you an area outside that truly feels like your living space has been extended.

A patio also offers the highest level of customisation. With a variety of roof designs and options to choose from, we can help you design a patio that complements your home and lifestyle.

For homeowners working with a limited budget, a pergola can still be a great way to enjoy a relaxing outdoor space. A pergola may also be your best bet if you are working with limited space.

If you need help deciding between a patio and a pergola, we’re here to help. We can answer any of your questions or set up a free on-site quote to help you determine which option would be most suitable for your space, budget, and goals.

Need Help Deciding Between a Patio or a Pergola? Chat With Our Experts

Both a patio and a pergola can add value to your home and provide an enjoyable space to relax and entertain outdoors.

Need help deciding between the two?

We’d love to chat with you about your vision for an outdoor living space and help bring your ideas to life.

From visually stunning custom curved patios to gable patios or flat patios, if you dream it, we can do it.

Browse our gallery of custom patio designs or get in touch with us and let’s get started designing your dream custom patio!

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