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Florida Room: Purpose, Cost, & Top 3 Considerations

By Daniel Cdebaca

September 19, 2022

When the weather is beautiful… Of course, everyone wants to be outside!

And there are countless ways to enjoy the outdoors at home.

With an outdoor kitchen, a fire pit, a pool, yard games…

But there’s only one feature that can fully extend the use of your backyard for three seasons. (Or more, depending on where you live!)

Yes, it’s the Florida room!

And while you may have a good idea of what a Florida room is… There are mulitple ways the term is used.

So let’s begin by clearing up the Florida room definition.

shot of a florida room from the outside that has an outdoor kitchen and pool inside it

What is a Florida Room?

Florida room with couch and chairs with large windows and plants

In your research… You may have also seen it called a “sun room”.

In all reality, the terms are quite similar.

Whether you call it a Florida room or sun room… What you’re really talking about is an addition off of the side or back of your house. It’s composed primarily of windows to allow as much sunlight in as possible.

In the case of a Florida room… You’ll usually see a regular roof rather than a glass roof.

Sunrooms can have a traditional roof as well… So the terms are interchangeable. 

However, your familiarity with the terms will be location-dependent! Florida room is typically used in southeastern America… Whereas the rest of the country seems to prefer the term sunroom.

Regardless of whether you say Florida room or sunroom…

The concept first became popular in the 50’s and 60’s. Homeowners were looking for a way to enjoy their outdoor living space… Without the minor annoyances that come with actually being outside.

Interestingly, location plays a huge role in how you think of a Florida room.

Southeast vs Northeast Florida Room

Florida room with outdoor furniture with large windows
Florida room with table and chairs and chandilier

In the Sunshine State… A Florida room is more of a screen room that’s under cover.

Generally speaking, there are not glass windows fully enclosing the space.

Considering how hot and humid it gets in Florida and the southeast… That makes perfect sense!

A screened in room allows for air flow… Not a greenhouse effect!

In the Northeast, it’s a bit different. While the term Florida room is used here and there… You’ll more commonly hear it referred to as a 3 season room.

Complete glass construction (apart from the roof) will be far more common.

Although, some homeowners will swap between screens and windows. In the Northeast, you could have screens in from spring through fall… Then swap in vinyl windows for the winter months.

Even still… Most 3-season rooms will feature windows year-round.

Regardless of where in the country you live… A Florida room serves the same purpose.

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What is the Purpose of a Florida Room?

While enjoying the outdoors is always a fantastic experience… There are some annoyances that come with it.

The most annoying of all?

Bugs.

No matter where you live… Those relentless pests can easily kill your mood. (And have you running back inside!)

A Florida room is the perfect solution. This barrier will keep mosquitos, black flies, and horseflies alike far away from you.

No need for swatting, spraying, or stomping.

What a relief.

Additionally, a Florida room will protect you from the elements.

While wind (in the case of screens) and sun can be filtered into your room… They’re exactly that. Filtered.

Most Florida room windows will protect you from UV rays… And of course, a roof will completely block overhead sunlight.

So you can enjoy fun in the sun, but without the burn.

Now that you understand the purpose of a Florida room… The whole concept might sound pretty great!

But what’s the price tag?

How Much Does a Florida Room Cost?

Here’s where it gets harder to pin down.

Just like with patio, deck, and outdoor kitchen costs… It’s highly dependent on your location, materials, size, and style you are after.

As a result… The ranges can be staggeringly wide.

Fortunately, we can provide some ballpark estimates.

Earlier this year… Forbes Advisor released an in-depth guide about three season sunroom cost.

While it’s true that sunrooms aren’t always identical to Florida rooms… This is still right up our alley!

According to Forbes… You can expect to pay anywhere from $10,000-$40,000 for a 3-season room. On average, the cost is $25,000.

If you’re going for a screened-in Florida room… You can expect your cost to be in the lower range.

And of course, the opposite is true of glass!

If you want a highly ornate, glass window Florida room… Your price tag will be much higher.

After seeing the cost, you might be wondering… Is it worth the money?

Does a Florida Room Add Value to a Home?

shot of florida room from the outside

When making Florida room additions… Sometimes, it isn’t just about enjoyment of the finished product.

You want to know that your time and money is worth the investment!

This is especially true if you plan to sell your home in the future. You want to command the highest price possible!

And if a Florida sunroom has a high return on investment… It’s an easy decision to make.

So, what is the ROI of a Florida room?

According to SFGate … Homeowners gain back an average of 47% on their sunroom additions.

That’s not bad!

So should you decide to invest in a Florida room… You’ll get nearly half of your initial investment back.

Based off of average ranges, you could end up getting a $5,000-$20,000 return.

If the numbers are looking good to you…

Let’s see some considerations for adding a Florida room to your home.

Considerations for Adding a Florida Room to a House

Building a Florida room is no small feat!

It’s a full-on addition to your home… So it’s a project you will have to plan carefully.

Functionality

l shaped outdoor kitchen next to pool inside a florida room with florida room furniture

First and foremost… You’ll have to decide if this is a worthy project or not. (The same goes for an outside kitchen, or any other outdoor living project!)

Consider the functionality of a Florida room before moving forward.

More precisely… How do you plan to use your room?

We’ve already outlined the purpose. It keeps out bugs, harsh UV rays, and protects you from the elements.

All of the above are a part of functionality… But there’s more to it than that.

You can use this room in multiple ways.

In Southern and Central Florida, it’s common to see these rooms used like an enclosed “pool house”.

If you have a pool (or plan to add one) right next to your home… You can create an enclosed pool area.

That way, you can enjoy all the benefits of a Florida room… While taking a relaxing dip in the pool!

Pool enclosures won’t be so popular in the northern part of the country. So, what else is there to consider?

Well, whether you live in New York, or Washington, or Florida… These room additions will add an abundance of natural light to your space.

It’s the ideal place to curl up with a good book… Or simply just appreciate the beauty of your backyard while sipping on a cup of coffee.

Enjoying your 3 season room doesn’t have to be a solitary activity. It’s the perfect backdrop to engage in conversation with guests! It’s a lounge area everyone can appreciate.

But of course… Functionality isn’t the only concern for your new living space!

Getting Heat to Your Florida Room

an rta summer kitchen under a covered patio with a fireplace

If you’re from Florida… You might be surprised to see heating!

Of course, residents of the Sunshine State generally don’t have to worry about heating. However, there can be fluke cold days in the winter (Especially in the northern part)… And you might still want to be able to enjoy your Florida room!

And in New England… Keeping your Florida room warm will allow you to extend the season. (And maybe even enjoy in parts of winter!)

There are a few options to consider for heating.

Regardless of where you live… If your Florida room has electric access, you could add a space heater or two.

In New England, you could also opt to add a fireplace. This not only provides heat… But adds a cozy element that will boost your enjoyment.

Additionally, you could plan it out from the start!

How?

By building your Florida room with insulated windows.  Double, or even triple paned glass will make a huge difference.

You’ll be able to trap in heat better in the winter… And keep hot air out in the summer.

It’s a win-win on all counts!

Speaking of windows…

Windows for Florida Room

When building your Florida room, you’ll have a choice between screens, vinyl windows, and glass windows.

If you live in Florida or the southeast… A screen Florida room is usually the default option.

It’s less expensive, and makes your room far more enjoyable in the summer months!

Unless you want to add electricity for air conditioning… Screens are generally best for southern homeowners.

In the northern US… You can be more flexible.

It really comes down to how much you want to use your Florida room… And your budget.

A Florida screen room will have to be shut down in the winter months. You won’t get as much use, but it will cost you less.

Of course, the converse is true of glass.

Glass windows will be far more expensive… But you’ll be able to use your Florida room much longer.

If you decide to add heating to your room… You can enjoy the room well into the winter months as well!

However, glass windows might make the room too hot in summer.

That’s where vinyl windows come in.

First of all, they’re less expensive than glass. And due to the way the panes are designed… Vinyl windows can be easily removed.

So in the summer, you can pop out your vinyl windows and swap in screens. Then as temperatures dip… The vinyl goes back in!

Easy.

Now that we’ve got the main practicalities of a Florida sunroom out of the way… Let’s get to the fun stuff.

Outdoor Kitchen Solution for Your Florida Room

Use our free 3D design tool to create an outdoor kitchen to fit your Florida room.

Florida Room Features & Decorations to Consider

A Florida room is only as good as the things you fill it with!

Of course, everyone has different aesthetics and preferences.

These outdoor rooms are highly versatile… But there are a few features that will always be popular.

Let’s discuss some Florida room ideas.

Lighting

Of course, a 3 season room will give you plenty of natural light!

You can leverage this even more by adding a skylight or two.

But if you want to enjoy your custom sunroom on a rainy day or in the evening… You’ll need some supplemental lighting.

Here’s where the sky (pardon the pun!) is the limit.

There’s a multitude of chandeliers, pendant lights, wall sconces, lamps, and floor lamps at your disposal.

It really comes down to personal preference.

If you’re seeking to create a refined look… You might opt for a large, central chandelier and wall sconces for accents.

Or if you’re going rustic… Some classic table and floor lamps (or even lanterns) will do the trick!

Your Florida room lighting will create a great ambiance…  But it’s not the only factor!

Plants

Plants are a must-have for your Florida room decor.

Why?

There’s a few reasons. But most importantly… It directly brings the experience of being outdoors into your room.

Plants will also enhance the aesthetic of your 3 season room. It will accentuate the beauty of your backyard… And bring a more natural touch indoors.

Many plants also have the bonus of air purification!

Again… The plants you choose will weigh heavily on personal preference. Climate will factor in as well.

If you’re in an area like Orlando, Florida… You’ll want more tropical plants that won’t wither in the heat!

You could even consider a dwarf Meyer lemon tree. Not only are they beautiful… You can get some delicious lemons out of the deal! When your Florida room gives you lemons…

Now, our northern folks don’t need to be left out on the fun! You could still have a dwarf lemon tree. However… It will have to be put somewhere heated in the winter months.

Generally speaking, it’s best to stick with cold-tolerant plants

It’s less maintenance for you… And you don’t have to clutter the rest of your house with additional plants in the winter.

So you’ve got plants and lighting… Where are you going to sit?

Florida Room Furniture

florida room furniture next to a pool and l shaped outdoor kitchen

There’s nothing more important than having furniture in your Florida room!

The type you choose matters as well.

For your three season room… You’ll want to use outdoor furniture

Why?

Well, even though your room is technically under cover… Screens and open windows will let in humidity and moisture from the rain.

And the last thing you want is musty, moldy furniture!

So as long as you go for outdoor furniture… The rest is up to you.

For seating… You could opt for sofas, chairs, ottomans, or even lounge chairs.

Also consider coffee tables, side stands, or even a full dining table for food and drinks.

No matter what you choose… You’ll be relaxing in style! (And isn’t that really what you’re after?)

Depending on where you live… Another way to maximize relaxation is to plan for a fireplace.

Fireplace

close up of a fireplace inside a florida room

For homeowners that live in cooler areas of the country… A fireplace could be an excellent addition to your Florida room!

Of course, there’s the practicality behind them. It will provide a source of heat to extend your season!

But almost more importantly… Fireplaces create a cozy, restful atmosphere.

There’s something about a fire that draws our attention. It’s a soothing sight… And when paired with a hot mug of coffee or tea… There’s nothing better!

And considering the primary purpose of your Florida room is relaxation… A fireplace should be high on the list of considerations!

But what if you want to add even more functionality to your space?

There’s no better pairing than a fireplace with an outdoor kitchen.

Outdoor Kitchen

l shaped outdoor kitchen with power burner and refrigerator in a florida room

While an outdoor kitchen isn’t the most common Florida room feature… It should be!

A grill island can add functionality to your space in all four seasons.

You can have a complete outdoor cooking area… Without actually having to go outside!

That means in rain, snow, hail, or sun… You can be grilling your favorite foods.

In the summer, it could actually replace your indoor kitchen!

You won’t want to heat up the interior of your home on those blistering hot days… So being able to cook in your Florida room will be a relief!

And if you plan to have guests often… This makes hosting vastly easier. Everyone can be in a single space, rather than roaming around the house.

Plus, you’ll have everything you need… Right where you need it!

An outdoor refrigerator for beverages, an outdoor sink for keeping things tidy, and plenty of storage for the essentials. 

There is one caveat here, though.

If you have windows in your Florida room… You must have ventilation in place. For your grill, that means hood ventilation overhead.

This will keep your summer kitchen safe, smoke-free, and enjoyable for all.

Now that you’ve seen the ins and outs of Florida room enclosures… You might be wondering how to get started.

Getting Started with Your Florida Room

wide shot of florida room and patio next to pool

The truth is… There isn’t a single place to start!

At this stage, you’ll want to continue browsing. Consider whether you’ll want to hire a contractor or a specific company for the project.

There are many companies, such as Four Seasons Sunrooms that offer innovative Florida room solutions. 

If you do choose to hire a contractor… Make sure they are a specialist in three season rooms!

There’s too many horror stories out there… And with a full-on home addition, you want to be sure the job is done properly.

The same goes for the DIYers at heart. There are Florida room kits out there… But you best know what you’re doing before you jump in!

You can also begin to consider Florida room designs and features. If you’re interested in a fireplace or outdoor grill station… You’ll want to know that before building begins.

And should you decide to add an outdoor kitchen to your Florida living room…

We have the perfect solution for you!

Easy Outdoor Kitchen for Your Florida Room

Small linear outdoor kitchen in Florida room next to a pool

Adding a three season room to your home can be a cumbersome project.

Therefore, if you can eliminate time and stress elsewhere… It’s more than worth it!

That’s what an RTA outdoor kitchen can provide you.

It’s the easiest outdoor kitchen solution on the market.

Why?

There’s a few reasons.

For one, the design process is completely seamless. You can create a fully customized layout using our free grill island design tool… And you’ll be done in minutes.

We also have a suite of Design Experts. When you submit your design, one will be assigned to you. They’re your go-to contact for any and all outdoor kitchen related questions.

And once your design is perfected… You just wait for delivery!

Your custom BBQ island will be delivered as panels in crates.

And while assembly may seem intimidating… It really couldn’t be easier.

Everything you need will be provided as well.

You’ll hand-carry the panels to your location… Secure them using a power drill… Place the countertop… Slide in the appliances… And you’re done.

That’s really it!

There’s no finishing work, no confusing installation process, none of that.

Zero experience is required!

The faster and easier you can get your Florida room (complete with an outdoor kitchen)… The better.

Check out our Learning Hub to learn more about all things outdoor kitchens… And how to get one for your future outdoor living space.

Happy researching!

Need Help With Your Plans?

Talk to one of our expert designers and they will guide you from planning to installation. Schedule a call today.

FAQ

Often, these terms are used interchangeably. Both are enclosed rooms off the back or side of your home. However… A sunroom may or may not have a glass roof. A Florida room will have a traditional roof.

While not the traditional use… A Florida room can be transformed into a bedroom. There will be some specific considerations to keep in mind. You’ll likely want curtains to keep light out… And make sure the space is heated when temperatures drop.

A Florida room is an addition off of the side or back of your home. This is an enclosure with a roof, and either screens or windows for an abundance of natural light.

Both structures are quite similar. Both a Florida room and a screened in porch will have a roof. However, a Florida room may have glass windows… And they typically have indoor-rated flooring. A screened in porch will be more like a deck or patio enclosure.

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