Our house was built in 1958. The house originally had a small front stoop centered on the doorway. We are a corner house with the front facing east and the adjoining side facing south. The front stoop was about 14'x5' with a rusty metal railing. I always felt the windows on either side got lost. Also, because of the small roof covering that area, no plantings would grow easily except for a small strip that fell beyond the roof overhang. We decided to put a porch across the entire front of the house so we could sit and enjoy the outdoors. These types of porches are seen on some of the older homes in surrounding neighborhoods but not in mine. I built mine as wide as I was permitted without excessive meetings and approval from various city committees. The new porch is now 50'x6'. I basically built it as 3 porches with right, left and center components tied together. The center was basically framed over the old stoop. I then built another frame to the left and one to the right. I put decking down over all three sections to tie it together visually. The decking was run perpedicular to the house to try and make the porch look wider. The railing is also low (30") which is lower than local codes but since the entire porch is not high enough off the ground to begin with, they gave me a waiver. I like the low railing as it makes it nice to see out from a sitting position. I used PT lumber from a local yard. I bought the decking at clearance from a yard about 50-75 miles away and it was still cheaper than local. The decking is a discontinued composite but it will still last longer, with less maintenance and at a lower cost than PT decking. The only exposed wood is on the railings. The posts on either side of the front door are wood covered in a plastic sleeve. We love the porch and use it every nice weekend.
Hydraulic post hole digger (towable and operable by one man) • PT framing • Posts and railing • Plastic sleeves for exposed posts • Composite decking with hidden fasteners • Electric jack hammer to break up concrete from front walkway • Plastic and gravel layed under the deck to prevent weeks • Chicken wire along bottom skirt (to keep out critterscovered with plastic lattice