What are the different types of porch construction?

Some rustic cabins have a loft-style balcony.

A porch is an extended platform or scaffold that projects from the outside wall of a building, usually from the second floor of the building or higher. The platform is firmly attached to the structure of the building, called the reason. For safety reasons, all balconies are enclosed by railings. While this basic porch construction is consistent across all styles, builders also use various seams in construction to better suit the porch for its various uses. The different types of porch construction are false porch, real porch, loggia and mezzanine styles.

The true porch is the most common and identifiable type of building, featuring a deck and, in some cases, a small cover.

False porch construction features window or door with gate blocking the opening. Also called a Juliet or French balcony, this type of balcony is not suitable for walking and mainly serves as ornamentation for the building. The railings can be extremely ornate, with ostentatious wrought iron, colorful stucco or wooden crates. Unlike the other two types of porch, the false porch requires less structural support. This balcony spans about 6 inches (15 cm) and allows the window or door to be opened slightly, providing light and fresh air to the interior of the rooms.

The true porch is the most common and identifiable type of building, featuring a deck and, in some cases, a small cover. Some real balconies are nestled in a small alcove in the building, creating a natural roof and walls. The construction for this porch must be very secure and stable, with the porch floor joists firmly attached to the building ledger. Many builders provide additional support with thick corbels or metal brackets below the porch deck. Support structures are often an incremental part of porch decor, with creative builders adding elegant scrolls or concrete figurines.

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While not technically porches, the loggia and mezzanine styles are very similar to the basic porch construction. Both styles provide a raised deck with access to the outside of the building. A loggia is more like a covered outdoor deck that extends from one end of the building to the other. This type of construction is usually integrated into the external wall of the building and does not extend outwards like a veranda.

The mezzanine is more like a typical porch, featuring a large deck with railings that jut out from the wall. Unlike the typical porch, however, the mezzanine is often an indoor construction. This type of porch construction hangs over a large room, as seen in large hotels or rustic cabins with lofts.

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