Print Friendly and PDF

Plan for a patio or garden room

South Africans are lucky enough to have beautiful weather for most of the year, and it makes sense to use whatever space is available outdoors to not only take advantage of this, but also to extend living spaces.


southern living

Creating or building a patio or garden room is a fairly simple process that involves putting down a suitable floor, adding supports and topping all this off with some type of roof. Sounds easy, and it many cases it is. We are lucky enough to have a store like Builders Warehouse that supplies everything we need, “Under one roof”.

In fact, the hardest parts of adding on a patio or garden room are:

1. Deciding upon a design.

2. Getting a plan drawn up for municipal approval – if required.

Let’s take a closer look at what’s involved if you want to add on a patio or garden room.

Flooring options

There are a wide variety of materials that you can use for flooring your new addition. A simple design can consist of clay bricks or pavers laid over a sand base, or travertine tiles installed on a concrete slab.

A deck is another option that you can consider, although I must be honest and say that installing a deck can be high maintenance - unless you opt for one constructed of composite material.

Adding support for a roof

If you already have paving or a concrete slab in place, and want to make it conducive to year-round use, the next step is to add a support structure for a roof.

Again, there are a variety of materials to choose from. The most affordable options would be to use cement brick with a plaster finish to construct support columns, installing concrete columns or putting in pressure-treated timber support beams.

Roof styles

From something as basic as a slatted timber roof, to a full-on tiled roof, this part of the project will no doubt be dictated by the amount you have to spend. Although, you could tackle the project in stages, leaving the roof until last and allow yourself time to save up for the cost.

While a timber slatted, awning-style or fibreglass/IBR sheet roof are projects that can be tackled by the DIY enthusiast, adding a tiled roof is a project best left to the professionals, unless you have previously undertaken a roofing project and have a fair amount of knowledge and skill.

When do I need to have plans drawn up?

Any new building and any alteration that adds on to or changes the structure of an existing building must be approved.

If you redecorate your kitchen, or re-plaster your house, you don't need permission, because you haven't moved any walls around or altered the drainage system.

But if you make a change to the structure, for example, add on a carport, or even just move the front door, you do need permission. When you submit a building plan for approval it is essential that you make sure that you have complied with the zoning regulations of the Town Planning Scheme. [ via ]