What is the Difference Between a Porch and a Portico?

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The difference between a porch and a portico is that a porch is an extension of your living space, and a portico is an architectural detail that provides shelter over an entryway.

A portico and a porch can add interest and functionality to your home. At Craftsman’s Choice, we can help you decide whether a portico or porch is best for your home and can design a remodeling project that suits your style and budget.

What is a Porch?

A porch is usually an extension of the floor and often runs the length of your home. It is used as an additional living space and often contains seating.

A porch is a communal and functional gathering space that can add value to your home. We’ve all seen the rom-com where the young couple sits on a porch swing on a balmy summer evening.

A porch is often raised off the ground and requires a railing system. It is a bigger project to install and takes more time and money. But the results are worth it, particularly if you create seating and entertaining areas on your porch.

What is a Portico?

A portico is a structure over an entryway that provides cover. If you’ve ever ended a date outside the front door, you may have appreciated the protection and privacy a portico offers.

Porticos only come off the house 5 or 6 ft and are usually supported by columns. These are practical and often have architectural details like stone bases and tapered columns.

Adding beaded or cedar porch ceilings and crown molding in a portico is common to provide a different texture. A portico helps break up the front of the house if you have a long, wide space. It adds architectural detail and is versatile in introducing color and texture.

A portico adds formality and practicality to your home. Not only does it keep you dry on a wet day, but it also protects your front door from weather damage.

Types of Porticos

  • Front Door Portico: The front door portico can be sleek and simple using a curved, hip, gabled, or flat roof style. If you have a bigger home, you can opt for a grand portico style.
  • Enclosed Portico: An enclosed Portico is ideal if you don’t have the space for a porch. It extends your living area slightly and acts as a barrier against dust, dirt, and debris.

What is the Main Difference Between a Porch and a Portico?

The main difference between a porch and a portico is that a porch is an area you can entertain, have seating and relax. In contrast, a portico is a transitionary space leading from outside in. Porticos are not used for entertaining and have a more functional purpose.

Whether you want to add a porch or portico, we have the skill and expertise to upgrade your home. We can create a custom rendering based on the remodeling goals that allow you to see what your project will look like.

Each city has different setbacks and limitations to what homeowners can build on their property. We will help guide you through this process and develop a solution for your property.

Need More Info About the Difference Between a Porch and a Portico?

Choosing between a porch and a portico will depend on your city, the style of your home, your budget, and your goals for the space.

We offer a free consultation where we will chat with you about your remodeling project and help you decide on the best options for your home.

So, contact us today if you want to learn more about the difference between a porch and a portico and which is best for your space.

Ben Juncker


When Ben Juncker was sitting in his high school career planning class, siding installer was not on his list of potential career paths. As with most people in the construction industry, certain questionable life choices led to a point where they were wearing a tool belt, working with their hands. His path started just this way and he would not change a thing. Those early years in his business of scraping and clawing their way to profitability and stability, have helped him to build a culture of hard work and perseverance at Craftsman’s Choice. Ben started his company in 1998 and they installed their first James Hardie job in 2000. Since that time Craftsman’s Choice has become one of the nation’s top James Hardie Remodelers. They have won James Hardie’s prestigious President’s Club award every year since it’s inception in 2015.

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