When choosing the best features for your backyard’s decks and outdoor structures, how do you decide between a permanent or temporary shade structure? The last thing any homeowner wants is to be unable to use their new deck because it’s too hot. Proper shade is essential to enhance your outdoor living space in the summer, especially in yards without natural coverage from old, tall trees. Although there are many ways to implement innovative backyard shade ideas, the following backyard shade ideas are ideal ways to make the space more comfortable, relaxing, and enjoyable. 


Permanent vs. Temporary Shading

Not all shade structures are the same! While umbrellas and shade sails can be viable options for temporary outdoor shade, they require more maintenance, frequent replacements, and physical labor due to wear and tear. When inclement weather or a particularly windy day is forecasted, your temporary shade solutions may not withstand the conditions.

Now, you might ask yourself, “What can I use instead of a patio umbrella?” or perhaps, “What can I use instead of a shade sail?” Although both options are good temporary and low-budget fixes, they are not a long-term solution to a shade issue. 

A permanent outdoor shade structure like a pergola, LouveRoof, or other covered structure is far more durable and can withstand the elements better than temporary counterparts. Although the upfront cost may be higher, permanent structures pay off over time.



The best way to create a harmonious blend of stylish form and valuable function is with a custom-built pergola. Pergolas provide some shade and can be customized with curtains, canopies, climbing plants, vines, or other add-ons after installation. We make our custom-built pergolas and all our wooden structures from cedar. It’s a durable, long-lasting, and low-maintenance natural wood. 



The LouveRoof is the perfect balance between a completely roofed structure and a pergola, with slats that rotate based on how much sunlight you want shining through. As opposed to a retractable sun shade, the LouveRoof is a permanent fix with all the convenience but less maintenance.

If you’re looking for even more protection from the sun, a Rainier Shade power drop screen is the perfect addition. With the simple push of a button, you can add more shade to your outdoor space, blocking the sun from the sides without compromising the view of your yard.


Pavilions and Other Roofed Structures

Generally, a roofed structure is any type of shaded development with a full-coverage roof, including pavilions, gazebos, cedar awnings, and many other similarly built structures. Roofed structures provide ample shade with fully covered roofs, are versatile with open sides, and complement many different architectural styles, enhancing your backyard’s aesthetic. Adding a roofed structure to your deck is a surefire way to ensure a fabulous outdoor living space that brings indoor comfort outside. 


Design Integration Considerations 

When choosing which structure suits you and your space, consider harmonizing beauty with functionality. Choose from customized structures that reflect your garden and home’s aesthetics. The right shade structure balances style and budget, creating a harmonious outdoor oasis. Our skilled designers will consider all these points and provide you with your dream shaded backyard and deck.


Adding Value and Functionality

Think of your well-shaded and comfortable outdoor living space as an investment. A permanent shade structure as part of your deck or outdoor living space is a great way to add value to your home.

If your deck surface typically gets too hot in the summer, a permanent shade structure can remedy the issue and create an entire room outdoors for your family to enjoy. This expanded living space is highly appealing to future homeowners and enhances the experiences you, your family, and your guests can have together. 


Cost Estimates

The costs for backyard shade structures can vary significantly due to each project’s size, materials, and unique design details. Based on previous Aspen Outdoor Designs projects, cedar pergolas can range anywhere from $8,000 to $25,000, and roofed structures can range from $30,000 to $75,000, including material and labor costs. Although these prices are not set in stone and will vary with each new project, this range offers a baseline estimate for many shade structures.


Get Started with Aspen Today

Ready to transform your outdoor space into a luxurious backyard oasis? Contact Aspen Outdoor Design today to schedule a consultation and see how you can create your family’s ideal backyard and deck with a new shade structure.