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What rain cover to choose for the balcony? – Ideas for temporary or permanent cover for the outdoor space

One of the most important considerations when you move into an apartment is how to provide reliable rain protection for the balcony. It’s no fun getting soaked in the rain or finding ruined balcony furniture after a downpour. Fortunately, there are some practical solutions to outdoor rainwater that you can choose from depending on your budget and requirements. The following examples and tips cover a range of both temporary and permanent options.

Why a rain shelter for the balcony can be a good idea

protect balcony furniture and delicate plants like bonsai from rainwater

A rainwater protection for apartment balconies can vary significantly depending on the cost, layout of the balcony and whether you are allowed to add a permanent solution. Without a proper cover, rainwater can damage some items outside and even enter your apartment. As a result, your floors, carpets or electrical appliances could suffer water damage. However, there are several ways to protect your apartment balcony from rain. Some of them are expensive and very effective, although there are also inexpensive alternatives.

What you should consider before installing a cover

residential buildings with modern balconies made of darkened glass and aluminum in the city

It is important to note that the following solutions are aimed at preventing water from entering your balcony. They do not protect the interior, but they offer the possibility of keeping rainwater away from the living spaces. In addition, some of these options require construction work to hang certain materials on your balcony.

protect the exterior of the balcony from rainwater or collect it during rain showers or precipitation

Therefore, if you are in a rental property, you may need to contact your apartment owner first. Drilling holes in an apartment, for example, may be a violation of your lease. So make sure you review it thoroughly. It will most likely describe exactly what is allowed. The apartment owner may withhold a portion of your security deposit if you damage the balcony walls, for example.

Exterior blinds as rain protection for the balcony

balcony with wooden floor and balcony railing equipped with external blinds


You can install exterior blinds or shades to keep your balcony relatively dry during the rainy season. In this regard, there are several ways to install outdoor blinds. Some of them are more effective in keeping the rain out. If you hire a professional to do this, you could ask them for recommendations. Also, you may need to consult the apartment owner about some installation methods.

install external blinds and use them in strong sunlight or as rain protection for the balcony

In addition, outdoor blinds are retractable and can be used appropriately when it rains or to provide shade when the sun is shining. Suitable materials such as plastic and wood protect the balcony from rainwater most optimally. It can also still help to close the blinds tightly. In this way, there will be no gaps through which the water can enter the balcony. You can also consider buying a transparent plastic (PVC) cover for your apartment balcony as well. This will allow you to see outside even when it rains. PVC is also the most effective material to protect your balcony, as it does not absorb water. You should avoid thin blinds with many gaps between them when they are fully closed. These exterior blinds will do little to prevent rainwater from entering your apartment balcony.

Temporary solution with balcony screen

use a parasol as a rain shelter for the balcony and get fresh air


A simple but effective solution for small balconies is a large parasol, which can appropriately act as an umbrella when it rains. It is best to use a variant that can be mounted on a stand. This way, you can place the umbrella in the middle of your balcony or in a corner. Where you keep it depends on the size and the area. The placement can also vary depending on which area of the balcony you want to protect the most from rainwater.

on rainy days a good rain protection for the balcony helps against rainwater penetration

This solution may not be as effective as most others. However, it is still an inexpensive and easy way to keep your outdoor space dry during showers. If you have a large balcony, you can consider using more than one umbrella in different zones. Just make sure they are well secured so they don’t fly off in high winds and hurt someone near the ground.

Install an awning as a rain screen for the balcony.

comfortably furnished balcony or terrace with an awning to protect against rainwater

While there are many variations in this case, retractable awnings are a popular type for balconies. They are temporary in the sense that they can be extended or retracted at any time, but they are permanent because they are always ready for use. In addition, retractable awnings can be installed in a variety of different designs, which makes them ideal because they are an option for many apartment renters or owners. Just make sure your lease allows for this before purchasing.

retractable awning as a reliable rain protection for the balcony as well as a shade provider

An awning is also a great way to improve the overall look of your balcony. These also come in a variety of sizes. This way, you can get one that perfectly fits the size of your balcony. However, one of the big disadvantages of using an awning to keep rainwater out is that it doesn’t provide any side protection. If the wind is strong during the rain, you can expect your balcony to get wet anyway. In addition, an awning may only work for balconies that do not have a high side railing. Still, installation experts can determine if one will fit on your balcony.

Temporary or permanent roofing

install a tarpaulin as a temporary rain protection for the balcony and use it occasionally

Again, there are two options to choose from to provide the best rain protection for your balcony. A temporary and cost-effective solution is to use a roof cover, which consists of a tarpaulin. It is waterproof and does not require installation. You simply need to tie the tarp to the railing of your balcony and it will keep the rain out. However, depending on the height of your railing, you may not be able to stand on your balcony during this time. You can consider hanging the tarp from the ceiling with adhesive hooks. Just make sure that the ceiling will not be damaged in the process. One disadvantage of this option is that it does not look nice.

enclosure of a balcony combines living area with outdoor space and protects from rain

One of the most expensive and durable solutions is to install a complete enclosure for the balcony. This solution will help you make your balcony an indoor space, while preserving the essence of an outdoor area. You can also install a roof covering, which is a pitched roof that will protect the balcony from rain. These are durable solutions that create a cohesive aesthetic with rain protection for the balcony.

durable roof covering with tiles over a balcony with balcony plants

Most apartment owners will choose to install roof tiles that match the roof or building material of the apartment. However, since they are permanently installed, you should also keep in mind that less and less light will enter the balcony area from above.

How to minimize damage from rainwater on the balcony

ratan furniture can withstand rainwater and is suitable for balconies without roofing

For example, if your balcony is tiled, make sure you use non-slip tiles that will stay secure when wet. Even a little water could otherwise turn the floor surface into a slip zone. If you are using a wood floor, you should opt for interlocking panels outdoors. This can withstand both sun and rain. In addition, it is recommended to choose weather-resistant balcony furniture. For example, rattan furniture is sustainable and easy to maintain, although plastic is also a suitable option.

balcony planted with green plants in a city apartment with an armchair for relaxing

If you also have balcony plants, they can get soaked by rainwater, which can be another problem. The wall paint used on the balcony walls should also be suitable for outdoor use. Also, check the slope of the balcony floor as well. The tiles should be sloped to a corner where there is a rainwater pipe that will prevent water from collecting on the balcony floor. Before the rain arrives, make sure this pipe is clean and not clogged with dirt or leaves. Here are the most common options you can consider.

How to collect and reuse rainwater on your balcony.

collect rainwater on the balcony and reuse it for watering balcony plants

It would be great if you could install a rainwater harvesting system on your balcony. This is a precious resource, and rainwater is of the cleanest forms of natural water available. Install some pipes to collect the water from the balcony as well as from the awnings. Use the collected rainwater to water your balcony plants or flush the toilet. Do your little bit. By doing so, you can make a small contribution to the environment. So protect your balcony in a sustainable way before you welcome the rain and get ready to enjoy the patter of raindrops.