Awnings are the covering that attach to the exterior walls of a building, providing some shelter above a doorway or window. They vary in construction, some being fixed, some being retractable; materials vary from cloth over a metal frame to solid metal. The most common type of awning consists of thin aluminium over a rigid aluminium frame. This is strong enough to resist rain and snow, and is corrosion proof under most conditions.
Awnings date back for many centuries. They are the simplest type of shelter possible, provided that have a wall for support. In modern houses they are useful from shading windows. This is important in environmentally conscious situations as shading windows prevents any increase in indoor temperate. This allows a house to be kept cool inside with significantly lower energy expenditure. Alternately, a retractable awning can let light and at least some heat inside during winter months, reducing the heating cost.
Awnings can be made large enough to cover a vehicle. They are significantly less expensive than a garage, yet provide reasonable protection from the Sun and Rain. The cost of the awning is far small compared to damage a vehicle will suffer from environmental exposure.
Awnings are a relatively cheap investment compared to many home renovations. Reduced heating cost, convenient shade, and protection for vehicles make awnings well worth considering.