How to attach a pergola to a house with gutters

Many homeowners prefer attaching their newly acquired pergola to their homes instead of building a freestanding one. An attached pergola is a beautiful addition to your existing patio or backyard. It looks more natural and benefits from the structural support of the house.

In this article, we will look at how to attach a pergola to a house with gutters.

Attaching a pergola to a house with gutters needs to be done with care in order not to compromise the drainage. There are two ways you can go about this. The first one involves using pergola gutter brackets. The second is by building a freestanding pergola six inches close to the house.

Each of these methods is fairly easy if you can follow the right steps. Keep reading to find out more!

Can pergolas be attached to the house?

Yes. A pergola can be built as a standalone unit, or it can be attached to a house. The attached pergolas have two posts instead of four (like the freestanding versions). This means they are partly supported by the wall of the house they are attached to. This makes them more secure. And for houses with gutters, there’s no worry about water runoff or drainage.

Also, a pergola attached to a house provides easy access from the pergola to the house and a seamless transition from inside the house to the pool or patio. It is also cheaper to build since they require fewer posts.

Is it safe to attach a pergola to a house with gutters?

Yes, it is. Attached pergolas are very safe as long as they are correctly installed. In fact, they are more structurally secure than the freestanding versions. And that is because the walls partly support them. This ensures the structure is better protected against the elements.

Having said that, not anchoring the pergola properly can cause problems, especially in high winds. The structure can be moved out of place, which can cause damage to your property or the pergola itself. Likewise, wooden pergolas that are not properly fastened can rot, warp or lean over time.

In some areas, you may need a permit to build a pergola that extends your roof.

Benefits Of Attaching A Pergola Structure To House With Gutters

There are several benefits of attaching a pergola to a house with gutters.

Upgrade Your Space

An attached pergola is visually stunning, which makes it a great way to upgrade your outdoor space. Added with some comfortable outdoor loungers, it can transform your backyard from a complete drab to the perfect getaway of your dreams.

More importantly, it creates a seamless transition from your home interior to the outside. The good thing is that it’s less expensive compared to other outdoor structures such as the kitchen or patio. Also, there are various pergola designs to choose from, ranging from classic to modern and contemporary.

Compact Design

Compared to a freestanding pergola, an attached pergola takes up less space, which makes it perfect for homes with limited space. So, if you have a smaller backyard or patio, you should consider attaching a pergola instead of building a standalone pergola structure.

Safe and Secure

While freestanding pergolas are great if you have a large backyard, they are not always as stable as attached pergolas. And that is because, for an attached pergola, most of the lateral stability issues are taken away by the house. As a result, the structure is more secure even though it has a lesser number of bases.

Provides Shade and Protection

Attaching a pergola to your house will also provide more shade. This can be very beneficial during the sunny months. With the right roofing and panel, a pergola can provide complete rain protection.

Increase the Value of Your Home

Adding a pergola to your home can also increase its value. Compared to other assets, it’s inexpensive and quick to set up. You can attach it to any housing material, including masonry.

How To Attach A Pergola To A House With Gutters

Attaching a pergola to a house with gutters can be tricky because it can interfere with the drainage. So, you need to be careful with your installation. You want to attach the pergola in a way that doesn’t affect the gutters. If you don’t plan on hiring a contractor, here are two methods we recommend.

Using A Bracket and Pergola Ledger.

Gutters can be found near the eaves of most buildings, where they are attached to the fascia. Removing them to secure the ledger of a pergola can cause leaks and other problems when the rain comes. So, what do you do?

One way to go around this is to use brackets. You can secure a bracket around the gutters to protect them from damage and leakage problems. This involves mounting the bracket on the exterior wall behind the gutter before fastening the ledger to the bracket. Ideally, the bracket should be made of strong metal so it won’t bend.

NOTE: Use a lever to check whether the ledger is hanging straight on the bracket. If not, hang it straight!

What You Need

  • Power drill
  • Washers
  • Galvanized bolts
  • Hacksaw
  • ½ inch PVC pipe
  • Wrench
  • ABU66 post base
  • Nuts
  • Tape measure
  • Lag screws


  1. The gutter is usually attached to the wall using lag screws. Count how many screws there are.
  2. Next, get the ½-inch PVC pipe and measure six inches out of it using your tape measure. Mark the point it ends with a felt tip marker, then cut it with a hacksaw. Do this for as many lag screws on the gutter. For example, if you counted six lag screws in step 1, repeat this step six times.
  3. Now, remove one of the lag screws on the gutter with a power drill. After you do that, get a Simpson ABU66 post base and place it between the back of the gutter and the fascia bond.
  4. The next step involves inserting the lag screw in front of the gutter and the post base. After which, you set one of the 6-inch pipes you cut over the hole at the back of the gutter. Now, slide the lag screw into the pipe, then secure it to the wall using a power drill.
  5. Go over step three and four to install an ABU66 post base wherever you have a lag screw.
  6. To get the bolt hole for the ledger, you need to set it on the side of the post base. Mark the bolt hole locations with a pencil and drill.
  7. Once you’re done drilling, put the ledger back on the post base. Then, insert the galvanized bolts into the holes you drilled. Insert washers and nuts over the end and tighten with a wrench. Do this for each post base to secure the ledge in place.

Using 4 Pergola Posts

Sometimes, a pergola ledger will be larger than the spacing between the eaves and doorway. Rather than messing with the gutters just to fit in the ledger, you can build the pergola as a standalone structure. This means you will build a freestanding pergola with four posts instead of an attached pergola (with two posts). The pergola should be installed 6 inches away from the home.

The main benefit of a pergola built adjacent is that it doesn’t weigh on the structure of your home. Also, it doesn’t affect tax value like an anchored pergola. Your gutters are unaffected, and you have more design options to choose from.

Considerations When Building a Pergola to a House With Gutters

Check The Heights

The height is the main consideration when attaching a pergola to a house with gutters. If you’re using a bracket, you want the pergola roof and gutter to be at the same level or height.

If you’re building a freestanding pergola next to the gutters, you will have more flexibility with height. The most important thing is to keep the height lower than that of the house gutters.

This is extremely important, especially for pergolas with growing plants, like vines, on the roof. The height should be lower than that of the gutters and eaves. This is important to prevent the shedding of leaves into gutters, which may result in clogging and other drainage problems.

Notwithstanding, make sure to inspect the roof and gutters occasionally to ensure there’s nothing obstructing the flow of water.

Choose The Right Roofing

Choose a roofing that won’t interfere with the house’s runoffs, and ensure the gutter and downspout network is always in good condition.

If you live in a two-story building, you can have a pergola that is not more than half the height of the building. In this case, the gutters are located far above the pergola, so there’s no need to worry about drainage issues. In this case, you don’t need to use a bracket to attach the pergola ledger. You can simply bolt it to the wall.

FAQs – How to attach a pergola to a house with gutters.

Can I attach pergola to fascia?

Yes, typically, pergola installations require a connection to a fascia. However, a fascia board alone does not provide sufficient strength for a pergola; the rafters provide this. So, you need to locate where the rafters are.

Can a pergola be attached to the roof?

Yes, it can. In fact, attaching a pergola to the roof looks more natural and serves as an extension of your living space. It’s a great way to connect the indoors and outdoors.

How much slope does a pergola roof need?

We recommend a slope angle (or pitch) of at least 5 degrees. Even flat pergolas should have a little pitch to ensure sufficient runoff whenever it rains.

How Tall Should Your Pergola Be?

The standard height of a pergola is usually around 8-12 feet. But this can change depending on factors such as whether it’s an attached or freestanding pergola, the height of your building, and the available space.

Do pergolas have gutters?

Gutters are not a must for pergolas, but having them is good. This is because pergolas with gutters do better structurally, especially in rain-prone areas. The gutters help to divert rain from your house and pergola, thus preventing waterlogging.

How do you anchor a pergola without drilling?

You can use weighted bags. But this is best used as a temporary solution or for lightweight pergolas. For a heavy-duty pergola, you will need something more secure. Weighted bags could be sandbags or special pergola weights. You may consider other leg weights: heavy furniture, giant plant pots, and gym weights.

Conclusion – How to attach a pergola to a house with gutters

An attached pergola can add beauty, ambiance, and value to your property. It provides easy access to your home and creates a comfortable area perfect for relaxing. A covered pergola can also serve as a shade from the sun.

However, proper installation is needed to enjoy your pergola and avoid costly repairs in the future. For a house with gutters, this often involves using a bracket to attach the ledger or building a freestanding pergola very close to the gutters.

Each method is fairly easy, but if you find it overwhelming, we recommend you consult a roofer.