Why Metal is the best material choice for balconies

When planning a property development that has a balcony, selecting the right material for this feature can be a daunting task when there are so many different options to consider.  

Homeowners and developers can find themselves facing a range of different concerns from long-term durability against the ravages of weather, the perennial demand for low-maintenance solutions, stringent safety requirements, and the need for a design that will fit with the look of the property.  

There’s also the ever-present tug-of-war between affordability and quality, alongside a growing consciousness about the environmental footprint of building materials.  

On top of that, navigating building codes adds another set of variables into the mix.  

In this blog, we’ll unpack why metal is not just a great choice of material for your balcony, but arguably the best choice for designing and fabricating balconies due to it meeting a multitude of needs without compromising on style or structural integrity.  

Metal can be durable and offer versatility in style. 

Metals are the most trusted and popular material choice for balconies in both heritage and premium contemporary properties. Metals offer durability, strength, and aesthetic appeal that other materials simply can’t match. If you’re considering adding a balcony to your home or property, it’s essential to understand why metal is a great choice and has become the preferred option for many architects and developers alike. 

Structural Integrity You Can Rely On 

The most prevalent reason for choosing metal for your balcony is its exceptional durability. Unlike other materials such as wood or concrete, which may deteriorate over time due to exposure to the elements, metal balconies are built to withstand harsh weather conditions and maintain their structural integrity for years to come. 

The right type of metal is resistant to rotting, warping, and cracking, making it an ideal choice for outdoor applications like balconies that are constantly exposed to rain, wind, and sunlight.  

Stainless steel 

Stainless steel is highly renowned for its strength and resistance to corrosion. The inclusion of chromium as a major alloying element gives it a protective oxide layer that prevents rust. This makes it an excellent material for balconies, especially in coastal areas where saltwater can be particularly corrosive. Stainless steel also withstands the effects of UV light and doesn’t warp or fade over time, maintaining its aesthetic appeal. 


Aluminium is another top contender for balcony construction due to its natural resistance to corrosion, which comes from a protective oxide layer that forms when it is exposed to the atmosphere. It is lighter than stainless steel, which can make it easier to work with, especially for larger balconies where weight might be a concern for the supporting structure. Aluminium is also known for its longevity and maintenance-free finish if it’s anodized or properly coated. 

Galvanised steel 

Another option is galvanised steel, which is technically a finish rather than a metal in its own right. Steel is coated with a layer of zinc to protect it from rust. While not as inherently resistant to corrosion as stainless steel or aluminium, galvanisation significantly increases the durability of steel at a typically lower cost point. However, the galvanised layer can deteriorate over time, especially if scratched, so it may not be as durable as stainless steel in the long run. 

Corten steel 

Less common but notable for its distinct appearance is weathering steel, often known by the brand name Corten. It forms a stable rust-like appearance after exposure to the weather, which acts as a protective coating against further corrosion. It is durable in many environments and offers a rich range of colours, but might not be the best choice for coastal areas or where a weathered “rusty” appearance may not be desired. 

Protective coatings 

For harsher environments or extended, maintenance-free lifecycles, we can even provide powder coating, or alternative protective coatings to stainless steel to protect from corrosion. That way, all of our metal balcony products can stay smart and fit with your preferred colour scheme, from the platform to the balustrade and handrails. 

Glass in balconies 

Combining metal with glass infills can lead to stunning results. A glass balustrade with a stainless-steel handrail is a popular balcony design that offers a sleek and modern look, which can provide shelter from the wind without compromising your view. Equally, a glass Juliet balcony with sturdy galvanised steel fixings can really lift a property in terms of functionality and value. 

The durability of bespoke Metal balconies 

Each type of metal has its own unique properties and benefits, and the “most durable” will depend on the specific requirements of the balcony’s location, design, and intended use. Factors like local climate, atmospheric conditions, use case, design specifications, and budget constraints all play significant roles in determining the best material for a balcony.  

With proper installation and maintenance, a metal balcony can last for several decades, providing a long-term solution that eliminates the need for frequent repairs or replacements. 

The undeniable strength of metal 

In addition to its longevity, metal offers unparalleled strength, ensuring the safety and stability of your balcony. Whether the balcony will be used to host alfresco social gatherings around the barbecue, provide space for exercise or simply to to enjoy the view with a glass of wine or a morning coffee, you want the comfort of knowing your balcony will be strong, solid and safe.  

The bespoke design and fabrication of metal balconies is like a dance between artistry and engineering, demanding a meticulous approach that begins with a site survey and concept design phase. This is where architects or designers collaborate with metal fabricators and structural engineers to create balcony blueprints that showcase the client’s vision and the property’s architectural style while adhering to local building codes and regulations.  

Sophisticated three-dimensional computer-aided design (3D-CAD) software is often employed at this stage to help you visualise and refine your balcony’s concept, allowing you to understand and refine how your balcony will look as well as determiningits dimensions and how the various design elements will fit together. 

Fabricating a metal balcony 

Once the general assembly and detailed design work is approved, the fabrication phase kicks into gear. This is where skilled metalworkers, like our team at Tony Perry, hand build your balcony using a variety of quality-certified welding and fabricating techniques. Your selected high-quality metals are cut, shaped, and welded to form the structural steel framework of your balcony.  

Attention to detail is crucial at every step, including the choice of finish – whether it’s powder coating, galvanising, or painting – to protect the metal from the elements and to ensure longevity. The final product is a bespoke balcony that not only enhances your building’s façade but also offers a safe, sturdy and sheltered outdoor space for inhabitants to enjoy.  

Metal balconies have to be engineered with absolute precision and built to meet rigorous safety standards, that’s why you should always engage an expert metal fabricator that can demonstrate extensive experience and accredited capabilities in architectural metalwork design and fabrication. 

Your Metal Balcony, Your Way 

Whether your property follows a traditional architectural style or boasts a more contemporary look, few materials offer the same level of versatility as metal to complement and enhance the overall architecture of your property. Metal’s malleability allows our expert fabricators to forge unique and intricate designs and shapes, that offer you the freedom to express your personal or brand style. 

Choosing the design style for your balcony 

When it comes to the look of your metal balcony, the possibilities are endless with a wide range of options in terms of finishes, castings, colours, and textures. By working closely with skilled fabricators like Tony Perry, you can create a bespoke balcony that seamlessly integrates into your property’s existing style while adding a touch of sophistication and uniqueness. Before you call us to design and make your metal balcony, consider the following steps: 

  • Assess architectural style: Your home’s architectural style should guide the balcony design. A modern, minimalist house might suit sleek, straight lines and a glass and metal combination, while a Victorian or Edwardian style of home would pair well with more ornate metalwork. 
  • Consider the purpose: Think about how you intend to use the balcony. Is it for outdoor dining, gardening, or as an extension of your indoor living space? The function will influence the size, shape, and features of the balcony design. 
  • Evaluate space and proportions: The size of the property and the space available will impact your balcony’s design. A large, sprawling balcony may not suit a compact home, and vice versa. 
  • Planning permission: in most cases, you’ll want to check with your local planning authority before we start to fabricate your metal balcony, and you’ll need drawings and structural engineering calculations to do that.  Don’t worry, we can take care of those for you. 

Easy to clean and maintain 

Investing in a metal balcony offers long-term cost savings compared to other materials. While the initial investment may be slightly higher, the strength, durability and longevity of metal ensures you’ll avoid having to fix or replace your balcony for decades. 

Metal balconies are designed and coated with finishes that withstand the test of time, minimising the need for time-consuming maintenance or costly replacement parts. Choosing metal over alternatives like wood can save you money in the long run, ensuring your investment provides value and remains beautiful and functional for years to come. 

Unlike wooden structures that need regular staining, sealing, varnishing or painting, metal balconies require minimal upkeep to maintain their pristine condition. Cleaning a metal balcony is as simple as using mild soap and water or a gentle cleanser to remove dirt or debris. Additionally, the smooth surface of metal prevents the accumulation of grime or mould, making it easy to keep your balcony looking spotless with little effort. 

The Superior Choice: Metal Balconies 

Choosing the right material for your balcony is an important decision that affects both its functionality and aesthetic appeal. Metal balconies offer unmatched longevity, structural integrity, and design possibilities, allowing you to create a personalised space that adds value and enhances the overall appeal of your property. With low maintenance requirements and long-term cost savings, investing in a metal balcony is a decision that ensures years of enjoyment without sacrificing quality or style. 

Remember, the Tony Perry team is here to provide expert advice, quality craftsmanship, and reliable solutions for all your architectural metal and structural metalwork projects. For more than 30 years, we’ve worked with architects, property developers, local councils and large civil engineering companies across London, Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, and the Home Counties to deliver results our customers can be proud of for many years to come. 

Our skilled installation team of Arc, TIG, and MIG welding experts carry out your balcony project with some of the best delivery in the UK for heritage and premium properties.  Contact our team today and let us take the stress out of your next balcony project. 

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