Outdoor Kitchens & Living Spaces Educational Content
BENEFITS OF AN OUTDOOR LIVING SPACE
Outdoor living spaces give you the room to host get-togethers with family and friends. They also make your yard more functional and can boost your home’s value.
Outdoor structures. The core of an outdoor living space is often a deck, patio, or arbor. These types of structures are most often made of wood, composite material, stone, or pavers. Think about how you want to use your new outdoor space. Do you entertain a lot? A roomy deck or a brick or flagstone patio will give you plenty of space for guests. Do you want privacy from your neighbors? Talk to your contractor about including a fence or privacy screen in the project plans.
Outdoor kitchens and fireplaces. If your goal is an outdoor entertaining space, think about adding an outdoor kitchen. This could be as simple as a grill and small prep area. Depending on your space and budget, you could even add a sink and some cabinetry. Add an outdoor fireplace to create a year-round cozy space.
Landscape lighting. Landscape lighting is practical, but you can also use it to create ambiance. Use lighting to highlight your house and yard. Nice lighting for your new outdoor space adds character to the area. It also means that the party won’t need to move indoors once the sun goes down.
Water features. A pond, fountain, or other water feature brings calming white noise to your outdoor space. They can be as simple or complex as your space and budget allow. Keep in mind that water features typically need some level of maintenance a few times per year.
THINGS TO CONSIDER
Design/build firms. Outdoor living design/build companies can handle your project from beginning to end. They usually have landscaping experience, too. This means they can give you ideas and recommendations for both the structural elements and the plant-related ones. The company you choose should listen carefully to your wants and needs for the space. Then, they’ll be able to draw up a plan that fits your budget.
Climate. If your region sees more warm weather than cold, you’ll be able to use your outdoor living space almost year-round. If you live in an area with lots of cold weather, ask your contractor about ways to make the space usable for longer. Outdoor heaters, for example, can make a world of difference. A covered space might be a non-negotiable for you. Your contractor will have lots of ideas and suggestions to share.