Ah, summer. Warm, fun and entertaining – where did it go? While memories linger, let’s plan to make next summer even better. Patios and outdoor living spaces are our favorite places to host and gather during the summer. Are you making the most of yours?
Now’s the perfect time to address an outdoor living remodel for two main reasons:
- Outdoor living spaces and patios are among the areas most demanded by today’s homebuyers, so if you don't already have one adding this space may increase your home’s value.
- Fall and winter are ideal seasons for outdoor remodeling projects as there is relative “down” time meaning the project won’t be in your way.
Decide How You Will Use Your Patio
The best way to maximize your patio is to create one that matches your lifestyle. If your patio is adjacent to your kitchen or den, outfit it for entertaining.
That design would be different from a space outside your bedroom where a patio is perfect for drinking coffee or reading.
If you wish, we can design a complete outdoor kitchen anywhere you’d love to have family and friends gather and create memories.
How do you envision your outdoor living space and patio?
More Space Starts At The Foundation
If you are adding a new patio area, strong diagonal lines of the foundation can create a more spacious feel. If you already have an area, adding an outdoor rug with an uncluttered diagonal design can create the perception of more space.
Build Storage Into Your Design
Wherever your patio is located, you need storage for the furnishings. A good design is your best friend when embarking on outdoor living space remodel.
For instance, every raised patio needs a railing, mainly for safety but for style and function too. In a new space, consider making your railing multi-functional.
Design all or part of the railing as wide benches.
With them, you can:
- Enjoy a lower height blending your patio into its surroundings
- Create seating for a table at a corner
- Add storage space below the benches
Weatherproof and box in the wide benches to create cabinet-style storage for cushions, candles, small folding tables, etc.
To an existing rail, affix drop-down boards, counters, or old shutters and add hinged "feet". The drop-downs add privacy when not in use and can be raised and used as benches or extra table space for food and beverages when you have guests.
Cabinets installed against a wall can store everything from cushions to potting soil, pots and tools.
Additional storage might be included in a sofa’s base, or you can slide a weatherproof chest under an existing glider.
Color Me Bright Or Is It Color Me Low Key?
Personalities differ so widely it’s great that color can be used to match them all. If you want energetic and lively, bright cushions and furniture on your patio won’t be overwhelming because the space is small.
However, if you prefer tranquil, choose furniture with paler, more natural hues that will blend rather than distract from nature.
When your patio is an extension of your home, use the same tones and styles as your interior decor to make stepping through the door a seamless transition.
Choose Comfort For Your Patio
One large furniture piece might be more space friendly than several smaller chairs that won’t be as comfortable. The large piece is also better for multiple uses – reading, dozing, sipping lemonade, and so on.
Round out the furnishings with smaller pieces:
- A stool to hold a plant or serve as seating
- Nestable tables or stools for holding people, feet or beverages
- A set of shelves for display or storage
Above all, remember comfort – big fluffy pillows and soft seating.
Trip The Light Fantastic
Lighting adds magic to a patio. Add permanent light fixture in a pergola or along the patio edge. Consider stringing multiple light strands around the area or place candles in heavy, glass holders or lanterns for accent lighting.
Create A Cozy Room Anywhere
Even if a view is not available from your property, an outdoor retreat is still possible. With a little outdoor remodeling, you can create a cozy “room” in several ways.
Install decorative fencing with cut-work or lattice for an airy feel.
Plant vines. There are many choices so you can select bright and showy, fragrant, or beautiful foliage.
Top a patio with a small pergola. To hide an unattractive view, use plants with the shortest at the edge of the patio and additional rows increasing the height.
Build a wall or fence and paint it, using a color that feels right for all seasons.
Enjoy Your Patio Longer
Even with our Pennsylvania winters, we can extend patio season.
Nippy evenings benefit from a fire, not just for the warmth but the feelings invoked by the colors, crackles, and smells. Adding a fire pit or fireplace to your patio during your outdoor living remodel not only extends the seasons but increases summertime fun with s’mores and roasted marshmallows.
Even with a fire, strong winds can still bite. There are a variety of options for windbreaks: an arbor, a privacy fence, a wall – whatever it takes to offer you and your family shelter on your patio.
If it’s not too cold, it may be too hot. Without shelter, summer’s sun may chase you indoors. A retractable awning is great for areas adjoining the house, and tiltable, moveable umbrellas are a popular, non-permanent choice. A pergola with a canopy or vines can also provide shade.
Just a little planning for your outdoor living remodel can help you maximize your patio. Won’t planning next summer add enjoyment to your winter evenings?
Contact a Kitchen Remodeling Expert
There are tons of opportunities when it comes to an outdoor living space remodel and this is the perfect time to tackle those remodeling plans – when you’re not using that space.
Contact RM Kitchens to design a way to make the most of your home: kitchen, bathroom, patio, and beyond. We serve the Harrisburg, Hershey, Lebanon, Lancaster, York, and Reading, Pa. area (see entire service area) for remodeling jobs. As a full-service remodeling project contractor, we provide professional designers and work with your budget. Like you, we value quality at a sensible price.