7 Tips for Designing Your Outdoor Living Space
Outdoor living spaces continue to be a top request for 2014 Raleigh new home designs.
Outdoor Living Design Tip #1: Integrate indoors and outdoors
Design the outdoor living space into your home - by integrating at least two walls of the home into the deck, patio, or porch.
Your outdoor living spaces will feel like a more cohesive part of your home - as they are physically structured into the floor plan.
In this North Carolina custom home photo, three types of indoor outdoor living are included: an open stamped concrete patio, covered patio, and sun room. These three types of outdoor living are designed to flow into one another, each having a distinct purpose.
Outdoor Living Design Tip #2: Maintain continuity between indoor and outdoor styles
It can feel awkward if the interior of your home is contemporary and the exterior is traditional.
You can maintain continuity by using the same home style, theme, or genre inside and outside.
For this North Carolina custom home, the stone in these craftsman columns is also used in the two story fireplace. The stone colors - chosen to enhance the picturesque landscape of the lot - create outdoor-indoor continuity.
Outdoor Living Design Tip #3: Know your most cost effective options
If you have a pretty good idea of what you want your outdoor living space to feel like, there are going to be more and less expensive alternatives that can create a similar upscale look.
For instance, while patio pavers (made of brick, stone, or concrete blocks) are beautiful, they are typically more expensive than adding stamped concrete.
Outdoor Living Design Tip #4: Create versatile areas
If you have the option of integrating two distinct outdoor living spaces, consider a screen porch with either a deck or patio.
Screen porches are best year-round spaces, especially if you integrate a fireplace, so many home buyers choose to start with a screen porch, and add additional outdoor living spaces from there.
Outdoor Living Design Tip #5: Incorporate unique features
While it is tempting to get all the features you love into one space, you'll want to narrow in on a few favorites. Choosing a few special features will maintain a reasonable budget, and it will give your outdoor living spaces a center focus.
For instance, more 2014 home buyers are opting for a fireplace OR fire pit design.
If you plan to use a table with chairs, you'll want to avoid designs that build in seat walls.
Outdoor Living Design Tip #6: Balance budget with needs
While some home buyers are opting to add a full-service kitchen to their backyards, others want to keep it simple - with a grilling deck.
You'll want to ask yourself: how often will I truly use an outdoor cooking area? If the answer is on holidays, you're probably better off budgeting for an upgrade in the kitchen and a simple outdoor living space.
Keep in mind that simple does not mean small! A large, rectangular deck can be cost effective - with a total cost that's much lower than a potential outdoor kitchen, for example. Ask your builder about including a built-in gas line for your grill.
Outdoor Living Design Tip #7: Plan for future maintenance
Do you love working in the yard? Landscaping packages range from low to high maintenance. Many homeowners are opting to add their own landscaping, rather than pay for a landscaping package over 30 years.
More surveys show that home buyers are integrating vegetable gardens in their backyard - consider where you might like to place a garden or integrate particular types of plants, especially if you are starting with an open space to work with such as a large, fenced in lot.
More 2014 Raleigh New Home Trends