We've all heard that a patio area can increase your living area, but not all patios are made equal. And not all patios actually provide more living areas. A poorly designed and built patio can discourage use and deter people from enjoying the space. Here are some easy guidelines to follow to make sure you get the most from your Dutchess County patio!
Lay Out the Design and Plan the Patio Floor
Lay out the parameters for your patio, then decide what the design will be (using a landscaping company for help). If you are going to have an outdoor kitchen, you may want that closer to the house to minimize the amount of carrying that you will need to do. Also, you may want the living and dining area close to the outdoor kitchen. Add in some walkways and some paths leading to secluded seating areas for the finishing touches. The right layout will encourage you, your family, and guests to explore and use these outdoor spaces!
For your flooring (patio and walkways), consider using flagstone or concrete pavers (like the ones from Unilock) to add definition and beauty. The quality of the materials (and the quality of the installation) here make a big difference in how long you'll happily be enjoying it before it'll need repairs.
The areas not covered with patio and paths can be filled in with grass, or for a lush look, fill in with large planted and potted plants. Your landscaper can advise you regarding which plants with thrive in your area and your soil. And for an extra useful touch, add edibles in your landscaping!
Furnishings for Your New Outdoor Rooms.
You can furnish your new outdoor rooms much the same as you would your indoor rooms. In the outdoor kitchen, if you are adding one, you will want the grill, a refrigerator, a sink, and perhaps a wine cooler. Just be sure that they are built for outdoor use.
For the living and dining area, perhaps a large sectional couch and some small tables in the living room area, and a large table with benches for seating for the dining area. Add don't forget to add touches to enjoy the evenings. If there are movie or sports lovers in the house, add in an outdoor tv or screen with a projector or choose a built-in fire pit to keep everyone engaged (and warm).
If you have room for a couple of secluded seating areas, you may want a couple of comfortable chairs and a beverage table at one location, and perhaps a lounge chair and table at another area for a little get-away for reading.
A Roof Will Increase the Time Your Patio is Usable.
Adding a roof over the kitchen and living area will extend the time that you are able to use your outdoor living area. The roof will provide shade in the hottest of times, and protect you and the area from rain.
Adding a Swimming Pool To Cool Down.
Do you have room for a pool? If so, what shape will it be? There are the traditional rectangle pools, or you may want to opt for a more natural-shaped, meandering pool. If you don't have room for a pool, perhaps you would like to add a water feature such as a small pond or waterfall. Your landscaper can advise you on what will work best in your area.