5 Keys to Outdoor Room Design

So, you’re staring at your outdoor space, maybe a wooden deck or concrete pad and thinking: “I must be able to more with this.”
Does that thought inspire great ideas? Strike terror in your heart?

You might be wondering where to start or how to narrow down your options. That’s pretty natural, we think.

There’s a lot to consider when you start out, but carefully planning from the start will make the process so much easier, and help you create a space that truly complements your home and your lifestyle.

So before you start buying new outdoor furniture, these are the most important factors to think about from the beginning.

Define the purpose.

Understanding how you want to use your outdoor room will guide the way you design it.

  • Is it a space primarily for lounging and enjoying a cuppa, or do you want to host dinners for friends and family (or both!)?
  • Do you want to be able to BBQ, serve drinks and clean up all in one place, or are you happy to do some of that inside your house?
  • Do you have a key feature you want to plan the room around (like a pool, pond, water feature, fire pit, etc.)?
  • How big will the space need to be to achieve your goals?

Consider both position and flow.

Are you looking for a connection or a destination space?  

Most people create a room connected to their house, so that it becomes an extension of the lounge or dining room: warm and cosy inside, open and relaxed outside.
In this case, it’s important to pick a structure that complements your existing home structure, and a size that works for the space and with your existing doorways.

However, you can also create a destination space, one set off from the house. It can be a private, shaded retreat with cosy seating, or a sophisticated entertaining spot. Often, this can be a larger space because you don’t have to consider the connection to your home, but you may use it less throughout the year, especially in rainy seasons.  

Whether you’re looking for a connection or a destination, ask yourself: “Do I primarily need shade, wind protection or shelter from the rain? Do I want privacy from the neighbours or from the main house?”

It could be one of these, it could be all. Knowing will help you plan the type of roof you want, as well as any blinds to provide extra protection or privacy.

Think about products that fit the space.

The type of aesthetic you want for your space, plus the furniture and amenities you choose for it, will help determine the best structure for you.

  • Do you want soft furnishings that are less weather-proof or stronger seats that withstand rain and winds? How about a BBQ – will it be shaded or stand out in the open?
  • What type of lighting will you use? Strung fairy lights, soft up-lighting along your space or down pathways, recessed lighting on the outside of your homes – all effect the planning and design of your space.
  • Will you need heating, either standing or mounted? Both have their separate advantages.

Think of the investment as you consider your budget.

It’s natural to ask, “How much will this cost? How much can I afford?”

But it’s also important to ask, “How much is it costing to not use the space? How much will it add to my lifestyle and my house value?”

Most estimates say that a designed or landscaped outdoor space can add up to 12% value to your home. For instance, you’ll almost always earn back the money spent on a simple deck; and you can earn more than you spend for a completed, covered outdoor space that enhances your home.

Your budget will guide the type of structure you buy and the furnishings you choose for the space, so think about:

  • What is your price range, including the absolute most you want to spend?
  • Where can you spend now, and what can you save for later (ie complete structure and installation now, while slowly adding furniture in the future)?
  • Is it better to spend more to ensure you create the quality, structurally sound space you want versus buying a cheaper roof that might only last a few years (hint: we say “YES!”)?

Choose structural integrity for an outdoor room that will last.

You’ve probably seen corrugated plastic covers with grime and mould stuck to the surface. Or heard stories of structures being destroyed in high-wind storms.

If you’re creating a room that can stand the test of time and ever-changing weather, you should choose a cover that is designed for your home, and engineered to work within your space.

It should comply with the New Zealand building code and come with a warranty that gives you complete peace of mind.

And, it should be easy to maintain, so you can enjoy your investment without the stress of too much upkeep.

Our flat roof meets all of these standards and can be completely customised to your home.

Got questions? Contact us today

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