How to Design an Outdoor Living Space

Modern outdoor kitchen that has been freshly built

Outdoor living has always been a priority for homeowners, but it became even more popular in the 2020s. The pandemic forced everyone to stay home more than ever before, and they quickly realized how much untapped potential their properties had.

If you want to maximize your functional square footage and enjoy your property more, our experts are here to help! Read on to learn how to design the perfect outdoor living space.

Identify the Primary Uses for the Space – Entertaining, Dining, Lounging, etc.

Before you pick out materials or map out your outdoor living space, think about what you want to do out there. Do you mainly want a space to eat Sunday brunches with friends, or do you want an entertainment area for big get togethers? Are you more of a fire pit family or an outdoor bowling family?

Make a list of the key features you want in your outdoor living space so you can design something that reflects your needs.

Choose a Layout and Features That Align with Your Functional Goals

Your general needs are going to determine the layout of your outdoor living space. Perhaps you want space for an outdoor kitchen or multiple dining tables. Maybe you need room for cornhole or loungers. Built-in seating, fire pits, outdoor chimneys, TV areas – there is no limit to what you can do! As long as you prioritize your functional needs, you can achieve an aesthetically pleasing solution.

Create a Versatile Paved Area That Complements Your Exterior

The materials you choose for your outdoor living space should complement other exterior elements. You may pull colors from your siding or trim to create a cohesive design. If you’re planning to upgrade your exterior, then you might use your pavers as a starting point for your design.

No matter what you do, aim for versatility. You want a space that can change to fit your outdoor living needs, or something that will appeal to a lot of buyers if you sell the house.

Provide a Smooth Transition between Indoor and Outdoor Living

Consider how the outdoor living space connects with the indoor living spaces. This will not only impact your décor choices but also your walkway layout. If your patio is completely disconnected from your backdoor, the flow will feel “off.” If you have a patio right off the door or at least a walkway connecting the two, you’ll have a much more enjoyable experience.

Don’t Forget about Lighting!

Lighting is one of the most important and most forgotten elements of outdoor living design. What good is a living space that you can only use when the sun is out? Try to incorporate lighting where you can, even if it’s just some uplighting around the landscaping. If you have a covered patio with electricity nearby, you could use string lights or outdoor pendant lighting to brighten the space at night. Keep this in mind as you choose components for your living area.

Add Sturdy Furniture and Seasonal Plants to Finish off the Space

An outdoor living space isn’t complete without some sort of furniture. This usually consists of a table and chairs, and maybe some lounging areas to sunbathe. If you have a fire pit, you may have built-in seating or temporary seating around it. The key is to use furniture that is going to hold up to the weather in your area. Factor in the sun fading, wind and precipitation for your community and invest in furniture that can fit the bill.

If you’d like help designing and building an outdoor living space in Michigan, contact Mortar City Masonry at (586) 533-1305.