As soon as the weather begins to cooperate, thoughts turn to spending as much time outside as possible.

The best way to get the most out of your time outdoors is to create a living space right in your own backyard.

You can do it big or small, fancy or plain, expensive or on a budget.

Whatever you choose, here are some tips to create a space that’s perfect for you.

1. Plan the flow of traffic

Your space will work better if you designate a “traffic” pattern.

You can do this with an actual walkway, with your landscaping layout, or with strategically planted shrubs and trees.

Fencing is another great way to delineate your outdoor living area.

Talk to your contractor about the best way to plan the space.

2. Bring the fire

No outdoor living space is complete without a fire of some sort.

If you have the room and the budget, go all out with a fireplace.

A fire pit is another, less expensive, option that offers versatility you don’t have with a built-in fireplace.

3. Provide enough seating options

If you like to entertain, you have a big family – or both – seating is a big deal.

Put as many benches, chairs, and stools as will fit without disrupting your carefully-planned-out traffic patterns.

Think comfort, but add enough decorative touches to show your style.

4. Create visual interest

Speaking of style, little accents like a sculpture or a small fountain add to the appeal of your space.

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to do this, either. Check out flea markets, thrift stores, and even garage sales for interesting pieces.

5. Make a cooking area

If your space and budget are large enough, consider an outdoor kitchen as part of your backyard-living oasis.

You can get an island that has a built-in grill or opt for a moveable kitchen cart and a less-expensive grill.

6. Stay connected to the inside

You’re more likely to give your outside living space a lot of use if it’s easily accessible to the indoors.

Get your contractor’s input, but a couple good spots are off of your kitchen or living room.

You can even use one of the walls of your home as a border for your space.

7. Add a hot tub or pool

If you really want to go all-out with your outdoor living, install a hot tub or even a swimming pool.

How nice would it be to get up from the couch, take a few steps, and dive into a pool?

Of course, if you already have a pool or hot tub, you have a good starting point to base your living area around.

8. Block the sun

You want to get as much use out of your backyard oasis as possible.

That means you’ll need to find a way to block the sun during the hottest part of the day.

Some options are:

  • An oversized umbrella.
  • A covering made of lightweight fabric.
  • A retractable awning.
  • A Tiki umbrella or two.
  • Netting and hanging plants.
  • A large, free-standing awning.
  • A DIY canopy.

Outdoor living at its finest

There are plenty of ways to create an outdoor living space that’s both functional, fun, and visually stunning.

Talk to a trusted contractor about options for the layout, including an outdoor kitchen, if you want a cooking space outside.

Provide enough seating to create wonderful memories with family and friends.

Whether you have a lot of money to spend or you’re on a tight budget, you can enjoy an outdoor living space.

For help remodeling your home, contact your local experts Virginia Kitchen and Bath.

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