Is your backyard, deck, or patio not living up to its potential?
Your home’s outdoor space should be your own little refuge from the world, a space where you can host barbecues for friends and family, or just relax and stargaze, perhaps with a cold beverage in hand. Your space should be inviting and comfortable as well as functional.
If your backyard’s defining features consist of worn-out patio furniture with faded, torn cushions and a rusty grill, though, then you’re missing your chance to have your own backyard paradise. “Any outdoor living space, be it a compact apartment terrace or an expansive poolside patio, becomes so much more inviting once it’s been outfitted with a few creature comforts,” according to writer Jean Nayar in an article for BobVila.com.
Our backyard and patio must-haves include comfortable seating, shade from the sun, a table or two, lighting, and a good grill. Adding extras like fire pits and decorative accessories can help pull it all together and give your outdoor space style and character.
Don’t settle for just any backyard. Create your BEST backyard with these six tips.
- Determine Your Backyard Personality.
What do you like to do in your backyard? Do you like to occasionally grill out with your family on the weekend, or do you regularly host massive barbecues attended by dozens of your closest friends and acquaintances? What would make your backyard more comfortable, functional, or aesthetically pleasing? Ask yourself these questions to help determine your backyard personality before you start shopping.
The Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association’s Best Backyard Personality Quiz also can shed light on the subject by telling you whether you’re a Backyard Beginner, an Outdoor Enthusiast, a Patio Pro, or a Backyard Beast.
Answer all seven of the HPBA’s questions to find out your personality type and get advice on how to make the most of your backyard. The quiz “helps consumers hone in on what outdoor living upgrades will best suit their needs,” according to the HPBA. The insight you’ll gain from this quiz can be helpful when you’re deciding which products to purchase for your backyard.
- Give Your Outdoor Space a Complete Makeover.
Everyone’s backyard needs sprucing up now and again. Give yours a fresh new look this season to liven up things up.
Before you purchase any new patio furniture or accessories, though, make a design plan. Matt Blashaw, host of DIY Network’s “Yard Crashers” show, says lack of planning is the common thread in many of the backyards he’s seen that need makeovers.
Consider how you want to divide your space, and focus on defining key areas. “Deciding what spaces you need—dining area, cooking area, shady lounging area, play area—and clearly defining them can make a big visual impact on a yard,” according to Blashaw in an article for BobVila.com.
Get more expert deck and patio decorating advice in our post featuring “10 Tips for Giving Your Deck or Patio a Makeover This Summer.”
- Add an Outdoor Fireplace or Fire Table.
Nothing adds warmth, comfort, and visual interest to an outdoor space like a beautifully built outdoor fireplace or a propane fire table. “More than nearly any other outdoor feature I can think of, a fireplace (or fire pit or bowl) instantly makes the yard the place where everyone wants to be,” writes Houzz contributor Laura Gaskill in an article. “It easily becomes the focal point of a space, drawing friends and family together around its warm glow.”
Adding an outdoor fireplace extends your outdoor season, allowing you to spend more time outside when the temperatures begin to drop. It’s also an easy project, according to our retail partner Quadra-Fire. “Adding an outdoor fireplace is the ultimate design project because you won’t have to worry about tearing down existing walls, getting the carpet dirty, or ceiling height,” says the company in a blog post. “You can turn a completely empty space into a focal point of your home. Tall chimneys elevate the eye and create wonderful depth for your outdoor space.”
While an outdoor fireplace is a bigger up-front investment than a fire table, it will pay off in the end by boosting your home’s resale value, according to Gaskill.
For those who prefer more flexibility in their backyard design schemes, as well as a lower cost, freestanding fireplaces and fire tables that you can move around are usually the best option. Thankfully, you don’t have to sacrifice style for flexibility. Some fire tables, like Designing Fire’s Oriflamme fire tables that feature beautiful decorative glass, offer the perfect combination of function and style.
- Get the Grill of Your Dreams
A good grill is an essential part of any outdoor space, but to create your best backyard, you need the best grill for you. That means it’s time to replace that rusty old grill that always burns your burgers with a shiny new one that’ll allow you to really show off those grilling skills.
But before you start grill shopping, take a few minutes to determine what you need and want out of a grill. How much are you willing to invest, for example? What size do you need? What features do you want?
You’ll also have to decide which type of fuel you want to cook with: gas, charcoal, electric, or wood pellets? There are benefits to each, but most people (62 percent of households that own grills, according to the HPBA) own gas grills. Charcoal grills come in second with 53 percent, and electric grills come in third with 12 percent.
In 2016, only 2 percent of households with grills owned wood pellet grills. However, use of these powerful and versatile cookers is on the rise; an additional 8 percent of households were planning to purchase a wood pellet grill in 2016, says the HPBA.
Learn about the benefits of the different types of grills and their features in our post “How to Pick the Perfect Grill for You.”
Whichever kind of grill you prefer, we have you covered at Sunfire Energy Solutions. Our product selection includes gas, charcoal, and wood pellet grills from top brands like Traeger Grills, Twin Eagles, Big Green Egg, Napoleon Grills, and more.
- Make Your Outdoor Space More Like Your Indoor Space.
Your backyard should be an extension of the inside of your home, so take your design cues from there. Think of your backyard as your outdoor living room. Add comfortable, durable all-weather furniture from quality brands like Telescope Casual and Alfresco Home—and not just your typical table-and-chair sets. Mix chairs in with an outdoor loveseat or sofa to make your space feel cozier. Complete your outdoor living room with a coffee table and some decorative accents, such as colorful umbrellas, patterned pillows, outdoor rugs, lighting, and plants.
If you love to cook and entertain outside, think about joining the 10 percent of grill owners who have a full outdoor kitchen. “Invest in features such as a mini-fridge, dishwasher, outdoor sinks, seating, and entertainment systems like a television and surround sound to completely optimize your best backyard,” suggests the HPBA. Consider adding a built-in grill if you really want to go big.
- Turn Your Backyard into a Day Spa.
Your outdoor space should be an oasis, a place where you can sit back, relax, and let your worries and cares float away. What better way to do that than by soaking in your own backyard hot tub?
Considered by many to be the ultimate backyard luxury, hot tubs are usually favored for their health benefits, especially by those seeking relief from back and joint pain. “Hydrotherapy—the combination of heat, buoyancy, and massage—relieves pain by triggering positive effects on the body,” according to a blog post by our retail partner Sundance Spas.
Soaking in a hot tub also can help those who suffer from a chronic condition, such as arthritis, or from temporary stiffness from sports or injuries. Learn more about hot tub hydrotherapy in our post on “5 Little-Known Health Benefits of Hot Tubs.”
While many hot tub owners are drawn to hot tubs for therapeutic use, many also find that hot tubs are a good way to spend quality time with spouses and children. Think of a hot tub as the sofa in your outdoor living room, suggests Craig Shutt in an article for HGTV.com. It’s a place where you and your family can bond while enjoying a nice, relaxing soak together.
Sunfire Sells Everything You Need for Your Best Backyard.
Ready to create your best backyard? Visit our showroom at 301 East Stephen Street in Martinsburg to browse our huge selection of grills, patio furniture, hearth appliances, hot tubs, and more.
For additional information about our products and services, call us at 304-267-3029. Our expert sales team is ready to help you find the best products and accessories for your backyard, deck, or patio.
Sunfire Energy Solutions is a one-stop shop for grills, HVAC products and installation, hearth appliances, outdoor furniture, and hot tubs. We serve customers in Martinsburg, Shepherdstown, Charles Town, Ranson, Hedgesville, and Berkeley Springs, West Virginia, as well as the surrounding region, including parts of Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. Learn more at www.sunfireenergysolutions.com.