Many people love spending their time outdoors, especially if the weather is pleasant and mild. Patios and outdoor decks are one of the most popular outdoor improvement projects and for good reason: Not only do they improve curb appeal, but they can also boost the quality of life. Patios expand the overall living space of the property and provide a dedicated space for entertainment and relaxation. That’s why many businesses invest in functional outdoor features.
However, updating your outdoor spaces is a huge undertaking. Commercial landscaping services can help you build the lawn and garden of your dreams. You’ll also need to buy outdoor furniture for your patio. Unfortunately, choosing patio furniture isn’t the same as picking out a new couch for the living room.
Whether you’re furnishing a rustic bistro or a private nook, you need to make sure you pick the right pieces for outdoor areas. Here are a few tips to get you started.
Keep the weather in mind
The weather in your area limits the type of furniture you can get. Is it hot and dry, or is it warm and humid? Does it rain often? These are just some questions you need to answer before choosing furniture pieces for outdoor areas. Keep in mind that temperature fluctuations affect the integrity of natural materials, so it pays to prioritize quality over design.
For instance, hot and dry weather can make some types of wood crack and splinter prematurely. Some metal fixtures can corrode faster in humid conditions. Aluminum furniture, while light, won’t last very long in areas with strong winds. Also, certain types of wood, such as wicker, degrade faster in areas where it rains a lot.
Consider space and harmony
Another consideration you have to make is the amount of space you have and how the fixtures will fit in it. Pieces that fit in a long, narrow corridor might not necessarily work well with a short, wide deck. The sizes of the furniture you choose are dictated by the shape and area of the space. You don’t want a large couch to overwhelm a cramped space and there should be enough space around the furniture to allow for easy movement.
For small spaces, use a bar set instead of a regular dining table. Bar tables are designed to take up little space, and stools take up less footprint than dining chairs. You can also look at chairs and tables designed for cafes and bistros since they also have a smaller footprint.
Location is everything
The location of the pieces determines the material you need to use. Is the area exposed to the elements or does it have a covering like a roof? Will the furniture rest on a soft surface such as the lawn on a hard surface like a concrete slab? Understanding the location helps you choose the material that works best with the space.
Softwoods are to be avoided on soft surfaces such as grass and in an exposed area. Wood absorbs moisture, and the moist ground can speed up natural decay. Moisture also hastens the corrosion process in some metals. If you need some level of protection from the elements, consider investing in an outdoor umbrella.
Choose materials that are easy to clean and maintain
What kind of materials do you want for your outdoor furniture? I’ve already mentioned that weather, location, and space play a big role in determining if a material is compatible with your outdoor space. You don’t want to spend a small fortune on a vintage wooden set that will rot after a few months.
The amount of maintenance the piece requires is also something you might want to consider. Some materials, such as plastic, marble, and aluminum, are easy to clean and maintain. Another popular option is wrought iron: it lasts forever and is resistant to heat and moisture. Finally, furniture made of resin is also moisture-resistant and is available in a wide variety of finishes and colors.
The bottom line
These are just some things you need to bear in mind when shopping for outdoor furniture. Choosing pieces for outdoor spaces requires a lot of thought and consideration. You have to consider factors such as moisture, wind, and heat. But if you make the right choices, you can make your patio or balcony a more functional and relaxing space.