Outdoor Living

Planning the perfect patio space

Spring is near! While sleepy cold weather can put a damper on backyard planning, springtime is a chance to start fresh with a new patio or updated patio features. Here are some ideas to help you plan some outdoor fun for family and friends this year.

Patio pavers versus concrete

It’s nice to have a mud-free area just outside the backdoor. Whether a small patio or a grand veranda for entertaining, patio spaces make for a clean, easy-to-maintain backyard living space. Selecting the best building material for your space is both a matter of taste and budget.

Concrete is a cost-effective and durable option requiring little maintenance. Stamped and stained options help to beautify a boring gray slab. For stamped concrete, there are several stamping options that resemble various brick or stone patterns. Concrete stain can either be applied after the pour or as integral color added to the concrete before pouring.

  • Concrete Pros - lower cost, great for a cost-effective large area
  • Concrete Cons - tends to crack over time in some applications

Pavers are especially popular because of their custom look and durability. They do have a higher average cost per square foot than concrete. However, for many backyard projects, the cost difference can be minimal when compared to a stained and stamped concrete option. For smaller projects, pavers are an often-overlooked perfect choice. Fun fact: Pavers are up to four times stronger than concrete.

  • Paver Pros - customized-look, stronger than poured concrete, simple maintenance and repair
  • Paver Cons - higher cost, may come loose individually

The popular pergola

Often chosen as an affordable adornment to a patio space, pergolas are a pleasing addition to many backyard patios. The simple and sturdy architecture couples well with the subtleties of each unique design. A pergola can tie-in nicely with your home or provide an eye-catching contrast for an outdoor living space.

A few ideas for adding a pergola to your outdoor space:

  • Great place to add some overhead outdoor lighting
  • Add an inviting touch to a walkway
  • Create a physical and visual boundary for your patio space
  • Allow vines or other climbing plants to create a nice canopy

Outdoor kitchens

Whether a simple charcoal grill or an elaborate twelve burner gas cook top, few things beat stepping out to grill for family and friends. Some don’t stop there; full outdoor kitchens have become a popular way for families to extend their “livable” living space. Must-have outdoor kitchen amenities:

  • A grill
  • Plenty of counter space
  • Refrigerator or built-in cooler
  • Must-have seating
  • Keep the party going late with lighting
  • Watch the game on your covered or screened-in patio

Ready to plan your backyard makeover? The recommendations in this article have been made by Real Okie Outdoor Living, Tulsa’s professional outdoor design and build company. Get additional ideas or start your project by contacting owner, Tyler Funk by phone at 918-268-7270 or online at RealOkieOutdoorLiving.com.

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