If you've always wanted an outdoor room but are on a tight budget, you may think that it's just a pipe dream. The truth is, though, that modern outdoor rooms can be both beautiful and functional without breaking the bank. Here's a handy guide to getting all the basics of outdoor living on a budget.
Try Concrete Flooring
A good, solid floor is key to making any outdoor space useful. You also want to design an attractive floor that will add character to your outdoor room as a bonus. Modern concrete can serve both purposes nicely. Whether you have an existing concrete pad or you want to install a new one, you can use modern techniques to get just about any look on the cheap.
Concrete resurfacing can cover over your old pad and make it look new and modern. Concrete stamping can mimic the look of many other, more expensive materials - including stone, pavers, wood and tiles. You can create a fun design or add colors too.
Once you have a flooring plan, create a set of borders or walls for your outdoor space. Defining the room will help give it a cohesive look and make it more functional.
Depending on your budget, you could use low stone walls to form an outline for the room, or you could use less expensive materials like lattice or arbors. For an even more budget-friendly choice, consider building a simple wooden frame or pergola, then hanging curtains that can either be opened or closed for the weather.
Using one or more walls of greenery brings the outdoors to your outdoor room. You could use a row of simple containers filled with dwarf trees or thick evergreens. Alternatively, hang some heavy gauge wire from two vertical corner beams and plant climbing vines along the perimeter. Wisteria, clematis and hops are all fast growing climbers that will fill in quickly. Add Lots of Lighting
You'll need good lighting if you want to use the outside room regularly. You can find great lighting that has a lot of character.
String lights come in a variety of colors, shapes, and styles from traditional white to eclectic firefly lights to old-fashioned incandescent bulb strings. You could also use a portable fire pit to provide inexpensive light and warmth. Basic candles have little cost and can provide a romantic feeling for cozy evenings.
Whatever your lighting style, be sure to provide plenty of options throughout the outdoor space. For example, solar stake lights along stairs or pathways can help guests get to and from the patio and motion sensors ensure that no one is left in the dark.
You can make up for a lack of fancy outdoor room features like fireplaces and full kitchens if you add great accessories that do the work for less money.
A fabulous outdoor sink, for example, can be hooked up to a garden hose and drained into a bucket. Or you could cut a hole in an outdoor table for a large metal tub you can fill with ice for serving beverages. Use a simple rolling cart or a set of shelves as a mini-bar.
You might even peruse vintage stores for a unique pendant lamp to provide a focal point over a conversation grouping or a table. Brightly colored pillows, throw rugs and blankets will make inexpensive furniture feel cozy and inviting.
Once you get started planning your budget outdoor room, you're sure to find more inspiration, resulting in a space you'll love and one that you'll have fun building. Don't hesitate to get started today.