With the warmer months arriving, an outdoor kitchen may be just the home upgrade that you are looking for. Outdoor kitchens are great for having summer barbecues, hosting dinner parties and enjoying picnics under the beautiful sun.
However, there are many factors that you need to consider when planning, designing and building your ideal outdoor kitchen. We’ll share some in this blog post, but remember – working with a reputable home renovation contractor is always the best way to make sure that your home upgrade goes exactly the way you want it to.
Make Good Use Out of the Space
Before you even think about designing or constructing your outdoor kitchen, you need to consider the overall function and layout. Your home’s overall property also plays a part in this; make sure that your landscaping is either able to accommodate or can be rearranged to accommodate a new outdoor kitchen.
Then you’ll want to think about what you plan on using the space for. For example, if you plan on hosting large parties, an outdoor kitchen with a lot of available space for seating is your best choice. On the other hand, if you plan on enjoying your space with just your immediate family, then a more compact design would be more practical.
Another thing to consider is the kind of flooring you want to use. You will want to select a durable material that completes the overall look of the area, can endure food spills and is easy to clean. You will also want to consider the location. For example, flooring such as tile may be dangerous for children, especially if used near a pool.
These are just a few of the areas you should consider, but it is important to truly understand what the complete functionality of your outdoor kitchen will be. This ensures that your space will accommodate to all your needs.
Decide on the Location
Location, location, location! Where you actually build your outdoor kitchen should be thought out thoroughly. Most outdoor kitchens will be situated near the house as an extension of the home, which makes it more convenient when hosting large dinner parties and eliminates the need to carry heavy plates of food and other items a long distance.
Other aspects to consider when deciding the best location for your outdoor kitchen are weather-related elements such as wind, sun and shade and access to other amenities on your property such as the pool or yard. If you want your outdoor kitchen to have easy access to your pool, for instance, you’ll want to place them close to each other; if there are lighting or shading issues with that location, you can work with your contractor to make sure the space is properly designed to suit your needs.
If you are uncertain as to the best location on your property for the outdoor kitchen or are unsure how you should design the area, let the contractor you have hired lend you a helping hand. A qualified company should be able to give you the guidance your project requires.
Select Your Appliances Wisely
When deciding what appliances to incorporate into your outdoor kitchen, there are some things you need to take into account. First, choose appliances that are sized appropriately for your space. If you have a smaller outdoor kitchen, for instance you may want to choose a smaller grill or storage setup to make sure you have plenty of room for furniture. After all, you want you and your guests to be able to move around comfortably, without feeling crowded or in the way.
Second, select quality appliances that will hold up in the outdoor environment. Many homeowners invest in ceramic and stainless-steel appliances due to their resistance to rain and other adverse weather conditions. However, if your appliances will be protected by an overhead cover or a large umbrella, the need for weather resistant appliances is not as necessary. This ties into our previous point; where you put your outdoor kitchen will also be a part of choosing your appliances. If you are not sure which appliances would be best for your space, your contractor can go over your options with you and help you choose the best appliances for your needs and your budget.
Choose the Right Materials
As mentioned before, the type of flooring you choose is important to the performance of your outdoor kitchen. However, the materials you use should also be visually appealing as well – you are ideally going to be spending a lot of time in this space, so you want to be sure it looks nice! In addition to having beautiful flooring, you also want to make sure your countertops, sinks, faucets, cabinets, islands and other parts of your area match your home’s overall style and are complementary to the flooring and to each other.
Natural stone products are a great investment for your outdoor kitchen. Not only are they durable and easy to clean, they come in a wide selection of colors, shades and styles, including:
Cabinets are another item you want to carefully select. Custom-crafted cabinets look amazing, but unless you keep them covered, you will see wear and tear on them due to wind, rain, and extreme temperatures. Stainless steel cabinets, on the other hand, come in a large selection of styles and are much more weather-resistant. Again, you’ll want to consider your shading and overhead coverage when making the final decision regarding your cabinets, but choosing something durable and low-maintenance is probably going to be your best bet.
When deciding on what products and appliances you are going to incorporate into your outdoor kitchen, it is important that preference and functionality meet in the middle. That way you will create a space that you and your family can enjoy for years to come.