If you like entertaining, or even if you’d like an extra room but don’t have the money or the space to extend, you might like to think about adding an outdoor room to your home this summer. An outdoor room can add value ad beauty to your home, but most of all can provide a great space for all those summer get-togethers! From style and design ideas, to which outdoor tiles to use, this article is packed full of tips to help you create the perfect outdoor room for your family.

Decide What You’ll Use It For

Does most of your entertaining happen around the barbecue? Maybe you’re more of a pizza-chef extraordinaire, or perhaps your entertaining style swings more toward the wine-bar/alfresco dining experience. whatever your entertaining style, your outdoor room has the potential to be perfectly suited to it. With a bit of planning and thought, you could turn your space into a custom-built personalised entertaining heaven. Why not consider a custom-built barbecue area complete with built-in bbq stools for all of those barbecue ‘supervisors’? Wine and nibbles more your style? How about a built-in bar with mood lighting and a cabinet for glassware? Maybe your outdoor room will be primarily used by the kids, in which case you’ll want something safe enough for them to play in, but diverse enough to be used for other purposes once they’re grown up!

Think Stylistically

The aesthetic of a room is largely determined by the way the design elements work in harmony with each other and with the rest of the house. The way you want to use your outdoor room, along with the design of your home will influence the style to some extent, but there will be certain decisions that you still have to make. Do you want the room to be rustic, modern, traditional? Do you want bright colours or a more neutral tone? What about plants and flowers? All these things should come into play, and if you think of the decor before you build your outdoor room it’ll make the structural design come together much more cohesively.

Be Weather Wise

Depending on where you live, the weather requirements of your outdoor room will vary. If you live somewhere with low rainfall and warm weather, your requirements in terms of protection from the elements will be less than someone living in a high-rainfall or cooler climate. Rain isn’t the only thing to consider however–things like wind, glare and dust can really affect an alfresco experience, so you may like to look into shade-cloth, retractable blinds or perspex roofing to get around these issues.

Choose Your Materials

Once you’ve decided on the type of outdoor room you’re going to build, you’ll have to choose materials. Sandstone pavers are a hardy and versatile choice, as is corrugated iron for roofing. Your outdoor room needs to be able to withstand the elements all-year round, because even if you choose not to use it in the cooler months the damage caused by water and wind can wreak havoc on less sturdy materials.

Once you’ve made these decisions, it’s time to put them into practice–depending on your level of expertise and the difficulty of the project you my like to get contractors and landscapers in, and once it’s built, all there is left to do is open a bottle of wine an enjoy the summer breeze!