Planning your new patio

Patios are one of the best and easiest ways to extend your living space. If done effectively they can blur the boundaries between house and garden, thus allowing you to make the most of both by creating what the UK media seemed to have dubbed an ‘outdoor room’. 

In the cooler climate of the UK they give us the opportunity to easily step outdoors and enjoy the available sunshine as when we get it.  A well designed new patio will provide you with an area for outdoor dining and entertaining family and friends, or a safe place for your children to play.

Amy 4 Seater Round Garden Table

If you enjoy gardening or just like a garden splashed with colour but you simply don’t have the time for lawns and borders etc, then a patio is the perfect location for a container garden as they’ll provide the perfect setting for pots and planters. 

There are so many advantages to having a patio and as a garden furniture company, it is no surprise we’re big fans as they’re ideal for our garden furniture. However, there are a few pitfalls and it is possible to invest a lot of time and money in creating a patio that just doesn’t work for you and your family. 

The key to patio ‘nirvana’ is in the planning stage and Lazy Susan is on hand to guide you…

Establish exactly what you want from your patio

This is the crucial first step and its vitally important that you spend a good chunk of time deciding how you and your family will use your patio and what features you would all like to incorporate into the final design. 

For example, if you like to entertain and eat outdoors, you will need a patio that is large enough to accommodate your guests, a large table (with that all important chair space) and any other furniture you might need. 

To achieve max use and enjoyment from your patio, you’ll most definitely want to invest in a good outdoor patio lighting system, so you may need to install an electricity supply in the early stages so that any cables etc can be concealed and integrated neatly into the patio design.

If you have children on the other hand, then a patio designed with them in mind can provide a safe outdoor play area close to the house and easy to supervise. If you go down this route, then you’ll need to create a design with child-friendly surfacing and features, avoid any plants that are toxic, irritating to the skin, or thorny. 

If you’re elderly and/or have restricted mobility, then why not think about installing built-in raised flower beds or containers that can be tended from a sitting position, and ensure that you choose a smooth, but non-slip, surface for your patio.

Another key design criteria you need to consider regardless on who and how’ll you use, is the ease of access from house to the patio and from the patio to the rest of your garden. It is also a good idea, at this early planning stage, to give a little consideration to the type of patio flooring or surface you would like?

The type of material you choose will have a bearing on total cost and it should be suitable for both your needs and your garden.

Start by creating a perfect patio wish list

Once you’ve established all your patio needs, it will be relatively straight-forward to create a wish list that comprises the essential items, such as an electricity supply and screening for privacy, and any desirable items, such as a water feature or a sandpit for the children. 

Organise your wish list into order of priority with the essential items at the top, and then the non-essential, but desirable items at the bottom. This list will form the basis of your final design and help to ensure you don’t go over any budget you might want to set yourself.

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