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How to Take Control and Organize Your Pantry Like a Pro

Categories: Home Design Trends | Posted: September 29, 2019

Think quick – do you have brown rice in stock? How about macaroni noodles? After spending time finding a recipe, making a grocery list, and planning out your meal, the last thing you want is to reach for a staple and realize you’re out… or worse; you can’t find it in the chaotic mess that is your pantry. Don’t let this be your reality.

An unorganized pantry is the bane of every cook’s existence. And the problem is, it’s so easy to let it get out of control. It’s time to take back your pantry and learn how to organize it like a pro. Here are a few easy steps you can take right now to tame the chaos and create an HGTV-worthy pantry.

Get a Fresh Start!

Don’t just move everything from your old pantry into your new home’s pantry because you had it at the last house. When you’re packing check expiration dates and get rid of the out of date, open containers, and unwanted items. It is much easier to build your stores of staple items if you know exactly what is usable from the start.

Take Inventory and Keep it Updated

Sit down and make a list of all your pantry staples, whether it’s old-fashioned oats, tri-colored quinoa, or packets of ramen noodles (don’t pretend you’re above reliving your college days now and again). Whatever you use most, put it on the list. Keep track of what’s in your pantry and what you’re running out of, and add it to your grocery list every time you’re getting low.

Categorize Your Food

While all your pantry items are sitting out on your counter, start grouping food by categories. Grains, beans, baking ingredients, and so on. By doing this now, you can add these items to your pantry at once and keep them together, making it easy to find what you need when you need it.

Put it in a Box!

Store your food in containers or bins whenever possible. There are two benefits to this: first, irregular shaped items (packages of chocolate chips, fresh bags of dried rosemary) fit better in a container, and second, it will be easier to move items around to find what you need. Use clear containers to store grains, flour, and other dry ingredients to see what’s inside easily.

Hello, My Name Is…

Make it super simple to find what you need by labeling those bins or containers. You’ll be able to give your pantry a quick scan to locate whatever it is you’re looking for, and you can also take this opportunity to practice your calligraphy. Hand-written labels, printed stickers, or even chalkboard labels add a unique touch to an otherwise bland space.

Hang In There

If your pantry has drawers (or you’re using a wide cupboard to store pantry items), make use of the doors. Add a spice rack to the inside of the pantry or cupboard drawers, or attach a thin container to the door. Unless your pantry is extra narrow, doing this will allow you to use every single inch of the area.

Keep It Up!

There are probably a dozen chores you’d rather do than meticulously upkeep your pantry. It’s just so easy to shove a half-full bag of lentils or packet of taco seasoning into the depths of your pantry, but that’s how you got into this mess in the first place. Stop making excuses and take the time to keep your pantry under control. Regularly take inventory, clean out expired food items, and put things back where you found them. You’ll be so much happier if you get into this habit.

It may seem like a monstrous project right now, but start it out in steps. Even just removing outdated & half-used unwanted items before packing up your pantry, makes a big difference when getting your new pantry unpacked. So get started and organize the pantry of your dreams!

5 Things You Must Include in Your Dining Room

Categories: Home Design Trends | Posted: September 3, 2019

Formal dining rooms can be one of the most forgotten spaces in a new home. You may have grand ideas about the dinner parties you’ll throw, or the cherished moments of a family dinner, but lives get busy, and the dining room is all but abandoned until the holidays.

Much like any room in your home, the best way to bring energy to your new dining room is to elevate its design. Make the dining room an inviting place, with simple, elegant decorations that make the prospect of dinner downright exciting. Here are the five things you must include in your new dining room:

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall

Not all dining rooms are made equal. If your room is boxy, compact, or otherwise strangely shaped, adding a mirror is an elegant way to open up the space. Even better, a strategically placed mirror can reflect and amplify other design elements in the room. Before you hang, hold the mirror up to each wall to see which view reflects best. 

Bring Beauty to Every Spill

Does anything feel fancier than enjoying a delicious meal served on a beautiful tablecloth? Simple linen tablecloths add instant elegance and clean elements to your dining room. You’ll be amazed at how well a nice tablecloth elevates even the simplest plates and glasses. And tablecloths are generally safe to put in a washer so you can spill to your heart’s content.

Presenting Dinner on a Silver Platter

Okay, most of us probably don’t have real silver platters passed down to us by our great-great-grandmothers. However, it’s easy enough to purchase a few serving platters that pair nicely with whatever dish you’re serving. Plan on getting a cake stand, large oval serving platter, and a few various serving plates for side dishes or appetizers.

Let’s Toast the Host (or Hostess!)

Hand guests the perfect glasses at your next dinner party. Keep glasses on hand for the drinks you often serve, whether it’s wine, cocktails, or pints. You can mix and match styles as long as you don’t go overboard.

Set the Mood with Candles

Sharing dinner with a romantic partner or loved one always pairs well with the soft glow of candles. Keep long, tapered candles in simple holders, or use many tea lights to set the mood in the dining room. Just be sure they’re unscented!

Whether you’re a big entertainer or just appreciate a simple, beautiful dinner now and again, formal dining rooms are a great space to design with soft, elegant elements. Add different pieces – a vase with seasonal flowers or a bowl of fruit – to help the room change with the seasons. You’ll start to fall in love with sharing meals with your family and friends in this room.

8 Home Decorating Tips You Should Always Follow

Categories: Home Design Trends | Posted: August 15, 2019

No matter what style speaks to you – whether you’re a minimalist at heart or love rustic themes – some design tips always apply. Here are some timeless home decorating tips you should always follow, no matter how you choose to decorate your home.

  1. Make Your Bedroom Your Favorite Room in the House

Your bedroom should be a calming, relaxing sanctuary. It should be a room you can escape to, a place you enjoy being in. Splurging here is fine, as long as you do it carefully. Spend the extra money on high-end bedding and pillows – you can reuse them for years, and falling asleep each night will be a luxurious experience.

To elevate the room’s design, choose a solid-color duvet or comforter and pair it with matching pillowcases, adding in a decorative pillow or two. The combination of color and pattern will make for a magazine-perfect look.

  1. Expand Your Home with Mirrors

Mirrors immediately brighten and expand any room, no matter how cramped. Place mirrors on walls opposing windows or other light sources to double this effect. Windows can double the visual square footage of a room.

Artfully place mirrors on your walls in a series or on their own to amplify any room.

  1. Let There Be Light (and Lots of It!)

Lights can do wonders to a home. For instance, you can immediately set a mood with lights on dimmers. Different lights, like overhead lights or table lamps, add a lot of style and interest to the room. Experiment with different shapes and sizes to figure out what works best – and don’t be shy. Combine various light sources in a room and see what happens!

  1. Bring Style to Every Room, Even the Bathroom

It may not be as glamorous as your bedroom or living room, but a neglected bathroom is a sad sight. Elevate the humble bathroom by using beautifully folded towels, tasteful art, chunky bars of soap, and a few decorative items. Consider lighting here too – you don’t want harsh or over-bright light here.

  1. Try to Keep Your Home Clutter-Free

Here’s a truly timeless design tip. Clutter in your home can add stress to your life. Try not to clutter the surfaces in your home. Of course, we all know that dining room tables should be for eating, not for piles of paperwork or books. Apply the same idea to other surfaces of your home.

Don’t clutter your shelves with knick-knacks or misplaced items. Stick to a few statement pieces and try not to overstuff your shelves or open spaces. Keep things clean and minimal.

  1. Your Couch Doesn’t Have to be a Wallflower

Here’s a tip most people do not think about. We tend to push furniture up against the wall to create more space in a room, but that can sometimes feel strange. We want to encourage comfort and conversation, not keep everyone with their backs to a wall.

Consider instead orienting furniture around a central point in the room. For example, around a fireplace, underneath a ceiling fan, or in a particularly sunny corner. Ideally, don’t orient your entire room around an entertainment system.

You’ll find this cozy arrangement is much better for inviting people into your home and enjoying time together.

  1. Natural Lighting is the Best Design Element

There is nothing better than letting beautiful, natural light pour into your rooms. Make sure you are capturing every bit of the natural sunlight your home receives, especially if you’re facing north or south.

Swap out dark or thick window coverings for lighter ones – both in color and weight. Thinner fabric will help the room feel lighter, even when the sunshine outside is dim.

  1. Use color!

Accent walls, decorative pillows, statement pieces. Try not to design a room with one single color or pattern. Mix and match complementary colors or patterns to avoid building a dull room. This design mix keeps your room exciting and visually appealing. You can use this as an opportunity to show off a particularly unique piece of furniture in your home or even a favorite art piece.

Keep these basic tips in mind when designing your dream home, and you’ll be sure to love every space in it. Remember to maximize natural light, don’t go crazy with the statement pieces, and take advantage of design tricks to expand your home’s many areas.

What’s Your Home Aesthetic? 5 Hot Design Styles to Consider

Categories: Home Design Trends | Posted: July 9, 2019

Let’s be real. We all watch HGTV and start judging our own homes with the beautiful styles we see on TV. Maybe we don’t always agree with their choices (carpet in a kitchen??), but we all wish our homes could look so put together.

Bringing your home to HGTV level isn’t impossible. In fact, it’s easier than you think, especially if you’re starting in a new home. The trick is figuring out your home aesthetic – what style resonates most with you and your family? From there, you can start putting together rooms with pieces that fit the style!

Here’s a list of 5 design styles to help you get started. Which one fits you best?

Rustic

Are you looking to take a bit of country out to the city? Or are you interested in playing up your home’s rural setting? Then a rustic theme may be right for you.

You can achieve a rustic aesthetic by combining natural and industrial interior design elements. This style emphasizes natural finishes and raw wood, touches of stone or metal, and leather or other natural fabrics. Stick with neutral colors and tones, with just a pop of jewel tone accents to really make your home stand out.

Minimalist

Minimalism is an extremely popular and misunderstood aesthetic. For many people, they associate this style with bare walls and cold furniture. But they’ve got it all wrong.

When done right, this style is sleek and elegant without fuss or noise. Rooms are sparsely furnished but functional, without loud colors or distracting patterns. Think of a modern art gallery, where everything is in its perfect place. If you prefer understated, carefully curated furniture pieces with muted tones (and no clutter), this may be your ideal aesthetic.

Coastal

We’re getting deeper into themes with a coastal style, which uses beach house vibes and coastal elements. If your home is particularly open and sunny, this airy and light style may be the right fit. Coastal interior design uses an ocean-inspired color palette usually featuring whites, blues, and green.

Natural lighting plays a significant role in this theme, working nicely with those soft coastal colors. Here’s another style that uses natural wood, often weathered and unfinished, and stone. Think rocky beaches and driftwood. You can even lean into this one with a few nautical accent pieces here and there – just don’t overdo it or your friends might start calling you ‘Captain’!

Bohemian

Bright fabrics, bold patterns, eclectic furniture mix of different styles and ages – that’s how we’d describe the bohemian style. If you love interest pieces, funky and memorable pieces, and are looking for a way to highlight your uniqueness, this may be the style for you.

This style boasts interesting mixes of patterns, contrasting without clashing. Low-lying furniture is another hallmark of the style with low-backed sofas, short coffee tables, and plenty of floor seating. You want bright colors and no empty surfaces! Consider this to be the opposite of minimalism – show off your funky, unique pieces on your table, mantle, bookshelves, and walls.

Mid-Century Modern

Here’s another trendy style that has lasted for decades. Mid-century modern aesthetic takes elements of the ’50s, ’60s, and 70’s, then mixes them with a simple Scandinavian approach. Function over fashion is a great way to describe this style, but that doesn’t mean boring.

Mid-century modern interior design features straight silhouettes, quiet fabrics, and organic shapes. These furniture pieces are classic and straightforward, which is why this style has been around for a long time (and doesn’t seem to be going anywhere). There are vintage, retroelements along with sleek shapes that highlight their crafted simplicity. Here’s a great style if you’re looking for something timeless, charming, and unassuming.

So, okay. There are hundreds of interior design styles you could choose from – way more than the five we have listed here. However, these diverse aesthetics should get you thinking about what you value in a home. Are you looking to make a bold statement? Feel relaxed and breezy? Or maybe you’re looking for something that will last through the years.

Whatever your aesthetic, you’re sure to find a style to match. From there, start picking up pieces and focusing on the overall feel of each room. You’ll have an enviable home in no time!

The Homeowner’s Starter Guide to Creating a Perfect Owner’s Bedroom

Categories: Home Design Trends | Posted: June 30, 2019

Let’s talk about your master bedroom. Here’s where you can bring your comfort dreams to life: the fluffiest pillows, the softest sheets, the most soothing wall colors. But putting that room together without a list can lead to a lot of trips back to Bed, Bath & Beyond after forgetting pillowcases or light bulbs for your bedside lamps.

That’s why we’ve put together a basic checklist of what you’ll need to complete your perfect master bedroom.

Start The List Lying Down

They say you spend a third of your life sleeping, right? You better make that sleep count. That’s why our checklist starts with your bed and everything on it.

It’s Time to Upgrade That Mattress

When was the last time you bought a new mattress? It’s recommended that you replace your every 7 to 10 years, but how well have you treated your mattress over the years? Remember, you’re putting together a dream room ready for a perfect night’s sleep. Consider treating yourself to a new mattress and don’t forget the mattress protector!

  • Mattress
  • Box Spring
  • Bedframe
  • Headboard/Footboard (optional depending on your style)

Dress Up Those Linens!

Does anything feel better than falling asleep underneath brand new, clean sheets? Pick up a new set (or two) of matching sheets, pillowcases, and duvet covers. Look for higher thread count, moisture-wicking fabric for the most comfortable night’s sleep imaginable.

  • Sheets
  • Fitted Sheets
  • Pillow Cases
  • Duvet Covers
  • Throws or Blankets

Decorative or Accent Pieces

Decorative accessories add a fun splash of personality to your owner’s bedroom. Match these pieces to your walls or drapes – go for bold prints or soothing colors, whatever feels right for you. Have fun with it!

  • Throw pillows
  • Patterned throws
  • Bedskirt

Brighten Up Your Day (Or Night)

Light up the room with more than just your smile! We’re talking about bedside table lamps, overhead lighting, and decorative lighting. Continue to tie the room together with lighting features that match the room’s style.

  • Bedside table lamps (you’ll want two!)
  • Overhead lighting with soft lightbulbs
  • Color-changing LED lights (strands or pucks placed around the room)

It’s Easy Being Green

Add a literal breath of fresh air to your master bedroom with some greenery! Vibrant plants are great for adding color and life to a room. It’s wonderful to wake up each morning to a sunny bedroom and a happy plant or two.

Here are some of the best plants to keep in a bedroom:

  • Peace Lily
  • Parlor Palm
  • English Ivy
  • Snake Plant
  • Corn Plant

Keep Out the Clutter – Put Your Clothes Away!

Nothing brings chaos to an otherwise orderly room than clothes scattered across the floor or draped over chairs. Keep your owner’s bedroom peaceful and calm by keeping your clothes inline:

  • Dresser
  • Armoire
  • Closet dresser organizer
  • Closet shelving

No two master bedrooms are alike. Maybe yours includes a bathroom suite or a cozy reading corner off to the side, perfect for a loveseat and side table. Once you’ve mastered the basics – putting together an ideal sleeping experience and bringing in light and life – then you can start tackling those areas. We hope this checklist has helped you start bringing your dream bedroom to life!

What to Do (and Not Do) with Wallpaper

Categories: Home Design Trends | Posted: February 28, 2019

Some things are better left in the ’70s, like vinyl jumpsuits and shag carpeting. But patterned wallpaper should not be added to that list. When picturing your dream house, consider adding wallpaper to mix in new design elements and style.

Wallpaper isn’t the lifetime commitment you may think. In fact, you can purchase sticker-like removable wallpaper. Wallpaper comes in all forms – bold and subtle patterns, loud and neutral colors, and even in textures like faux fur or crocodile skin.

But there are some things to consider about bringing wallpaper into your home. Here are some basic Do’s and Don’ts for planning and installing wallpaper.

Do Be Careful About Patterns

This cannot be stressed enough: Go easy on bold or loud patterns. While this type of wallpaper would be great as an accent wall or backing shelves, it will quickly overwhelm a room. Either choose a subtle, neutral color wallpaper for the entire room or plan on only papering a small area with something bold or bright.

And please, don’t mix designs. Too many patterns in a room will look cluttered and make the space seem smaller than it is.

Don’t Blindly Buy

You would never paint the walls in your house without testing out the color first (right?). Think of wallpaper in the same way. You may fall in love with a floral pattern in the store, but at home, it might look like your grandma’s kitchen. Unless that’s the style you’re going for, definitely bring home samples to test out. Make sure you look at the sample in natural lighting against your room’s furniture and flooring.

Do Avoid Just Jumping In

We get it. You find the perfect wallpaper for your dining room or kitchen accent wall. You’re so excited to see it on your walls you can’t wait to start putting it up.

But you better pump the brakes unless you want crooked or wrinkled walls for the next decade. Don’t rush in unless you’re a professional. It’s better to wait for an expert to help you install that wallpaper. You’ll thank yourself later.

Don’t Worry About the Commitment

One of the arguments against putting up wallpaper is that it can’t easily be replaced if you get sick of a pattern or get new furniture that clashes. For people afraid of commitment (no shame in that), there’s a perfect solution.

You can buy removable wallpaper in a variety of colors and patterns. Think of it as a giant wall sticker. If you ever get sick of a pattern or want to try switching things up each season, this works great. Removable wallpaper is a great way to add a temporary pop of color or style to any room.

Do Plan for the Future

Right now, foxes hiding behind trees may look cute in your breakfast nook. But five years from now, are you still going to love the look? Choose a style that will grow with you and your home. Trendy designs are best kept to wallpaper decals or artwork.

This tip applies both to the design and quality of your wallpaper. Be sure to pick a high-quality wallpaper that will last for as long as you want it on your walls. Unless you love the arduous task of wallpapering a room, you want a wallpaper that looks good for years to come.

The biggest DO of adding wallpaper to a room is not to be overwhelmed. Like picking out furniture or choosing which artwork to hang where, wallpaper is an exciting way to make a space reflect your style. It’s a great way to add color or texture to a room, and your options there are endless.

Must-Haves for Making Your Guests Feel at Home

Categories: Home Design Trends | Posted: January 25, 2019

You’re probably going to end up playing host at least once in your new home. Traveling can be stressful and staying in an unfamiliar place can be challenging. By making your guest room even more inviting, you can ensure a positive, happy trip. Here are some tips and must-haves for helping your guests feel at home in your guest room.

Closet Space with Extra Hangers

While most rooms include a closet, these spaces often get filled up with extra clothes, holiday decorations, or just junk that has nowhere else to go. Even guest room closets aren’t immune to this. Your guest room closet doesn’t have to stay empty all the time, but you better make room when people come over. Not only that but make sure you keep extra hangers in plain view. There’s nothing worse than ending up with wrinkled clothes because you’ve just got one hanger to use.

Extra Blankets and Pillows

Everybody sleeps differently, and everyone is equally picky about how they sleep. Some folks run hot while others shiver under the thickest comforter. Don’t leave your guests’ comfort up to chance. Keep plenty of extra blankets and pillows in your guest room to meet their needs.

Big, Fluffy Towels

Your guests are likely on vacation, so why not help them pamper themselves? Set aside fluffy, cozy towels for your guests. Here’s a hot tip: have you ever heard of bath sheets? If not, you’re really missing out. Unlike bath towels, which are fine for toweling off but often too small for adults, bath sheets are large enough to cover you completely. It’s a little comfort, but it can make all the difference.

Basic Toiletries

Everybody forgets a toothbrush, razor, toothpaste, or comb at least once while traveling. Save your guests from a trip to the store by keeping an extra set of toiletries in your guest room. After every visit, make sure you restock this set. This simple act can make you a hero to someone who realizes they forgot toothpaste at midnight.

Some items to include: toothpaste, toothbrush, shampoo & conditioner, soap, lotion, disposable razor, and a hairdryer in plain view.

Switch Up Your Style

Since your guest room won’t necessarily be used year-round, you can take some design liberties with it. You don’t need to match this room’s décor with the rest of the house. Add personal touches, like fun throw pillows or a big, comfortable armchair. Choose a unique rug or hang eclectic art on the walls. Just be sure not to get too crazy with it and disarm your guests!

When guests are coming, there’s a lot to get ready. You’re doing laundry, washing sheets, cleaning the house, all that. It can be easy to overlook little things like clean towels or closet space. But with these little touches, you’ll make all the difference to your guests.

Creating Zones in Home with Flooring

Categories: Home Design Trends | Posted: January 15, 2019

 

It’s a question interior designers get asked all the time. How do you create zones in an open floor plan? For homeowners without walls, this can be a real problem. How do you keep your home from feeling like one single room?

By learning a few design tricks, you can completely mitigate this issue. Instead of an expansive, flat room, you can transform your open floor plan into an elegant, bright space set apart by different zones.

Pros and Cons of an Open Floor Plan

There are many advantages to open floor plans. Without interior walls, sunlight travels throughout the entire level. It feels brighter and more open than other floor plans with walls separating rooms, which helps you flow from one area to another.

Without careful planning, however, the open floor plan can quickly lose its character and feel flat. Instead of separate areas – kitchen, dining area, and living room – it feels more like a giant room with different furniture and appliances on each well. That’s not what you’re going for.

Let Your Floor Guide You

But there’s an easy solution for this. You can separate each space, or zone, with different flooring to transition from one area to the next. By choosing different flooring materials, you can either set out a sharp contrast or make it more subtle. And you don’t have to break the bank with this either.

Creating Zones With Different Flooring

Make the separation between different zones clear with different flooring materials. If you have tile or hardwood floors in your kitchen, try adding carpet to your living area. These divisions help separate the open floor plan without the same oppressiveness of walls. It can also be fun to choose different colors or patterns from one zone to the next.

Subtle Transitions

Maybe you’re not looking for a sharp contrast between your kitchen and living room. Blending flooring from one tone to another is a subtle way to create zones in your home. For instance, you can use different stains or tones of wood or vinyl. This smooth transition from one area to another is more can also be reflected in your furniture. Play around with this idea by adding similar elements or accent colors from one area to the next.

Separate Spaces with Rugs

If your home has already been built with the same flooring throughout your open floor plan, don’t despair. Creating zones doesn’t have to break the budget. Instead of choosing different flooring materials or colors, add a rug. Your options are literally endless – with unique textures, colors, and patterns to add flair to your room. What’s great about rugs is that you can easily change them going forward. The same can’t be said about different flooring materials.

Open floor plans draw in beautiful sunlight and better airflow and can help bring unity to a space. Keep it from feeling like one giant room by using flooring to create distinct zones. Be as subtle or bold as you like!

Creating the Perfect Outdoor Space for Your Guests and Family

Categories: Home Design Trends | Posted: December 19, 2018

Outdoor spaces are perfect for entertaining. With the proper setup, you could spend an entire party outside, cooking dinner, playing games, and enjoying the area late into the evening. Here are some of the many ways you can spruce up your backyard to create the perfect outdoor space.

Let’s Get Cooking

Whether you’re hosting an outdoor dinner party or just grilling for your family, including a place to cook is essential. Depending on your style and budget, that may be a simple charcoal grill or something more elaborate, like a full outdoor kitchen. Be sure to plan for a place to cook in your backyard design. You’ll undoubtedly appreciate reducing trips in and out of the house for food during a busy party.

Pick a Chair, Any Chair

There are so many different options for outdoor seating! If you plan to entertain, be sure to include many seating options, from chairs to benches and stools. Having a variety of seats accommodates your guests while adding personal flare. You can opt for cloth-cushioned seating or metal, weather-resistant sets. Just make sure you bring in anything at night that can’t stand the rain.

Start Acting Shady

Most decks and patios are uncovered, which can be a pain during hot, sunny summer days. It’s not just uncomfortable; it can be dangerous to spend too much time in direct sunlight. So keep things shady by adding an awning or umbrella near your seating area. Guests can retreat in the shade while enjoying the beautiful space you’ve created.

Enlighten Your Guests

What’s the point of designing a beautiful outdoor space if you can’t see it? If you plan on spending any time outside during the evening, you’ll want to include outdoor lighting. You can set just the right ambiance with paper lanterns, fairy lights, or permanent pendant lights.

Curl Up by a Cozy Fire

Everybody loves a good bonfire. Adding a fire pit, or even an outdoor fireplace, to your backyard is a wonderful way to bring coziness to your space. Not only will this keep you and any visitors warm on a chilly night, but it will also keep pesky bugs or mosquitos away. As a bonus, a fire pit brings calming, natural light to your backyard.

Don’t Forget the Music!

Who doesn’t like to boogie down in their backyard during a party? For any outdoor activity – from raking leaves to hosting a luau-themed party – music is a welcome addition. Install built-in speakers to different areas in your backyard or rely on a sizeable Bluetooth speaker to send music outside. Just make sure you’re not keeping your neighbors awake at night!

There are so many options for designing your outdoor space. From choosing furniture to installing lighting and speakers, you’ll be amazed at your backyard’s transformation. How will you create the perfect outdoor space?

Choosing Between a Deck or Patio

Categories: Home Design Trends, Home maintenance tips | Posted: November 26, 2018

Customizing and designing your home’s interior is an essential part of being a homeowner. With all the time you’ll spend in it, you’ll undoubtedly want to make sure each room is perfect. But in this post, we’re moving out into your front or backyard. We’re talking about decks and patios – the difference between them and what to consider when choosing one or the other.

The most significant factors in this decision are maintenance, cleaning, and customization.

What’s the Difference Between a Patio and a Deck?

First, let’s look at the difference between the two. A patio is built at ground level and often directly attached to a house. It can be made from an array of materials, like concrete or brick. Patios are generally uncovered and don’t necessarily need guard railings or fencing. They come with more privacy since they’re at ground level and can be hidden behind a fence.

Decks, on the other hand, aren’t usually built at ground level. They tend to take advantage of a view and are therefore at higher levels. For this reason, it’s a good idea to put safety railings or fencing around them. Decks are usually made of wood or other composite materials. You can build decks on uneven ground, and they often add higher resale value to your property.

Even from these definitions, it’s easy to see why it’s a tough decision. Both patios and decks can be attached to a home or built away from the house, and both tend to be uncovered outdoor spaces.

Maintaining Your Outdoor Space

The first question to ask yourself is: how much maintenance do you want to do?

Since decks are made with wood, you’ll need to take care of it every year. That includes scrubbing it down, power washing, or sanding, not to mention checking for loose or protruding nails and screws. If you’re not using composite materials, you’ll need to check for splintering or peeling wood boards.

With patios, the amount of maintenance is certainly less than with wooden decks. But that doesn’t mean you can build it and forget it. You may need to replace stone tiles or clean the concrete now and again. Generally speaking, it will also be cheaper to build and maintain a patio than a deck due to the cost of materials, the elevation, and ongoing maintenance.

Whichever you choose, you’ll need to put in regular work to make sure your deck or patio doesn’t fall to pieces. Choosing composite materials for decks or durable materials for a patio can keep your outdoor space looking good for years to come.

Keeping Things Clean

We just covered ongoing maintenance, but what about cleaning? Though cleaning falls under maintenance, it’s certainly something to look at when deciding between a patio and deck.

Since decks are often made of wood, it’s common to get mold. After all, your deck battles all kinds of weather – rain, snow, and humidity. You can get mold under, near, or on your deck. It’s not difficult to remove, but you’ll need to stay on top of it. If left unchecked, mold could weaken its structure and cause major problems.

Patios can get mold too, but not nearly as often as with decks. Generally, you can clear your patio of mold by power washing. When it comes to cleaning, you’ll get by with less when you have a patio.

Customizing Your Patio or Deck

How much personal touch would you like to add to this new outdoor space?

While both decks and patios can be constructed in different sizes, shapes, and materials, you may run into some restrictions along the way. For example, using a specific stone texture or concrete to build a patio may prevent future changes, whereas wooden decks can be stained or painted to any color or shade that fits your home.

Changes to patios may be more expensive. If you’re looking to switch out the brick or patio tiles, you will likely need to rebuild the entire patio. But with decks, you can sand and re-stain every year if you want without damaging the materials.

That being said, you certainly have more options with patios. You can construct patios out of almost anything – stone, brick, concrete, pebbles, pea gravel, or rock. With a deck, you’ll be using either wood or composite materials. So, if there’s a specific aesthetic you’re looking to match, keep building materials in mind.

Making the Choice – It’s Up to You!

Whichever you choose, you’re sure to enjoy this new space. Whether you’re looking for a more customizable, elevated area or a private, durable patio, either option is a great choice. What’s great is you can add a portable fire pit, outdoor kitchen, or grill to either (just make sure you’ve got a fireproof platform for your deck!).