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10 Things to Know Before Talking With A Patio Contractor

If you’re like most northern New Jersey homeowners, you love spending time on your outdoor patio. It’s a relaxing place to barbeque with the kids or entertain friends over a quiet outdoor dinner. A patio creates an enjoyable outdoor living space, but you can make it even more enjoyable by adding some special features to your landscape.

Why not turn your Bergen County outdoor patio into an outdoor oasis that friends and family will love? Take a look at 10 ways to transform your backyard into a showplace.

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1. Outdoor Kitchen

If you love to entertain, you’ll love an outdoor kitchen. It provides a great way to enjoy family time or outdoor parties with friends. An outdoor kitchen will expand your home’s space and increase your home’s property value. You can easily create a kitchen that fits your family’s needs and budget.

You can choose from state-of-the-art cooking equipment that will make cooking a breeze. The main appliance is typically the grill and there are some top quality grills available. Options include:

  • Natural gas grills.
  • Electric grills.
  • Wood-fired grills (provide a smokey flavor).
  • Hybrid fire grills (provide cooking options of gas, charcoal or wood).

If you just want a simple outdoor kitchen, the grill may be enough. If you want to do some serious cooking, you can add cook tops, side burners, rotisseries, smokers, deep fryers, griddles, pizza ovens and warming drawers.

Refrigeration equipment includes refrigerators with energy-efficient features and food-safe temperatures, freezers, ice drawers and ice makers, wine coolers, beer kegerators and beverage coolers.

Accessories include sinks, dishwashers, blenders, cutting boards, trash bins, paper towel dispensers, storage drawers, pantries, cooking utensils, lighting and firewood storage compartments.

Today’s outdoor kitchens will rival any indoor gourmet kitchen. With a new outdoor kitchen, your Bergen County outdoor patio will be the envy of all your guests.

2. Outdoor Spa

According to 2014 Building Trends, relaxing home features are one of the most requested amenities by homeowners. With today’s busy lifestyles and schedules, homeowners are looking for ways to relax and unwind after a long day. An outdoor spa will certainly take care of that.

By installing an outdoor spa, you can create a relaxing atmosphere that enhances your Bergen County outdoor patio. It will provide a cozy retreat for family and friends and a private place for solitude after a hard day at work. Select a quiet location in the backyard that’s free from trees and overgrowth, then talk to your Bergen County, NJ landscape contractor who can help you with planning and design requirements.

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3. Outdoor Fire Pit

Create a cozy fire pit on your Bergen County outdoor patio or in your backyard landscape. It’s an easy way to create warmth, light and a relaxing atmosphere. An outdoor fire pit is simple to design and install. It doesn’t usually require building permits, since there is no tall chimney structure and no design restrictions. It can be built in any size and shape and in various materials that will enhance the architectural features of your home.

The fire pit will require a fireproof liner and fireproof materials. If you want to provide a seating ledge on your fire pit, make sure your the finished height is 18” to 24”. If you just want to kick off your shoes and prop up your feet, 12” to 14” high is fine. An outdoor fire pit will create a cozy gathering spot for your Bergen County outdoor patio on chilly fall and winter evenings.

4. Backyard Pond

Adding water features to your landscape will instantly create a tranquil atmosphere for your Bergen County outdoor patio and back yard. There’s nothing like the soothing sights and sounds of water to create a calm feeling. You can build a small quiet pond near your garden or a large pond with streaming water that becomes a focal point in your landscape.

  • Koi Pond – A Koi pond will be a mesmerizing landscape feature that guests will love. The pond is shallow, so you can watch the colorful Koi fish for hours. Add underwater pond lighting, lush landscaping and a waterfall that flows into the pond and you’ll have a stunning backyard oasis.
  • Water Garden – A water garden contains a variety of water-loving flowers and plants that add texture and color. It does require proper balance and maintenance to prevent crowding and algae growth. Your Bergen County landscape contractor can help you with the proper plants and maintenance requirements.

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5. Swimming Pool

If you don’t have a pool, consider adding one. A swimming pool is a backyard feature that you and your family will enjoy for many years. It will provide great health benefits and fun-filled activities for your family and endless hours of entertainment for family events and special occasions.

A swimming pool will create a versatile backyard environment. You can enjoy a relaxing swim after dinner, a fun-filled summer afternoon with the kids or a great pool party with friends and neighbors. A pool will enhance your Bergen County outdoor patio and add great ambiance to your back yard.

6. Outdoor Waterfall

An outdoor waterfall will create a relaxing environment and help to mask unwanted noise. It can be built in any size with a wide range of materials like natural stone, flagstone, river rock or man-made materials that look like natural materials. It can be a simple waterfall that blends into your landscape or a large terraced or tiered waterfall that creates a landscape focal point. Many outdoor waterfalls also include fire features. The combination of water and fire creates a striking design element. Most outdoor waterfalls recycle water and are energy-efficient to operate. Talk to your Bergen County landscape professional about the many benefits of adding water features to your landscape.

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7. Outdoor Garden

Create a beautiful outdoor garden with plants and flowers that bloom throughout the year. It’s a great way to provide fresh flowers for your home, wonderful backyard scents and a colorful backdrop for your home and Bergen County outdoor patio. An outdoor garden will add a lot of depth and visual interest to your back yard.

Turn your garden into a showplace by adding landscape lighting, a cozy bench, or an outdoor fountain that spills into the garden. Your outdoor garden can be a colorful landscape accent with subtle features or a landscape focal point with stunning effects.

8. Garden Gazebo

Adding a garden gazebo to your backyard is a great way to create a shaded seating area for guests, a romantic dining area or a sheltered spot from unexpected weather while entertaining. It’s perfect for relaxing or drying off after swimming in the pool. It offers many functional uses and adds entertaining space to your Bergen County outdoor patio.

There are many gazebo designs and materials that will compliment the style of your home. Your Bergen County landscape professional can help you build a garden gazebo that fits perfectly into your backyard landscape.

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9. Landscape Lighting

Outdoor lighting is a popular landscape trend for 2014. It can have a huge impact on the visual appeal of your home and property at night. It can turn an ordinary landscape into a landscape that has amazing ambiance. Soft landscape lighting can accent architectural features on your home, highlight landscape details and add security and safety to your property.

Outdoor landscape lighting will enhance your Bergen County outdoor patio and make it more useable at night. Lighting up your back yard will provide a safer patio area for family and guests to move around. It will add ambiance for outdoor dining, parties and quiet summer nights on your patio. You can chose from a wide variety of low-voltage, LED and solar fixtures to compliment your home.

10. Outdoor Walkways

Outdoor walkways can add beauty and interest to your landscape. They can provide a romantic, winding pathway through your outdoor garden or a safe foot path to your pool and spa. Design possibilities for outdoor walkways are endless. You can build them in any size and shape. You can use subtle materials that feel like a natural part of your landscape, or contrasting materials that create color and texture.

Don’t underestimate the impact of a well-designed outdoor walkway. Outdoor walkways can have a major impact on the visual appeal of your property. Many homeowners underestimate the importance and visual appeal that outdoor walkways can create for their landscape.