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Home Building Articles

The Outdoor Living Equation – Vital to Home Sale or Resale

Building Savvy Magazine
DFW Metroplex Edition
Vol IIIXIV
Author: Beverly Smirnis

The Right Built-In Amenities

The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) 2014 Outdoor Design Trends survey found that homeowners remain very serious in their desire for fully finished outdoor living areas, placing a high value on all of the following outdoor amenities:

  • Lighting – 98.3%
  • Terraces/patios/decks – 97.7%
  • Seating/dining areas – 97.7%
  • Fire pits/fireplaces – 95.4%
  • Grills – 94.3%
  • Gardens/landscaped spaces – 94.2%
  • Kitchens and entertainment spaces – 92%

Low Maintenance Landscaping

As far as the gardens and landscapes themselves go, The Residential Landscape Architecture Trends Survey reports that 95.4% of those surveyed expressed interest in low maintenance landscapes, with 84.5% interested in native plants, 76.4% interested in including food/vegetable gardens into their landscape plan and 69.1% specifically requesting xeriscaping or dry gardens.

Resort Level Recreation

86.1% were interested in fountains or ornamental water features. 76.4% wanted spa features including hot tubs, and indoor/outdoor saunas. 73.8% desired a pool, while 58.6% sought sports/recreational spaces, and 42.5% were interested in outdoor movie theaters.

A Home Built Around Coveted Outdoor Spaces

Today's most popular home designs give thought to bringing the outdoors in, or expanding the indoors outside. The outdoor living area is not an afterthought, but an integral part of the overall home plan.

As new advancements in LED lighting have developed, past issues of narrow light beams and high prices have been addressed, which makes LEDs all the more desirable and available for providing lighting that addresses both safety concerns and design drama.

And as the trend for smaller, more efficient homes grows, moving glass walls can expand the square footage in a smaller living area by creating one indoor-outdoor living space. For example, Milgard launched Moving Glass Wall Systems in a stacking operation style to address the growing consumer demand for maximizing views and the popularity of indoor-outdoor living, earning Milgard a spot on the coveted list of BUILDER's Top 40 Products of 2013. Following the initial resounding success of the Stacking Glass Wall, Milgard launched bi-fold and pocket operation style options in a product line extension.

Utmost Value in Today's Competitive Marketplace

Refrigerate, prep, cool serve and entertain—Alfresco's open air culinary system brings the entire professional culinary experience to the outdoors, Alfresco is proud to be the only manufacturer of outdoor appliances to build all of their products under one roof, in the U.S.A.

Wood-plastic composite decking materials solve many of the limitations and durability concerns of traditional wood decking. Composite deck boards are a combination of plastic and wood fibers, and those with wood fibers fully encapsulated in plastic stand up best to moisture, whether from rain, pools, hot tubs or lake waves. Some composites are so durable that they can be installed on the ground, in the round or completely underwater. Composite decks are also easier to clean and more resistant to staining – no worry about splattered grease or spilled drinks, and because it can be bent more easily than wood, composite decking is an ideal choice for curved decks.

Crossville, Inc. has announced the introduction of Garden, a porcelain tile collection created specifically for outdoor applications.