The summer seems so far away and the idea of lounging in the warmth is just a distant dream. Yet, this is the ideal time to be planning how to set yourself up in style and create a living room outside. Moving your living area to the yard is a great way to enjoy the summer and save on air conditioning bills.
There are a lot of ways that you can set this up from converting a barn to actually building a structure. You can fill up the space you have available with an L-shaped couch, a bar, or anything else you can imagine. Your only limits are your imagination and the space you have available.
In this article, we will go over several possibilities so you can come up with a plan on how to convert some space outside to a living room.
1. Cover a patio
The key to an outdoor patio is that it needs to have open access all around so it feels like you are outside. You want the breeze to flow through so you can enjoy the fresh air and heat.
However, it needs to be covered so you aren’t sitting under the beating sun all day. The easiest way to do this is to cover a patio or deck. You can easily add a frame-up that has a sloped roof to keep the sun and rain off of you and your patio furniture so you can enjoy it no matter what the weather is like.
It requires post-and-beam construction with solid posts that can hold the weight of the roof. Make sure the roof is permanent as many people opt for a temporary solution like an awning to open and close over the patio. This is not a great option as it doesn’t cover the area as well as a bespoke roof will.
If you opt to cover the sides, try to make the walls collapsible so you can open and close them. Add a wood stove for the winter and make it an all-season sunroom.
2. Convert a barn
If you have an old barn but no longer have any animals then this is the perfect solution to your outdoor living room needs. Half the work is already done for you. What you’ll need to do is figure out if you want the walls removed so it is a summer sitting room, or if you will renovate it so it can be used in all seasons.
If you opt for the latter then you’ll need to make sure to shore up the flooring and possibly add some in-floor heating as well as adding insulation to the walls so you can stay out there when it gets cold. A big wood fireplace is an ideal addition to really bring out the coziness.
It could end up being an expensive affair but a converted barn has few equals when it comes to the coziness factor. With the ability to open up the walls with a big barn door you can get a lot of air to be able to enjoy it in the summer, too.
When you are entertaining for birthdays or anniversaries it makes the ideal location and will also save you money at the same time since you won’t need to rent out a space.
3. Define the space
You don’t have to build a permanent structure to enjoy some outdoor living. You can also just use the space you have and tweak it a bit. For instance, setting up spaces in your yard can separate the living space and make it fully functional.
Use some concrete, paving stones, or gravel to make the layout of the area you want to set aside for your living space. Then, add a grill or pizza oven to the area with some furniture around it so the cooking area is a focal point. You can put some large umbrellas over the area to make sure you can sit there in comfort even when it is very hot outside.
You have a lot more options when you take this approach as there are no boundaries like an already existing structure like a patio or barn. You are also free to place it in any area of the yard that you see fit. There may be a shady area that is going to work better for you than the patio.
If you want to make it even more separate for purpose then you can add some half walls around the perimeter.