An outdoor living area is a perfect idea for warm summers and mild climates. These beautiful setups take some of the best parts of your living room and kitchen/bar, and combine them into an outdoor space (often with a canopy, awning, or other design to offer protection and shade). If you want to spend as much time outside enjoying the warm weather and entertaining friends as possible, an outdoor living space is the best solution.

The question is – what part of your yard would make the best spot to turn into a living area? Should you use an existing deck or patio, or build out a new space entirely? We’re going through the most important points to consider.

Think About How the Space Will Be Used

This is especially important if you want to have a wet bar with a sink, a gas fireplace, an outdoor TV, or similar amenities. Generally, these are all much easier to plan for if you are close to the house with easy access for utilities – plumbing, in particular, may be difficult to build out toward a farther-away location. That means that an existing deck or patio could make a great living space with some renovation, or any space that’s nearer to your home.

Consider Lighting Needs

Fridges and TVs aren’t the only things that might need electricity in your space – you should also think about lighting for when the evening starts getting darker. How will you light your space? Will you post lanterns? Do you want overhead lights? Would it be best to use string lights in the space above you? Is there anything that you need accent lights for? Plan out your lighting early, and it will be much easier to make other design decisions later on.


Safety is important for an outdoor space that gets a lot of use by family and friends. That includes plenty of places to sit, especially for those who might need back support or get tired standing. If you have any steps going up or down to your area, make sure that they are broad and include railing for people to use. Steps should also be well lit or have indicator lights to light the path.

Privacy and Purpose

Consider your neighbors, too! For privacy reasons, you may want to consider a more remote location if you are living right next to neighbors. This is also a good time to think about potential weather issues and any views of your garden or the surrounding landscape. How do you want your space to be positioned? Can you add screens or fencing for extra privacy if you need to?

It may help to think about how busy and noisy your space will be, too. A quiet hideaway vs. a busy, music-filled space may have different privacy requirements – and different considerations for your neighbors, too.

Would you like some professional advice on planning your outdoor area? Contact Quality Craftsmen today. We are the local, aging in place specialists, helping families throughout the East Cobb area create spaces that they’ll love both now and well into the future!