Nothing beats chilling and unwinding on the patio. It can be the perfect recreational space. You can also use your patio as an extension of your dining room. With proper planning, you can make a reality of that dream patio you have envisioned in your mind.
To help you plan better how to build a patio, here are some questions to keep in mind which should lead you in the right direction.
Where Do You Want Your Patio?
How you intend on using the patio will be a primary determinant of where it should go. If, for example, you will be using the patio as an alfresco dining area, then you will want to have it near your kitchen, so it’s easier to carry dishes to and from the kitchen. Similarly, if it’s going to be a recreational space or lounge, it will make more sense to have it near your living room, such that it’s an extension of your lounging area.
Your patio can be any shape you want it to be. There is no rule saying that it has to be straight. You want to go for a shape that allows you to get the most out of the available space while enhancing your garden and home.
Curved shapes stand out. They add flow to your patio and make it look more interesting compared to a straight layout. That being said, remember that some of these shapes can be quite complicated to carve out, and you can expect it to take longer and cost more to achieve the final design.
If you tend to have so many people over at the same time for get-togethers, then you may need an oversized patio. On the other hand, a small or medium-sized patio will do just fine if you only ever host close family and close friends. You can set up some furniture on your lawn just to get an idea of how big a space you may need to accommodate your guests comfortably.
What Material to Use in Patio Construction?
There are several factors to consider when choosing a construction material for your patio. For starters, look at the aesthetic appeal of the material, considering how well it blends your landscape design as well as your home’s architectural design. It is just as important as the durability of the material, cost, and how well suited it is to your local climate, as this may influence overall maintenance requirements.
Here is a brief highlight of the top 6 most commonly used materials for patio construction:
- Concrete: This is an inexpensive, structurally sound option with no special maintenance requirements. Additionally, poured concrete can quickly be stamped or dyed to look like top-tier paving materials.
- Brick: Costs slightly more than concrete, but great for creating that classic look. You can choose from different colors and a range of designs, both traditional and contemporary. Bricks also create a warm patio.
- Stone: Nothing beats the natural appeal of stone on your patio. There is a wide range of stones from which to choose. They cost more, but whatever stone you choose, durability is a guarantee.
- Tile: Choose tile labeled for outside so your patio can withstand all weather. It provides a cool underfoot, which is excellent for those hot summer days in Minnesota.
- Pavers: An inexpensive and easy-to-install option. Pavers are constructed from cinder, stone, or cement. Offer good drainage and are also highly durable.
- Crushed Stone, Sand, and Pea Gravel: Perfect choice if you are not too keen on having a patio that is rock-solid. Pea-gravel patios are low maintenance, and all you may need to do is rake back the gravel now and then. The loose material tends to shift around, so ensure that you have a perimeter or border around where you intend to have the material cover.
A great way to make your patio interesting and stand out is by mixing the materials. Keep it simple and subtle.
Elevated or Sunken?
Change of grade is a great patio design idea. You can make your patio stand out if it is slightly elevated or slightly sunken. This change of grade idea works great if yours is a relatively level garden. You will have to build a proper drainage system for your sunken patio.
On the other hand, drainage shouldn’t be a problem for a raised patio if the slope is correct. Additionally, a change of level can allow you to add more features such as water features, built-in seating, and lighting effects.
Planning how to build a patio can seem like such a daunting task. But when you know where to start, the project is simplified. Ask these, among other important questions. Find an expert in Minnesota if you need the help, plan, and execute, and you can look forward to enjoying that perfect patio.
About Transition Realty
Transition Realty owner Steve Lehmeyer specializes in helping people manage real estate transactions in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. His experience in the Minnesota real estate market spans 20 years. Steve and his team work with clients to buy & sell single-family homes, townhouses, condos, lake homes, and investment property. Download a free home search app for your smartphone or search the MLS at TransitionRealty.com.