Remember when having people over during the summer wasn’t much more than a drink and a burger while you had a neighborly chat and watched the kids play? Things were simpler then. These days, backyards have upped the ante as homeowners are much more receptive to transforming their backyard into an extension of the home…the perfect outdoor living space. Merging all of the indoor comforts into outdoor spaces is leading homeowners to shift their priorities when it comes to their own enjoyment and the features included. Through client conversations and wishlists, along with a bit of expertise and prediction, this is what we see will be on the horizon for outdoor living in 2017.
Raise the Roof
Since you are an avid MasterPLAN blog reader, I am sure you can recall that we named roof systems as a top trend in 2016, but this is a feature that we don’t foresee going away any time soon. The reason is simple; having a roof in your outdoor living space provides tons of benefits to you, your family, friends and even pets. On the hottest days, you have the roof for shade. On the wettest days, you have the roof for protection. Roof systems extend your time outside, rather than having to retreat when the weather is less than perfect, and as an added bonus, they are fully customizable. Would you like to be able to enjoy music outdoors or even watch the big game? By having a roof system to protect your entertainment investment, you won’t have to worry about the forecast. Skylights, ceiling fans, recessed lights, feature wall integration…. the possibilities are limitless to create the outdoor space that you have always dreamed of.
Functional and Fantastic Feature Walls
Speaking of feature walls, did you know they are fully customizable too? Outdoor feature walls are typically a vertical extension of the roof system, which comes with its own set of benefits. Feature walls are great for privacy if you live close to your neighbors, they can block the intense rays from the rising or setting sun, and they create a hugely helpful wind break if you live in an open area. The versatility of a feature wall all depends on how you would like to utilize it within your space. You may have it connecting to two side structures to create a private little poolside grotto area, or you may want it to be a vertical garden wall complete with irrigation, herbs and veggies! Function and aesthetic combine to conform to your family yet set itself apart from any other space on the block…a true must-have for 2017!
LED is for Me!
Outdoor lighting isn’t a novel idea, but the technology behind outdoor lighting is becoming better and more efficient as time rolls along. Integrating outdoor lighting extends the time you spend outside, creates landscape drama when the sun goes down and it also help guide your steps so you don’t have any spills, stumbles or stubbed toes. Perfectly positioned LED lighting creates a dramatic and almost romantic ambiance, giving your outdoor living space more exposure and envious panache at night. Integrating or even upgrading your old landscape lighting system to LED lighting is a no-brainer. LED’s give a truer color, longer lasting bulb and you will notice the energy conservation in your next electric bill. These fixtures can be seen not only in landscape lighting but also in masonry, deck and patio projects, making LED the ultimate in resourcefulness and versatility. Consider LED lighting to be the icing on the cake when it comes to your 2017 backyard transformation; yes cake is still good without icing, but icing completes the treat!
It truly is amazing where technology is heading and what smart phones and mobile devices are capable of. Your smart phone has the capability to manage many pieces of your daily routine and outdoor living is no exception; great technology doesn’t have to stop at the door! Integrating Wi-Fi controls to your outdoor audio-video packages lets you enjoy your party without having to leave to control the volume or channel! There are also specific outdoor lighting systems, fire feature, irrigation and water features that can be controlled by a smart phone with the opening of an app! While most needs can be taken care of with timers, you can go one step further and have the controls at your fingertips from anywhere in the world. If you like new tech, talk to your landscape designer about smart integration into your backyard projects this year!
Wherever your backyard dreams take you, be sure to talk to the right professionals to turn your dream into a reality! While the 2017 outdoor trends seem to be leaning in the direction of distinctive and custom-made, opening a conversation with your landscape designer about budget is key. While most think that “custom” is a synonym for expensive, this is not always the case. At MasterPLAN Landscape Design, we pride ourselves with having our clients’ best interests in mind and providing options and clever solutions for functional and beautiful outdoor living spaces and take reasonable budgets into consideration. Reach out to MasterPLAN to talk about your 2017 outdoor wishlist, together we can create the outdoor living space you have always dreamed of!