Adding an outdoor kitchen to your backyard is a project that can easily bust the average homeowner's budget. Between your own desires and the high-end outdoor rooms seen on television and on the internet, it can seem like every outdoor kitchen must be a giant, expensive addition. But, you can create a good outdoor kitchen that fits your lifestyle without sacrificing your pocketbook. Here are 5 tips for the budget-minded homeowner.
Limit the Size. The less overall space you plan to use for your kitchen, the less materials you will have to buy. From flooring to countertops to furniture, it can all be scaled down to save money. And, when you have less to pay for, higher-end materials might become more affordable.
Focus on Essentials. While you may see other outdoor kitchens with grand accessories like a fire table, pizza oven or bar, don't get distracted by fancy additions. Most outdoor kitchens function around two essential items: a grill (to keep things hot) and a refrigerator (to keep things cold). Throw in some countertop work space and you have the basic skeleton of a kitchen. If you want to add something unique and specialized, keep it to one or two expensive add-ons that you particularly will get the most use out of. Working with a residential hardscaping service can help you decide what you want to -- and can afford to -- include.
Be Expandable. Not using a large space for your kitchen base doesn't necessarily mean sacrificing entertaining ability. Choose a location where you can add more space when it's needed. This can include a patio next to a lawn section so that you can add furniture or a portable table when hosting large groups. Folding tables or collapsible countertops can also add kitchen work space when necessary.
Don't Hide It. Because your outdoor room will be smaller or less equipped than some, it's a good idea to keep it highly visible and easily accessible. Placing the outdoor kitchen directly off the regular kitchen or dining room will help you be able to make use of both rooms for cooking when entertaining. Placing it near comfy furniture is also a good way to encourage guests to hang out with the cook when entertaining.
Add Comforts. Even a small outdoor kitchen can seem perfect if you fill it with small comforts. At the very least, make sure there's solid footing underneath and some shelter (even just a large draped fabric sunshade -- for the cook overhead. Lots of counter space will make it more functional, no matter what you do or don't put in it. Add some fun accessories that create a decorative style that makes you happy.
Your budget outdoor kitchen can be the envy of friends and family no matter what size it is or how much you spent on it. The key is to know how to focus on the right things and forget the unnecessary. Contact a business, such as Davis Landscape, for more information.