Outdoor Design Ideas

Even though outdoor spaces are often overlooked, yard renovations and redesigns frequently pack the biggest punch. Your outdoor living area is your first chance to inspire and make an impression on neighbors and guests, so sprucing it up can give your blah house a much-needed boost. When browsing outdoor decorating ideas and remodel inspiration, keep in mind the following advice to make the most out your great outdoors:

Because such dramatic changes can cost a pretty penny, it’s important to carefully consider all outdoor ideas before delving in. Set your budget ahead of time, and work carefully with your designer to make sure you stick to it. Research materials and landscaping techniques that are appropriate for your location and style, and don't forget add the plan for the final touches, like outdoor decor and furniture, to complete the space.

What are my outdoor design options?

When making changes to your front yard or backyard, be sure to consider what makes sense for your home and the local weather. For those in dry desert climates, avoid water-thirsty grass and opt for less-thirsty alternatives, then invest in a pool that will keep you and the neighbors cool in the heat. For more mild climates, a pool may not be the most practical of outdoor ideas, but a hot tub or unique water feature could be just the right element for you. On top of thinking about climate, consider maintenance as well. If you have the time and energy to work outdoors every weekend, a flower or vegetable garden would be a worthy investment. If all that effort isn't in your future, consider a nice rock garden, pond or intricate hardscaping instead. Finally, think about what works for your family. Some plants and flowers are poisonous for pets, and kids should have plenty of space to run around and play with friends, whether it be grass or pavement. Ultimately, yards should act as outdoor rooms, so plan them that way.

How do I create an outdoor room?

During the summer, your outdoor designs become key for entertaining and should flow like an extension of your indoor space. With a few key components, your patio, porch or deck can easily be turned into an entertainment haven; after all, when the weather is nice, most people don't want to be stuck indoors. To make your outdoor living space really feel like part of the house, create an outdoor kitchen, complete a grill, prep station, countertop and mini fridge. To become the neighborhood party house, you should also invest in a fire pit and hot tub, which are both great outdoor ideas for those cooler nights.

If expensive renovations are out of your reach, new outdoor furniture and accessories are great for a cheap yet effective end result. A typical concrete patio or front porch can get a major makeover by simply implementing a few easy outdoor decorating ideas, such as new furniture cushions and string lighting, or some brightly colored pots and accent statues. Take a look at a variety of pictures and outdoor design ideas to draw inspiration for your own space.

Whether you want inspiration for planning an outdoor renovation or are building a designer outdoor from scratch, Houzz has 1,992,734 images from the best designers, decorators, and architects in the country, including Philip Babb Architect and Catalano Architects. Look through outdoor pictures in different colors and styles and when you find an outdoor design that inspires you, save it to an Ideabook or contact the Pro who made it happen to see what kind of design ideas they have for your home. Explore the beautiful outdoor photo gallery and find out exactly why Houzz is the best experience for home renovation and design.