Beyond adding value to your property, outdoor kitchens are as much about beauty as they are about functionality. Whether you only cook outdoors when the weather is beautiful or if you're a year-round grill master, an outdoor kitchen can bring years of enjoyment and variety to the dinner table. The following items are things you should keep in mind when planning the addition of an outdoor kitchen for your home.
A great place to start your plan is by making a list of all the elements you would like included in your outdoor kitchen. Think big and long-term. Do you want things like a grill, sink, an island, gas cooktop, pizza oven, refrigerator, dining space or a bar? If incorporating all of your wish list items breaks the bank, split your list into "must have" and "nice to have" items. This doesn't mean you have to give up on the "nice to have" items. When working with your designer, talk about ways to add the "nice to have" items at a later date so he or she can create a layout to accommodate future additions.
In terms of style, outdoor kitchens can be made to fit in with any style you can think of, but you'll want to talk with your designer, so you pick the right materials to match your tastes, as well as to complement the aesthetic of your home and yard. Are you into a sleek, modern look? Or, do you prefer a more rustic "out in the woods" kind of finish? Different styles have their respective costs, but your designer can help you find the materials that fit within your budget and achieve your aesthetic goals.
When planning your outdoor kitchen, carefully consider the amount of square footage needed. You won't want your new outdoor kitchen to overwhelm your yard by being too large. Instead, it should be proportionate to the size of your home and leave plenty of room for people to socialize (kitchens, indoors or out, are natural gathering spots). Another space requirement you will want to consider is whether you have room to allow for seating. Do you have enough space for food prep or will you do that indoors? Is there adequate space for walking around the outdoor kitchen to get to other parts of your yard?
Last, but not least, you'll want to give some thought to ventilation and lighting. Even with an outdoor kitchen, ventilation is essential to consider, as is lighting. There's nothing worse than trying to cook in the dark or being buried in smoke.
If you're interested in what an outdoor kitchen might look like in your yard, give the Graham Landscape & Design team a call at 541-729-8029. Our expert designers can work with you to plan the outdoor kitchen of your dreams.
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