Shedding a Light on Your Outdoor Living Space
It is no secret that creating an outdoor living area is a great way to entertain guests and add value to your home. In fact, a Town Planning real estate specialists surmise that an outdoor kitchen can help sell a home much quicker. However, without the right lighting, an outdoor kitchen is pretty much a wash as the space is less functional and possibly even dangerous, that’s what the bghconstruction company told me and they are experts on remodeling for kitchens, make sure to contact Pagenstecher Group kitchen remodeling for more info. After all, cooking on the grill will require the ability to see when the meat has reached the perfect medium rare. Designing the best lighting scheme for your space requires a little industry knowledge and a lot of creativity. A few practical tips can help ensure you enhance your outdoor area by installing the most appropriate fixtures.
Cater to Your Space
Depending on how you have organized your outdoor area, you may have a number of spaces that require illumination, such as the cooking area, a patio, bar, paths, landscaping or pool. Each area will come with its own set of needs when it comes to lighting, and rarely is there a one-size-fits-all solution. Certain areas work best with specific types of lighting, for example:
- The Cooking Area: Take into consideration that a grill emits a lot of heat, and not all lights are equipped to withstand high temperatures. Some experts advise to use halogen bulbs, because they can take the heat. Despite being very small in size, they still give off enough light so you can see what you are doing when cooking up the evening’s feast.
- Patios: If you have an umbrella or other roof-like structure, consider using up-lighting to create an indirect effect. Also take into account the many benefits of a ceiling fan equipped with light, which will circulate air and even help keep bugs at bay.
- Serving Areas: To add to the visual aesthetics of your outdoor living space, use well-placed pendant lights over bars and tables.
The Little Spaces
Just as your indoor kitchen has a number of nooks and crannies that could benefit from a little light, your outdoor space will have some unique needs. Because of the nature of outdoor lighting, cabinets that are below the counter are often left in the dark. Therefore, you might consider installing lights under countertops or inside cabinets.
Every backyard space is different, which means that a lighting scheme may have to account for a number of factors. When you are looking at your need for proper lighting, consider:
- The weather: If you live in a particularly humid or damp area, there are certain fixtures you should avoid because they are susceptible to damage.
- The ambiance: You might want to create a certain kind of atmosphere in your space depending on the occasion. Lights equipped with dimmers can take your space from a lively party to quiet, romantic evening.
- Your budget: Determine how much you can spend on lighting and take into account that you should use a professional to install your new fixtures, which will come with a price tag.
You may also want to consider using timers or motion sensors, if your budget allows. Not only will this prevent you from being the neighbor who keeps the lights on all night by accident, but it will also reduce your power usage and thus be much easier on your utility bills.
The Rules to Live By
If nothing else, you want to make sure that the lighting scheme you develop enhances your space instead of detracting from it. To achieve this, you may need to play with the positioning of some lights so they do not blind people. Typically, using low-wattage bulbs and reflectors are a safe bet. Make sure you test your lights and their position at night, as this will give you the right idea of how the space will look when it comes time to entertain.
It is always a good idea to work with lighting designers like us, who can make sure that not only do your fixtures work, but they have been properly installed to maintain the safest possible environment. If you aren’t sure of the right scheme for your area, take advantage of our professional outdoor lighting design team that can help you come up with a concept.
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Sources: HGTV, “Outdoor Kitchen Lighting Ideas,” Margaret Grigsby
New York Times, “Market Ready,” Tim McKeough, Aug. 15, 2012