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Make the most of your garden

If you're like many homeowners, you consider the patio an extension of your home. So it's fair to ask: Would you be just as comfortable nestled in with your favourite book or preparing a meal in your outdoor space as you would in your living room or your kitchen? As you contemplate ways to improve your outdoor area, think about projects that can both extend the hours you spend outside and make the time you spend there more relaxing.

 

Just as technology continues to make life indoors easier, more sophisticated awning systems, heating options and lighting can make your outdoor space that much more pleasant. Here are a few areas to consider as you plot your next round of improvements for your outdoor living space:

* Temperature control

One of the best ways to make your patio pleasant for more of the day - and more of the year - is to add simple temperature control features. If you live in a place where it gets uncomfortably hot during the summer, install misters around your favourite sitting areas to cool things down. Likewise, if you often find yourself heading inside because it gets too chilly in the spring and fall, a few strategically placed patio or overhead heaters can extend your patio season.

Buy do-it-youself mister kits at your local Builders Warehouse. These kits take around 30-minutes to install and then you're ready to switch on the cool !

* Shade matters

Awnings and umbrellas also play a huge role in regulating the temperature and comfort of your deck or patio. And now, shading options have become more sophisticated and easier to maintain than ever before. You'll never have to worry about damaged awnings on a windy day with an adjustable awning system. With an adjustable awning you can leave the days of fiddling with fussy patio umbrellas behind.

* An outdoor kitchen

No patio is complete without a grill, but do you find yourself making frequent trips inside for other prep work? Make outdoor cooking easier by adding a prep island that can be placed near your grill. And if you really want to go all out, look for options that feature outdoor sinks or small refrigerators hidden under the countertop.

* Entertainment

Well-placed speakers can bring the stereo sound of your indoor system out. By upgrading your system so it can be controlled from your wireless device, you can bring the conveniences of your digital music system outdoors and eliminate the need to get up to turn up the volume or flip to the next song.

* Take look at your lighting

High-powered outdoor lights on sensors might be helpful when you're bringing in the groceries at night, but patio entertaining calls for a little more subtlety when it comes to lighting. Consider zero-energy solar-powered fixtures around the patio for a gentle ambiance to light up your evenings.

Builders Warehouse offer a wide range of lighting options - for indoors and outdoors. Solar lights charge during the day and provide adequate lighting for a patio or braai area.

Now is the perfect time to plan for next year's patio season, and with the right improvements, you can make it the most comfortable one yet.