Just because you do not have a huge backyard, it does not mean you cannot still enjoy many of the benefits of outdoor space. Designed and furnished thoughtfully, even a veranda can become a perfect outdoor living area. Our guide covers key design principals, as well as practical tips such as using a retractable awning to extend the usable time of your veranda. Follow it and your veranda will quickly become one of the most used parts of your home.
Let there be light
If you are relaxing with friends, enjoying a sundowner on a summer evening, it is a real shame to have to head indoors when darkness falls, simply because you can no longer see each other. Making the most of your veranda means being able to use it whenever you want and that includes in the evening. So, lighting should be a priority when it comes to enhancing your outdoor space. Choose something soft that will add to, rather than take away from, the pleasantly sultry feeling of a summer night.
Keep yourself warm
A little extra heat can prolong the usable life of your balcony or veranda, so it is worth checking out solutions such as radiant heating panels and patio heaters. Install one of these and your veranda will become a year round option for relaxing and entertaining.
Protect yourself from the sun
An even bigger problem than keeping warm in the winter is protecting yourself and your guests from the powerful Australian summer sun. If your veranda is in direct view of the sun it will be extremely uncomfortable, not to mention dangerous, to spend much time there during the heat of the day. Unless, that is, you install some kind of sun protection solution. Sun shades and awnings are an invaluable addition to your veranda and installing one is a big step towards making the most of your outside space.
Aim for indoor-outdoor living
A good way to ensure that your veranda feels inviting is to make the transition from the interior of your home as seamless as possible. You can do this by echoing some of the design motifs that are found inside. Elements such as furniture, roller blinds and colour schemes can offer inspiration that you can take out onto the veranda to soften the transition. If you get this right, you will have gone a long way to developing the perfect indoor-outdoor living environment.
A common mistake people make is to try and cram too much into their verandas. It is important not to try to recreate an entire backyard here. Consider how much space you actually have and work out what your priorities are. You are far more likely to use a veranda furnished with a simple table and a few chairs than one that is crammed with extra seating ‘just in case’ you have a party.
The simplest, but most important advice, is to use your veranda. The more you get into the habit of using the space, the more you will want to. Start taking your meals on your veranda, not just once in a while but every day. And if friends pop round, steer them outside rather than heading for the lounge. Making the most of your outside space is as much about adjusting your own mentality as it is about the veranda itself.