The last year and a half has taught us the value of being home, so why not turn your house into the perfect oasis, starting with the backyard. As the weather gets warmer and the sun stays up longer, it’s the perfect time to transform your patio into an outdoor entertainment center.
Take Stock of Your Current Patio
Before you start, you should have a good idea of what you’re working with. Ask yourself:
- How much usable space is there?
- If you’re just looking to set up a screen for a few of your friends, it won’t need to be that big. If you’re looking for a more involved set-up, consider your square footage.
- Are there electrical connections nearby?
- If you want electronics outside, you’ll need to have an adequate power supply as well as GFCI protected outlets. As we go through this article, you’ll get a better idea of how much you’ll need.
- Is the concrete or wood in good condition?
- An entertainment center is only as good as its foundation. Make sure your patio is in good repair before building on top of it.
- Is the area covered?
- In Alberta, the weather can change on a dime. Effective coverage, especially overtop of sensitive electronics, is key. Consider a retractable awning or something similar.
Consider Your Key Pieces
What exactly do you want to feature out on the patio? Pick your top choices and design the area around those. Here are some ideas:
- Seating Area
- Tabletop Firepit
- Sound System
- TV Projector
- Gaming Console
- Mini Fridge
- Dining Area
Let’s Talk Lighting
Lighting can fill a handful of needs, so it’s important to consider early in the planning stages.
- Safety. Lighting up walkways will ensure your guests don’t hurt themselves when the sun goes down. Underlighting or recessed stair and railing lights are great ways to maintain the vibe while keeping tripping hazards to a minimum.
- Feature. If you have displayed art or a really neat gaming system, have fun with feature lighting. LED or spotlighting works well to highlight any of those areas you want to make sure your guests are paying attention to.
- Ambient. There’s something to be said for understated ambient lighting like string lights or Edison bulbs. They don’t have to be particularly flashy to be effective in bringing the whole patio together.
Bonus – Install Epic Audio
No entertainment center is complete without a few speakers. Whether you’re simply wanting background music or full surround sound audio, a couple of well-placed devices can make all the difference. Watching a film under the stars with great audio is a total game-changer for family movie night!
Transforming your patio into an entertainment center can be one of the most fun renovations you’ve ever done. If you’re looking to incorporate electronics, schedule a consultation with our team of experts to ensure you have an adequate power supply and properly protected outlets.