A common complaint when it comes to the home is lack of space. It doesn’t seem to matter how big a home is, it’s never quite big enough.  There are plenty of crafty ways to maximize interior space but now that the warm weather is here, homeowners have the opportunity to spread out…outside, that is.
Creating additional living space outdoors is one of the hottest growing trends in home renovation.  Outdoor kitchens, for example, once reserved for the rich and famous, are becoming mainstream. Rest assured, you don’t need a limitless bankroll to expand your living space outdoors. The first hurdle you’ll need to tackle is shade, because it’s difficult to relax outdoors in mid-July with the sun beating down on you. There are plenty of eye-catching options when it comes to providing shelter for your outdoor living area.
Gazebos have come a long way in the past decade. Generally easy to assemble, these sun shelters often have a removable fabric canopy as well fabric panels and mosquito netting that should be stored during the winter months to prevent wear and tear. You can find them at just about any major retailer and expect to spend around $250-$800 depending on the size and quality of the structure. One drawback with this style of gazebo is the sun damage that will inevitably occur. The covers often wear down after a few summers and either need to replaced or repaired.
For those who want to spend a little more, there are a variety of sun shelters on the market with a more durable polycarbonate roof and aluminum structure. Some feature sliding doors on all four walls not only to keep the bugs out, but also to make the shelter comfortable during those cool fall evenings. If you want all the bells and whistles, go all out with a shelter complete with built-in bar with stools, attractive panels and decorative lighting. You can expect to pay anywhere from $1,000-$6,000 for this style of sun shelter, depending on quality, size and style.
Another option for creating shade outdoors is a trellis or pergola. You don’t need to be a carpenter or even particularly handy to construct some of the pre-made options out there. All it takes is a few clicks and a couple screws and these built-to-last sun shelters create a big or small shaded area ideal for hanging out in the backyard. Make it more fun (and increase the shade) by stapling a few lengths of colourful canvas between boards.
Now go and enjoy your outdoor spaces!