Adding an outdoor kitchen to your home will expand your indoor living space for entertaining. Whether you prefer a casual outdoor barbeque with the kids or an elegant dinner with friends, an outdoor kitchen will provide many opportunities for outdoor activities. Here are some helpful design tips to help you build your outdoor kitchen.
Choose the Right Location
The location you choose for your outdoor kitchen will impact functionality, convenience and costs. Outdoor kitchens located on your deck or patio next to the house will add convenience and save you money. Since they’re within close proximity to your indoor kitchen, you can use the indoor sink, stove and refrigerator for convenience. If you locate your kitchen further from the house, it will need to be self-sufficient. It will require separate equipment, utility hook-ups and proper drainage. These extras will increase your outdoor kitchen costs.
Separate utility costs for your outdoor kitchen can add up to thousands of dollars. Electrical outlets and wiring, gas lines and water lines will need to be installed by a licensed professional contractor. Utilities must be installed according to city building codes with necessary building permits. You can cut down utility costs by locating your outdoor kitchen close to the house.
Choose Practical Materials
The building materials you choose for your kitchen will affect your budget. You can build the framework of your kitchen with a variety of materials like concrete, brick, wood, and natural stone like granite, limestone, slate, flagstone, and river rock. Concrete and stucco are the cheapest options and natural stone is the most expensive. Choose building materials and colors that compliment the style of your home.
Custom countertops can be made from concrete, brick pavers, ceramic tile, granite, marble, and slate, as well as cultured stone, a man-made material. Choose countertop materials that are easy to maintain and clean in year-round weather conditions. Consider a sealer for your countertops to protect against spills and stains.
Choose the Right Contractor
With any home addition, it’s important to choose the right contractor for the job. An outdoor kitchen can be an expensive project with appliances and materials, so you need a professional contractor with skill and knowledge to avoid costly mistakes. To find a contractor today, ask for referrals from friends, relatives, and neighbors who have built outdoor kitchens. Look for a contractor with professional experience, honest businesses practices, and prices that fit your budget.