One of the many advantages to living in the D.C. metro area is the presence of four defined seasons, paired with a fairly moderate climate that allows us to enjoy the great outdoors most of—if not all of— the year. If you’re building a new home in the area, make sure your new build has a built-in outdoor space that will make it easy for you to take advantage of the beautiful weather. Here are five ideas you may want to talk about with your builder.
Nothing says southern living quite like a beautiful open-air front porch. When planning your new build, you’ll likely have the option to choose not only your base floor plan and options, but also your front elevation.
Choosing a front elevation that possibly substitutes a few square feet inside for a beautiful front porch will extend your outdoor living space and also create a stage for your home that you can use to bring major curb appeal—not to mention enjoy with a cup of coffee and a book or neighborly chat.
Enhanced patio area
Some new builds will include a patio or deck, but you’ll generally find them to be builder grade. If you know you’ll use this area and love it, consider upgrading a standard concrete slab to a beautiful paver patio or stamped concrete. You might also be able to add some square footage to build in space for some additional seating.
While they’re typically not included in your home’s base cost, many builders will offer fences as an enhancement (for an additional cost). Having one installed right away may come with some savings and can enhance your enjoyment of your yard from day one—especially if you have kids.
Covered or screened-in porch
Almost always an add-on option, covered and screened-in porches are a surefire way to extend your space. There are numerous sizes, finishes, and materials used, and your selections will impact your final price point. Consider elevated ceilings, a built-in fireplace, and even wiring for a television to turn this space into a true extension of your home.
Landscaping and traffic patterns
Most new builds come with some level of basic landscaping, which usually involves plants and planting beds near the home as well as a few strategically placed trees. Consider how you’ll want to use your yard and communicate it with your builder so you can collaborate on a plan.
If you know you want an expansive area for an eventual outdoor play set or games of soccer in the yard, make sure trees aren’t placed in the middle of it. If you’ll want a bit of privacy for an eventual hot tub or lower conversation area, consider upgrading your package to build shrubs or a patio in that area. A bit of forethought up front can save you a headache and lots of wasted dollars down the road.