Spring has officially sprung in many parts of the country. In other words, now’s the time to start thinking about outdoor entertaining. That, of course, also means outfitting your space with some patio furniture.
There’s nothing like spending a relaxing afternoon outside in the spring. Patios and decks are the perfect places to do so, once they’re well equipped with comfortable furniture that is.
While buying patio furniture isn’t unlike buying furniture for inside your home, there are several additional things to consider. Here, we’ll break it down and give you all the tips you need to start shopping.
Gauge Your Space
First of all, you’ll need to take into account exactly how much space you’ve got and also consider the shape. For instance, do you have a broad space or a narrow balcony?
The shape of your balcony, porch, or patio will determine what size furniture you can place. And, of course, you’ll also want to leave plenty of space to walk comfortably around it as well.
For smaller spaces, you may want to consider bistro-style tables and chairs, since they take up less room.
Think About the Weather
Where you live can have a lot of bearing on the weather, which is quite important. The weather can, and likely will, affect your patio furniture over time.
If you live in an arid climate where it’s hot and dry, wood furniture could splinter or crack over time. Live in a coastal area or somewhere with high winds? Aluminum may not be your best bet, as it can blow away in strong winds. Wicker may be popular in the South, but it really shouldn’t be exposed to constant moisture.
Overall, your weather conditions matter and should help you determine the best materials to consider.
Decide What to Do About the Elements
Certain types of furniture can be left out in the rain, whereas others shouldn’t be. Additionally, constant exposure to the elements can shorten the lifespan of many types of patio furniture regardless.
Covers may be an option, as is keeping your furniture under an awning or pergola or investing in patio umbrellas. Teak, resin, wrought iron, and aluminum tend to need less care than other materials.
It’s important to consider how your patio furniture will be kept when deciding on materials. And that doesn’t just mean whether or not your space is covered – the flooring (or lack thereof) matters too.
Soft woods, for example, shouldn’t be placed on grassy surfaces, as it may cause them to rot.
Consider Your Comfort
While certain materials may be more durable, they may not be the most comfortable or fit your preferred aesthetic. When choosing patio furniture, it’s important that you keep your goals in mind. More often than not, you’ll want to create a relaxing space for yourself and/or for entertaining.
If possible, try out the furniture before you buy it. If pillows aren’t included, you may want to consider buying or making some. (Just be sure to use high-quality outdoor fabric that’s resistant to mildew.)
Taking Your Budget into Account
Of course, your budget is going to play a big part in what you choose to purchase. To save money, you may want to wait for a sale. Alternatively, waiting until early fall to buy patio furniture for the next year may also save you a lot.
Aluminum and resin may be less expensive options compared to certain types of wood, too.
Yard sales, thrift stores, and online marketplaces like Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist may also offer good deals on used furniture.