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The Public Classify Outdoor Living Rooms Favorably

August 17, 2009

                    Courtesy of

Outdoor Living rooms have long been desirable amongst residents of coastal communities, and now more and more people are gravitating to the outdoor spaces surrounding their homes.

According to Walt Hibner, Executive Director of the Home Builders Association of Dayton, Ohio, "Now that we are moving quickly into prime outdoor living season, and while laundry rooms still rank the highest in essential features for new homes, the desire for more outdoor living space is not far behind.

According to research from the National Association of Home Builders, a front porch ranks fifth, rear deck sixth and rear patio and fenced yard 10th and 11th on the "must have" list of design and other features that influence new home purchasing decisions.

Further, a recent survey from a national energy research council revealed that consumers across the country are spending more time at home and more time living in outdoor "rooms." Based in Washington, D.C., the council is a member of the National Council of the Housing Industry (NCHI) - the Supplier 100 of NAHB.

Among the survey results:

* Half of all American homeowners (50 percent) said that they are spending more time at home than they were five years ago.

* Eighty percent said it is important to have an outdoor living space where they can relax and entertain.

* Thirty-five percent said they had a finished outdoor room, and 34 percent said they were planning to design one in the next one to two years.

* Homeowners identified as their most important reasons for adding or remodeling an outdoor room: creating a space to relax (89 percent); spending more time outside (87 percent); adding value to a home (79 percent); extending a home’s living space (78 percent); and creating a space to entertain (74 percent).

* In outfitting an outdoor room, most homeowners said that they were likely to include: outdoor lighting units (94 percent); a gas grill (86 percent); an outdoor fireplace or pit (67 percent); and patio heaters (53 percent).

Citing findings that well-designed outdoor spaces return more than 100 percent of their cost when a home is sold, the Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association recommends these five products:

* Commercial-style grills. Most grill owners use natural gas or propane. The grills heat and cool quickly, making them safe and efficient, with no ash or dust.

* Gas hearths offer a cozy touch and are easy to install. They include a range of fireplaces, gas logs and gas campfires.

* Patio heaters extend the use of an outdoor room into the cooler months. Most models include adjustable temperature controls and safety features, and many are equipped with lights.

* Outdoor lighting fixtures and lamps are available in portable, wall-mounted and post-mounted styles, and are easy to use in remote locations such as outdoor rooms."

Use this knowledge to your advantage.

These are my outside views…Marcia Blake