Eight Easy Steps to your Ultimate Alfresco – Step 5
The final design, your project plan and your investment are all finalised.
It’s almost build time!
To begin, you need a building contract, which we prepare and provide you with. All you need to do at this stage is sign the contract and pay a deposit – and then your alfresco project begins in earnest.
After that, you receive a copy of the building contract so you will have all the specifications of your alfresco area, its’ construction and an introduction to the team.
You will know exactly what you are investing in, and how the project will progress.
So, if you are looking for a team to help you create your dream alfresco area, contact us. We’re here to help you make your outdoor dining and entertainment dream a reality.
Find out more about the other steps of your Eight Easy Steps to your Ultimate Alfresco.
Stean Nicholls is a renowned corporate company and has become a widely recognised and highly successful real estate brand within the Albury/Wodonga area. They have kindly shared how alfresco areas add value to your home, from their perspective.
When potential purchasers first inspect a home, they often spend a large portion of time considering how they would entertain family and friends who come to visit. Visions of the family barbeque, drinks under the alfresco and watching the kids play outside is often one of the first thoughts that comes to mind. Having the perfect blend of indoor/outdoor flow and a space large enough to accommodate guests can have a direct bearing on the “liveability” of a home, thus influencing the overall price achieved.
Whilst many potential purchasers do not actively recognise it, the amount of natural light a home has will have a direct impact on how a property feels. This means that it is important that an alfresco space does not restrict the amount of natural light that is allowed into the living space. Clever planning can overcome this obstacle, such as a pitched roof or electric awning which allows the patio roof to open and close as desired. This can allow more natural light as well as add a point of difference when the time comes to sell.
Point of difference
The harsh Australian climate means that most households enjoy outdoor entertaining in summer and avoid it as much as possible in the winter. An alfresco space that can be enclosed allows the space to be used year-round and again adds a point of difference. The design and finish of an alfresco space can in many cases add more value to a home than the amount of yard space and landscaping around it, as it is usually the place where people congregate and spend the most time when entertaining. This is always noticed directly or indirectly by potential purchasers and can shape the overall outcome when marketing your home.
Are you trying to design a winter-friendly alfresco?
Here are four things to consider.
1. North is your friend
Placing your alfresco on the northern side of your home means you can capture the winter sun.
Well, the sun passes across the sky from east to west on a low trajectory from the north. This means a north facing alfresco will have sun the whole day, which also has positive implications on heating and lighting – you shouldn’t need to use as much of either, which helps reduce costs.
And the best reason – you tend to use your alfresco more when you get the sun on and in it.
2. Put a roof on it!
Having a roof on your alfresco area immediately creates the feeling of an indoor room outdoors.
There are a lot of things to consider when deciding what type of roofing to have for your alfresco area.
Historically your alfresco roof would be an extension of your home’s roof, there are modern alternatives with technology to help you manage weather (think staying warm in winter), light, ventilation and other factors. These options offer flexibility of your alfresco use, plus they can be designed to feel like part of your home – even if the roof style is different.
Your alfresco roof could be:
a fixed roof – gable, flat, or pyramid… or even any combination of these
a louvre roof
a sensor-driven opening roof
a glass opening roof
At the end of the day, choose the roof that will work for how you use your alfresco area.
3. All wrapped up
While many people prefer their alfresco area to be as open so they can embrace the beautiful weather of our region, having an open alfresco can limit your use.
Enclosing your alfresco is a practical option that gives you the flexibility to have protection from the winter cold, enjoy the beautiful autumn days we have here in Albury Wodonga, or keep cool in the hot summer.
These days there is a wide range of choices when it comes to enclosing your alfresco, so you can create a space that you love, that you use all the time, and that blends with your existing home. Your options can include:
glass or screen walls
smart insulated panels
wide sliding, stacker or bi-fold doors
And if none of the above work for you, you can always custom design your space for the ultimate in your alfresco living.
4. It’s getting hot, hot, hot!
Because we have such long (and usually hot) summers, a lot of focus goes on how to cool your alfresco, and sometimes heating is overlooked.
Including your heating options, when designing and building your alfresco means your heating will look and feel like part of your home – and not tacked on as an afterthought.
When designing heating to be included in your alfresco area, it is important to understand the Council regulations that apply before you start building, as some restrictions may apply. Shameless self-plug – this is something we do for you at Ultimate Alfresco.
Think about what type of heating you want, for example:
a built-in fire, creating both warmth and ambience (these days you have a great range of gas, electric and wood options)
a wood pit – either in the ground or free standing
electric heating, providing warmth from overhead
a pizza oven – dual purpose – it provides warmth and food
transportable heating options (check out some different heating choices here)
Your heating can be a gorgeous design element that reflects your home, or simply creates a vivid statement in its shape and size.
If you are considering adding an alfresco to your home so you can enjoy being outdoors all year round, feel free to contact us for further advice.