Building the Great Outdoors Room – Use of outside living areas growing in priority, complexity

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“As Americans try to maximize the space of their existing homes, they’re increasingly looking outside to create new, rejuvenating places. “More people are realizing that home begins when you set foot on your property, not just when you enter your front door,” says garden designer Julie Moir Messervy, author of Home Outside: Creating the Landscape You Love (Taunton Press). “You can think of your outside as an extension of the inside.” An outdoor living/grilling area ranked as the third-highest priority space, after a separate laundry room and additional closets/storage, in a recent survey of 4,000 readers by Better Homes and Gardens magazine.

Clients see the outdoors as another room of their home, says Josh Baker of BOWA, a high-end remodeling firm in the Washington, D.C., area. He says he does “a lot of pools and other outdoor areas” to create a resort feel.”

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