Guest Post by Rob Wachter

Summer is the time to enjoy early morning sunrises with a hot (or iced) cup of coffee, relaxing barbeques with family and friends, and, of course, late night S’mores around the fire pit with the kids.

Who doesn’t love taking the party outside?

It’s no surprise outdoor living areas are trendier than bell-bottom pants in the ‘70s. People enjoy being outside and want to maximize every possible creature comfort a home might offer. As a result, outdoor kitchens, fireplaces and comfortable design schemes have become the norm for architects and designers.

Even if your outdoor space doesn’t feel very inviting, or you don’t have thousands to invest, don’t let that stop you. Here are three easy and inexpensive ways to get started turning your outdoor space into an inviting destination.

Comfortable Seating

2 3 Ways to Transform Your Outdoor Space

(Image Flickr AForestFrolic)

You’d be surprised how comfortable seating will draw people outside. Try installing a hanging swing bench and picking up some Adirondack furniture (or build it yourself). You might consider painting the furniture with bright colors to splash up the area.

Mood Lighting

4 3 Ways to Transform Your Outdoor Space

(Image Flickr Avant)

There’s no substitute for the moon and stars, but don’t underestimate the importance of adding your own mood lighting when it comes to creating an inviting atmosphere. Candle lanterns hung from the ceiling or placed on tables or railings is all you need. They are inexpensive, easy to move, and have no wires. You can also use solar powered party torches for lighting.

Fire Pit

3 3 Ways to Transform Your Outdoor Space

As the evening winds down and it starts getting dark, people love staying outside if there’s a fire. If you don’t have an outdoor fireplace, a simple fire pit is a great alternative. Use paver patio blocks to build their own fire pit. If that’s not your style, just pick up a portable one and call it good.

Guest Blogger Rob Wachter is the Inbound Marketing Manager for Coldwell Banker Bain. You can read more posts by Rob on Fences and Flowers.

 Cover image via Flickr ARLORD