Your home’s hardscape plays a significant role. It adds a great deal of beauty to your entire landscape, and helps to marry your landscaping features to your architectural features, creating a sense of uniformity and coherency.
Next, it adds to the overall value of your property. Finally, a hardscape sets the tone for your outdoor living style and needs.
So how can you design an incredible hardscape that will improve your overall property? Here are 10 tips for creating the hardscape design of your dreams.
1. Evaluate Your Space
The first step in hardscape design is evaluating the space that you actually have to work with. You may think that you can just plop a patio down anywhere you please, but if there are underground utilities, difficult soil or slopes standing in your way, you could be facing a lot of challenges.
It’s a good idea to have a professional take a look at your property in order to help you find the best space for updating your hardscape and to assist you with the process of maximizing that space.
2. Consider the Function
Design is about more than just esthetics. Yes, you want your hardscape to be breathtaking and beautiful, but you also want it to be practical and functional.
Although it’s easy to fall in love with a specific hardscaping material and be tempted to employ it you have to consider whether it’s the best material to work with.
Choosing a type of paver or slab that can’t handle exposure to chemicals, for example, will mean a lot of expensive headaches for those who have installed these products around a swimming pool. Know how you intend to use your materials and make sure that they not only match your style, but that they also will meet your day-to-day needs.
3. Evaluate Existing Themes/Styles
What types of landscaping and architectural features already exist throughout your property? Considering what you already have and making an effort to add onto that with your hardscaping upgrades will help you to get the most out of your budget and will also ensure that your property remains cohesive and beautiful.
4. Be True to Your Budget
Only you know what you can and cannot afford. When it comes to making the decisions during your hardscaping process, your budget should always be in mind.
When deciding whether to work with natural stone or manufactured materials, or whether you should install the materials on your own or hire a professional, it’s important to have a thorough understanding of your budgetary needs and stick to them.
5. Visit a Showroom
Looking at various hardscaping materials online is one thing, but having the ability to check them out in person is completely different. Make a plan to visit a local showroom that features an array of natural and manufactured hardscaping materials so that you can see them with your own eyes.
6. Use Online Hardscape Design Tools
You don’t just have to cross your fingers and hope that your hardscaping materials end up looking okay within the scope of your landscape. Numerous online hardscape design software tools exist that allow you to get a comprehensive, multi-dimensional look at what your finished project will look like.
7. Consider the Future
What’s in style this year may be completely out-of-date next year. Make sure that you consider the future when working on your hardscape design plans today.
There’s nothing wrong with having a modern sense of style or wanting to incorporate specific trends into your outdoor living space, but you need to be prepared to live with your decisions for a long time. Hardscapes are built to last, and when the proper materials are utilized and are correctly cared for, they can remain beautiful and functional for generations.
The best thing to do is to settle on timeless materials that can be versatile in their styling. From here, you can use outdoor furnishings and vegetation to create whatever type of theme you wish to establish. The latter are much easier to change and update as hardscaping and landscaping styles evolve.
In many cases, hardscape designs starts out relatively simple. Perhaps you are only planning on constructing a simple patio, or a single garden path.
From here, though, you may start to dream of more. Wouldn’t an outdoor kitchen be smart? And wouldn’t you love to have a kitchen with all of the features, including new appliances, granite countertops, a stone pizza oven and an outdoor fireplace?
You may have the funds to take care of everything in one fell swoop. In many instances, though, all of your dream hardscaping plans may be out of you current price range.
That’s okay. Sitting down and prioritizing your plans will help you settle on the best place to start, and to create a roadmap for your future plans so that you can achieve your goals.
9. Think About Maintenance
It’s easy to get extremely swept up in your daydreams about your sprawling and elegant new hardscape design and forget to keep your feet firmly planted on the ground. An elaborate hardscape design with all sorts of nooks and crannies might sound exciting and unique on paper, but you also need to make sure that your design plans are practical and sustainable.
For the most part, hardscaping materials are generally quite simple to maintain and care for, but you do need to take the time to be absolutely certain that you’re selecting materials that you can handle the upkeep for, and that mesh with your lifestyle. If you’ve got kids who frequently spill their food and drinks, for instance, you’ll want to avoid porous materials that are more challenging for stain removal.
If you are installing a walkway or driveway in NJ, you need to make sure that you choose materials that are compatible with ice melting products and extremely cold weather. Planning ahead will make your life a lot easier in the long run.
10. Get a Professional Opinion
Many homeowners end up making the decision to either hire a hardscape design professional, or to run their own hardscape design plans by an expert before moving forward with the construction process.
Professional input can help you to maximize your space, keep you focused and on track with your primary goals and ensure that you end up with an outdoor living space that you’ll be in love with – both now and in the many years ahead.
Hardscape Design Made Simple in NJ
The experts at Braen Supply are happy to help you create your perfect hardscape design for your home. As the leading landscaping and hardscaping supplier in NJ, we offer a massive inventory of 100% natural and high quality manufactured hardscaping materials to suit your every need.
We can connect you with industry experts who can assist you with the design process, or we can point you in the direction of excellent hardscape design software tools that are available online. Once you’re ready to get your plans underway, we’ll set you up with the very best materials at the lowest and most competitive prices.