Nicola Kelland - Outdoor room

Publish Date
Friday, 18 December 2015, 5:02PM
By Nicola Kelland

I think adding an outdoor room or adding an awning to a home can really enhance a property and add some value. I recently added a large awning to my own home and I love they way it gives the house some “eyebrows”, adding dimension to the flat façade. I have also been pleasantly surprised, at how often we use it in winter. New Zealand homes have not utilised awnings as often as our friends across the Tasman. Possibly due to the fact that their climate is often hotter in the summer and they need more shade. But Australians also love to eat and drink outdoors in winter as well as summer, and it is standard to have awnings, pergola’s or fully weather proof outdoor rooms, to extend their restaurants and homes. They add space and ambience and lengthen the opportunity to relax outside.

With summer just around the corner now, it could be a great time to add an awning, or a shade sail which are relatively inexpensive. You could even create a complete outdoor room, it will not only improve the aesthetic look of a home, but increase the area of liveable space. The subtle light, that my awning gives my west facing lounge and dining room, ensures that it stays not only cool, but reduces the glare of the late afternoon sun. My furnishing are benefitting from less light and we can now use our courtyard more often, without being baked in the hot sun, or scramble indoors if we get a rain shower.

With the doors open and the awning out, the house looks and feels bigger and when people arrive, I have noticed that they are instantly drawn to the outdoor courtyard. Buying a home is an emotive experience, people imagine how they would live in the house, while they are viewing. Creating interesting living spaces, outside and inside, provides the picture for the mind to imagine living there.

With New Zealand’s intense sun and the risk of skin cancer the need to provide shaded outdoor spaces has become essential. When selling homes with awnings, shade sails or outdoor rooms, often the first questions that a buyer will ask me, “is the awning included?” The more benefits you can provide to home buyers, with the design of your home, the more appealing it becomes. The more appealing a home is, the more likely you are to achieve a great price when selling.

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