Creating a Luxurious Outdoor Living Space

For most of us here in Canada, winters can be long and harsh and those precious summer months beg us to spend as much time outside as possible. It’s not surprising that outdoor living spaces continue to be an important part of our homes. Creating an outdoor space that you love to spend time in and can enjoy for as long as possible allows us to maximize our summer enjoyment and increase the equity in our homes. Here are a few tips to help you create the perfect outdoor living space!

Photo Source: HomeSense

Start With a Plan! Every outdoor living space, from a small balcony to a large backyard, can offer a place to sit back and relax. Ask yourself what activities you’d like to incorporate into your space and then create a plan that incorporates those functions. One big mistake homeowners make is adding a single detail – like a pool or a deck – to their yard without thinking about how it will work with future landscaping plans. Even if your budget does not allow you to overhaul your entire yard this year, start by creating a plan for what you’d like to final layout to be. You can always finish your space in stages but having a plan will ensure that you don’t have to make expensive changes later on because something doesn’t fit.

Consider Care & Maintenance! A beautiful outdoor living space that eats up all your free time to maintain over the summer defeats the purpose of having the space in the first place. There are plenty of options today for low-maintenance products, plants and materials that can be used to create a space that you can actual have time to just enjoy. Consult with a professional landscaper and fence/deck builder as you go to ensure you understand the maintenance requirements as you go. Some common outdoor living choices like hot tubs and pools come with maintenance requirements so ensure you understand the time and cost that will be involved in maintaining these features before you decide to add them into your plan.

Plan to Entertain! If you like to entertain, this will be a big consideration when planning your outdoor space. You will want to include places to sit and visit, places to prepare and serve outdoor dinners and the like. This may be as simple as a deck with a BBQ, dining set and conversation area or you may want to incorporate a full outdoor kitchen with all the conveniences of the indoors right at your finger tips.

Extend Your Season! The biggest reason our outdoor season is cut short is weather and while we can’t control the weather, we can prepare for it to ensure we can enjoy our outdoor time for longer. Things like well planned landscape lighting, a fireplace, outdoor heaters, gazebos, sunrooms and even movable walls can be incorporated into your plan, allowing you to enjoy the space on cooler evenings, on rainy days and longer into the fall season.

Plan for Future Growth! How long will you be using this space? How do you envision your lifestyle changing over those years? If you’re planning to move in the near future, you will want to focus on features that will add value to your home while avoiding high maintenance features that may make your home harder to sell later on. If you’re planning to have children or have small children who are going to become teenagers, considering their future needs and your future needs will ensure the yard is something you can still enjoy even down the road. A pool is a prime example: while an open pool may seem like a great idea now, it may be a nightmare down the road when you have little ones. Keeping this in mind, perhaps a plan that incorporates safety measures now can save you the headache of expensive changes in the future.

Get Started! Summers are never long enough so don’t lose those precious days to procrastination. If financing the updates you wish to make is the next step, consider a home equity loan which will allow you to access the funds you need to complete your updates and allow you to begin enjoying your new outdoor living space now! Talk to a Tribecca home equity specialist to find out what options are available to you today!

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Home Trends Magazine


Essentials for Outdoor Living

Our contributors share some of their favorite finds for outdoor living spaces.

Lights, Pottery Barn; Pots, CB2

I love a planter garden. This gives an opportunity to play with new ideas every season. Last year, I planted each pot with a different herb for a modern look. Of course, no garden is complete without string lights to set the mood for that backyard bash or intimate outdoor dinner. – Shirley Meisels

Light, Lumens; Pouf, CB2

Lighting can turn an ordinary outdoor space into something magical. In a garden or around a pool, this Pearl LED Lamp looks amazing when displayed in multiple sizes. I also love indoor/outdoor pouffes. They make great little side tables when you put a tray on top, or can be used as an extra seat if needed. – Christine Elliot

Keep your drinkware and cocktail supplies in one place with a bar cart that has a cooler/ice storage. Outdoor fabrics have also come a long way! Add color and interest to your outdoor space with pillows and cushions in interesting fabrics and textures. – Robbin Caskenette

Photo, Toja Grid

Protection from the elements is key! Enjoy the outdoors longer with covered lounging, dining and cooking areas. – Trish Knight

Stylish melamine plates that won’t break if a party gets too wild is a must. We also recommend stemless glasses that won’t tip on outdoor furniture which tends to be a bit less stable when placed on uneven ground pavers and grass. – Amanda Hamilton

I love to add a personal touch to my outdoor living space with decorative DIY projects that add a hint of whimsy. You can find some of my favorite DIY accents on the Marc & Mandy Show or online at! – Marc Atiyolil

Treat your outdoor living space like a living room and don’t forget to add an area rug. I also love the look of palms and plants in an outdoor space to create an oasis. Put them in fun planters for a creative touch. – Karla Dreyer

A great feature in an outdoor living space is a concrete fire table. Available in gas or propane, these upscale campfires help you stay warm on cool summer nights and are ideal for after dinner lounging. When not ignited and combined with the cover, this table also functions as a coffee table. I also love a stylish insulated rolling cooler which allows guests to enjoy ice cold beverages outdoors! – Jillian Straky

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Home Trends Magazine


Outdoor adventures to enjoy across America

We don’t want to toot our own horn, but America is one of the best places in the world when it comes to outdoor adventures. There are so many different environments, from beaches to mountain tops, lakes to volcanos, and everything in between and with each place comes something new to see and do. Whether you are a seasoned outdoor explorer or someone who is usually a couch potato but wants to try something new, there is something for everyone! Here are what we think are the best outdoor adventures to enjoy across America.

Hot air balloon in Albuquerque

Seeing the world from the sky is pretty incredible whatever way you do it, but the most relaxing (And arguably romantic!) is via a hot air balloon. The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta in October is a fantastic time to go as you will be surrounded by the unusual sight of hundreds of other balloons, but even if you head up on a different day, you’ll find a tranquil yet exciting experience unlike any other.


Go diving in the Florida Keys

From one extream to the other, head under the sea to explore some amazingly unique attractions, such as abandoned shipwrecks and stunning coral reefs. The best time to do a diving expedition is between April and July as you will miss the hurricane season peak and the water will be warm. Head out with a guide to make the most of the experience.

Hike around the Pacific Northwest’s National Parks

Every National Park is worth a visit, especially if you are a fan of the great outdoors, however, some of the best and superlative are based in the Pacific Northwest so if you want to hit a few in one trip, then this is the area to head to! Crater Lake National Park in Oregon boasts the deepest lake in the US, whereas North Cascades National Park is home to stunning untouched wilderness.

Camp along the Pacific Coast Highway

The PCH is a fantastic road trip where the terrain seems to change constantly, and there’s always something to see or do. The best way to really enjoy this wonder is to camp along the way, stopping off to explore places such as Malibu, Santa Barbara, San Francisco, and LA. Beach campsites are cheap, but the memories will be priceless!


Hit the slopes in Colorado

If you want to spend some time cruising down some varied terrain, on a snowboard or skis, there is nowhere better in the US than Colorado. With stunning views, a range of slopes ideal from beginners to experts and resorts to suit all budgets, Colorado is the place to be if you’re looking for some snow adventure.

If this post doesn’t get your itching to go on an adventure, then there is something wrong with you! You don’t have to be super sporty to try some of these adventures; all you need is an adventurous spirit and some enthusiasm. So, what are you waiting for?!

The post Outdoor adventures to enjoy across America appeared first on Worldation.



10 Outdoor Spots in Need of Spring Cleaning

Spring has (almost) sprung, which means that warmer days, blooming flowers, and singing birds are just around the corner. It also means that the ravages left behind by winter are on full display, and that mud, leaves, and other debris have turned the exterior of your home into an unsightly mess. So, as you get started on spring cleaning, don’t forget to tend to the outside of your house too. Here are 10 outdoor spots that could use some special attention now that the worst of winter is behind us.
Bob Vila : Trusted Home Renovation & Repair Expert


7 of the best outdoor security cameras on Amazon


Home security cameras used to be only for the rich and/or famous, but thanks to the democratization of technology and consumer demand, keeping your home safe by spying on it has become affordable for more and more people without Emmys, Grammys, Oscars, or yachts to speak of. 

But with so many options on the market, how do you decide which home security camera is right for you? You read this guide, that’s how. We’ve dug through Amazon reviews and compared features to help you decide on a home security camera system that will help you keep your home and stuff safe. Read more…

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Image: Swann

The Good

4K recording • Night vision, motion detection, thermal detection • Eight cameras with a 2TB HDD

The Bad

Very involved setup

The Bottom Line

If you want top-of-the-line security for your home, the Swann 16 system is definitely near the top.

1. Swann 16 Channel Security System

When it comes to security, it pays to be prepared, and the Swann 16 system is one of the best.

  • Number of cameras:
  • Wired/Wireless:
  • Night vision:
  • Motion sensor:
Imagine an old-school system with new-school tech under the hood, and you have the Swann 16 Channel Security System.
The system comes with eight cameras that you can set up all around the outside of your house, with each covering 150 to 200 ft., depending on available light. With eight cameras covering that much area individually, you should be able to catch anyone cutting across your yard. All recordings will come in crystal clear, too, with the cameras recording in 4K. And with motion detection, night vision, and even thermal pickups, nothing will escape its sight.
The setup also includes a 2TB hard drive for storage.

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