Is an Outdoor Kitchen a Smart Investment?



You have probably dreamt of owning a house with a big backyard for the kids to run around in. You are not alone. Even in parts of the country with a colder climate, everybody wants a nice outdoor space that they can customize to their liking and entertain company in. In the last few years, however, our approach to big backyards has shifted a bit. 

Backyard living spaces are what combine the function of the living room with the outdoor exposure to the elements of a gazebo. They have been on the rise throughout America for years. 

It’s a Trend

Today, there are plenty of people who even keep TVs and fireplaces outside. In fact, according to the American Institute of Architects, requests for outdoor living in 2017 had been on the rise for six consecutive years. The trend is definitely gaining in popularity across the Midwest, the South, and the Pacific coast. Patios sporting brand new custom fire pits can be seen from California to Virginia.

It is a new fashion and that means outdoor kitchens have not quite stood the test of time. However, it is equally possible that in-door out-door living will become the new default style of construction in the near future. 

Homeowners tend to get excited about outdoor living spaces, but they don’t necessarily represent a good cost-benefit trade. Other factors are much more relevant and often wind up muddying the overall result of the renovation investment. For example: 

What are people in similar houses in your neighborhood doing?

  • If you get a swimming pool, your property’s value will only rise if every house around yours also has a swimming pool. The same goes for outdoor kitchens. If your house is the only one with a particular feature, it will not go up in value much. 

What is the weather like where your property is?

  • Having an outdoor kitchen in San Diego might be fine and dandy, but in a northern state it would not make sense! A nice outdoor space in a northern state won’t help you much simply because nobody is looking for an outdoor space. 

What is the socio economic level surrounding your house? 

  • The majority of the housing market is made of people who are looking for starter homes. Period. This means your property’s value will remain the same even with an outdoor expansion.

Effective (and easy) Renovation Alternatives

Outdoor renovations do tend toward being cheaper than upscale indoor renovations

With the advent of search engines, it has never been easier to access information. This includes DIY information for home improvement projects. The following are alternatives to outdoor living spaces that are represent a greater bang for your buck. 

Themed Dining Room

You could really go crazy with this one. For a classical ballroom style, think Beauty and the Beast. For a cozy rustic look, think French chateaux. It doesn’t have to be over the top. You could just stick to a single pattern or collection. 

Use Mirrors to Make Your House Look Bigger

Square footage is fixed, yes, but perceived square footage is going to count when push comes to shove. You can take advantage of this in key areas like the bathroom and living areas to double the “size” of the room. If you use monochromatic color palettes, this effect is even stronger.

Clean Your Bathroom Before Visits From Buyers!

This can mean the difference between a sale and a dud. It is very simple and very cheap, but many people do not take this move into account. 

Change the Front Door

They say first impressions count more. If you control the first impressions of your guests and real estate agents by buying a beautiful door, this will add immense value to your property. There is also the negative aspect to consider. If your front door is creaky, dingy, or damaged, it can affect your bottom line. Not only that, but it can also lead to unnecessary energy expenditures. 

Add A Headboard

The mattress and bedspring don’t matter a fig. In the world of renovation and design, a headboard is a must for a well put-together bedroom. This is one of those life hacks you can “build” yourself by painting one onto the wall. 

To Sum It All Up

Outdoor kitchens are not the best renovation you can invest in. They are a trend and might be worth it depending on your specific desires. If you live in a neighborhood with more than one or two outdoor kitchens, it could be a worthy gamble for the sake of flying to the top of the local price range.