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6 tips for a winning gazebo design

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May 13, 2011

A gazebo in the backyard can add beauty to your home, provide extra space for entertaining, and can be used for things you might not have considered, such as a potting garage or an outdoor office.

No matter how you use your gazebo, there are a few points of design you should always consider.

Gazebo design: making the most of outdoor spaces

Before you put pen to paper or call the contractor, consider these details for the gazebo you want:

  1. Find the perfect place. Gazebos should be on level ground, preferably on a small rise, and should not be in a place where water pools during rains. Keep the same rules in mind for the pathway that leads to the gazebo, as well.
  2. Get the permits. Some local areas require permits to place any substantial structure in your backyard, even if that structure is not permanent. Check into building permits and requirements before you go further with your gazebo design.
  3. Explore the options. What items do you want in your gazebo? Benches all around the inside? Space for a table for outdoor dinners? Lattice on a few sides to facilitate climbing ivy and afford a measure of privacy? Decide which options matter most to you.
  4. Build it or hire someone? If you are handy with the basics of construction, you might be able to build your own gazebo. Other options include kits that come with step-by-step instructions, or hiring a contractor to handle the building for you. Hiring someone to do the work can give you the most customized job.
  5. Electricity and water? If you are going to enjoy your gazebo as an outdoor office, a place for family dinners, or a home base for backyard entertaining, consider running electricity and water to the structure. This allows you to install lights, electrical outlets, and even a sink for ease in gardening and entertaining guests.
  6. Build bigger than you need. Construction design experts have found that while many gazebos might be too small, a gazebo is rarely too big. Create your initial designs based on what you know you need, and then consider adding more space to accommodate the little extras you might want to add to your gazebo at a later date.

Gazebos can add the perfect ambiance to a so-so backyard. Plan your gazebo design carefully to ensure that your new investment fits your needs for many years to come.

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