Making the most of your holiday home’s outside space

Making the most of your holiday home’s outside space has never been more important. With the warm weather here at last, we might all get a chance to relax in the sun. According to one survey the following list represents the top priorities of British holiday makers booking holidays in the British Isles.

  1. Garden
  2. WiFi
  3. Off-road parking
  4. Dishwasher
  5. High chair
  6. Cot
  7. Open fire
  8. Near a pub
  9. Near a shop

Comfortably at number one on this list is the garden. The outside space of your holiday home is possibly its most enticing aspect for you and for your guests. Whether it is a bijou balcony, a modest area of decking or a sprawling landscaped garden, it can make a holiday if there is a private space available to relax and enjoy just through the door. A simple, neat garden with a table and some chairs can be enough to make a positive difference to the holiday experience.

Here are a few more ideas to make it even better for you and for your guests.

Create a private outside space for your holiday home

An outdoor space is great but not with the neighbours looking over from next door or if you are visible to people passing. Fences, trellises and tree planting are all ways to create a more private space. Privet, laurel and box all make good hedgerows and grow relatively quickly, but not so fast you will be constantly cutting them back. One or two trims a year should keep them neat and in control.

Think low maintenance

Decking, paving and artificial grass, with some well-chosen shrubs in pots are some of the alternatives to make your garden attractive but require the minimum amount of care. With this in mind, choose plants that are hardy, non-toxic (in case of children and pets) and with a pleasant aroma if possible. English lavender is ideal for this.

Bring the inside outside

A pergola, a converted shed, a large umbrella or an awning are all excellent ideas among the many options out there to give your outdoor space a bit of cover from the elements. A covering close to the door can also provide a pleasant transition from an indoor environment. Banking on inconsistent weather seems a safe bet in these isles. Some form of garden shelter is ideal to see through those inclement passages without being driven back indoors and ending the party. In addition, as summer heat can become very intense, some welcome shade will mean that you don’t have to bake in the sun.

Make the furniture comfortable and sociable. Think about investing in waterproof sofas and bean bags and maybe a hammock or two if space allows it. Although not cheap to run, outdoor heaters can really make a space fit to stay in all day and even all night.

Design like you would indoors. Paying some attention to the style of furnishings and fittings in your outside space can go a long way to making your holiday home really stand out as exceptional. Even relatively inexpensive plastic garden furniture can look good if you have chosen the right colour and style.

Don’t forget the lights

Outside lighting comes in a wide variety. They may be lights fully wired to the mains and even switched on with timers or sensors that detect dusk falling. Alternatively, simple battery-operated LED lights can be suspended from trees or trellises and fences or used as table lamps for that intimate evening. The atmosphere that simple lighting can evoke makes your outside space so much more inviting as the night draws in.

Dining outside at your holiday home

Some culinary enthusiasts will go as far as to invest in an outdoor kitchen. Others will stick to a barbecue set on wheels that can be stored away after use, and more will serve from the kitchen inside. The more comfortable the setting outside, the more you and your guests will want to use it for eating at all times of day.

Think about what kind of eating experience you or your guests want to have outside. If you are letting to families or have one yourself and enjoy family meals together, a long table and chair set could be the thing. Or you may be more interested in snacks and frisbee in the afternoons on the lawn. In that case, a drinks cooler and a brick-built barbecue might be more appropriate.

Make your holiday home’s outside space dog-friendly

Taking a few steps to make your outside space somewhere the dog can be off the lead and not escape, have access to clean water and some toys can let everyone relax. The number of potential guests leaps up if your holiday home is genuinely dog-friendly. 

Invest in a hot tub

It is an investment which is proven to increase the fun and increase the bookings. As long as you are prepared to do the maintenance and can afford the outlay and running costs, a hot-tub is a valuable addition to your holiday home’s outside space. However, do be aware of the risks and the importance of preventing Legionnaire’s disease in your holiday home and hot tub. 

Think about parking

Off-road parking is often cited by holiday makers as a crucial requirement of their accommodation. If you haven’t already and space allows, consider creating dedicated private parking spaces for guests only. Try and leave enough space for your own and maintenance workers’ vehicles.

Hopefully there will be plenty of sunshine to enjoy this summer, and these tips will help you make the most of your holiday home’s outside space.

This is a marketing article from My Holiday Home Insurance, a specialist provider of insurance for holiday homes, leisure homes, holiday lodges and static caravans. Our team of experienced advisers are always happy to help, so for more information call our Northampton office on freephone 0800 988 0890.

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