NEW HOUSING TRENDS 2015: The Great Outdoors

By Chuck Tripp

Whether you’re young, old, or somewhere in between, most people love the outdoors. Especially in mild, temperate climates that afford numerous opportunities for getting outside for a little R-and-R. One trend we have noticed at Donald A. Gardner Architects in recent years is that homeowners value living spaces that extend beyond the walls of their house proper. Depending on your interests and imagination, there are seemingly unlimited possibilities to bring the outdside in…or rather, to expand your living experience beyond walls, doors, and windows to the great outdoors.

NEW HOUSING TRENDS 2015: The Great Outdoors. View from the Jasper Hill Plan #5020

Get outside and have some fun

These days people are looking to extend the boundaries and living spaces of their homes. Converting outdoor spaces into gathering spaces is a great way to do just that. “People tend to view their homes as outdoor/indoor living experiences,” says Chuck Tripp, Sales and Marketing Director at Donald A. Gardner Architects. “And depending on where you live that can be year-round. The outside has truly become a gathering place for friends and families, or for individuals who simply want to enjoy a good book, a sunset, or a little quiet time.”

Outdoor Kitchens

The days of the old charcoal barbie are long gone. Today, homeowners not only have elaborate grills but full-scale kitchens with ovens, refrigerators, and all the necessary accoutrements to prepare an elegant dinner for two, or twenty. Of course, you will want to carefully check various appliances and tableware to make sure your kitchen will survive multiple seasons in your climate.

NEW HOUSING TRENDS 2015: The Great Outdoors. Outdoor kitchen of the Jasper Hill Plan #5020

The Jasper Hill Plan #5020



Derived from the Portuguese originally, the modern veranda has become as all-American—and as pervasive–as hot dogs and apple pie. Though verandas may come in many shapes and sizes, they are generally covered and offer a rail or outdoor seating component to give the feel of an outside room.

NEW HOUSING TRENDS 2015: The Great Outdoors. Veranda of the Jasper Hill Plan #5020

The Jasper Hill Plan #5020


Fire Features

Fires bring warmth—both literal and emotional. They are a wonderful way to manufacture a cozy feel for your family and your guests. Whether it’s roasting marshmallows on a cool winter evening, or gathering around a fire on brisk spring afternoon, a built-in fireplace or free-standing fire pit can add both charm and functionality.

Great Outdoors: Rear Porch with Fireplace from The Runnymeade Design #1164

The Runnymeade Design #1164


Lounge Areas

Your family and your guests should not be confined to the den, kitchen, or living room. Areas just outside the door can provide a wonderful alternative to socializing indoors—and add variety to your home entertainment offering. Many families are installing outdoor screens and sound systems to watch ball games, or to listen to music over cocktails.

Great Outdoors. Screened Porch with lounge area of The Sagecrest Plan #1226

The Sagecrest Plan #1226


To learn more about the possibilities of extending your outdoor living experience, please contact one of our DAG Representatives at 800-388-7580 or [email protected]!

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