Topic: Patios and Decks

Date Posted: Wednesday, November 11, 2015
Posted by: Tanya Zanfa (Master Admin)

At Home: Don’t hide inside as the weather cools

At Home: Don’t hide inside as the weather cools

Colleen Johnson-Bryant, For the Daily News Journal

On this All Hallows’ Eve, as fall weather gently approaches, I’ve got a list of ways to keep your patios, decks and porches active as the days cool.

The evenings of children dressed in colorful costumes running door-to-door throughout the neighborhoods seem to be fading. If we spent Halloween night outside our homes, tending to a fire or grilling a meal, perhaps we might encourage such traditions to stay alive.

Bill Wilson, a local dad and sales consultant with the John Jones Real Estate Team, compiled the following ways to revive patio life in the fall and spruce up your home in the process, complete with supporting reference articles to boot:

Build a fire pit

Fire pits can add “the perfect ambiance for roasting marshmallows and telling ghost stories,” says Wilson. “Don’t forget to leave enough space for friends and family to pull up a deck chair, as fire pits tend to draw a crowd.”

Wilson cites an article on titled “How to Build a Fire Pit” that provides step-by-step instructions on how to build your own. The level of difficulty is rated “hard,” however you can also purchase ready-made options at home stores.

Please always abide by fire safety guidelines, found at or under “fire prevention” at

Add an outdoor heater

“When temperatures start to dip, an outdoor heater can keep a patio area cozy and comfortable,” says Wilson. “There are many options to choose from, including propane, electric, tabletop and stand-alone models.”

Block the cooler air

“A screened-in porch can get too cold for comfort without protection from chilly fall drafts,” says Wilson. “Adding curtains or shutters can help block the breeze and keep warm air in, turning this favorite summertime space into a fall retreat.”

Install a hot tub

“Turn your backyard or patio into a year-round refuge for family and friends by adding a hot tub,” says Wilson. “Don’t forget an insulation cover to keep the heat in and leaves and debris out.”

Upgrade features

“If you’re willing to make an investment, you can update a patio with heated flooring, also known as radiant heating, or have an outdoor fireplace installed,” says Wilson. “Both extend the usability of outdoor spaces into the colder months.”

Two additional articles Wilson cites as inspiration include “7 Ways to Extend Your Patio Season Into Fall” from and “Fall’s Best Outdoor Spaces” from

Contact Colleen Johnson-Bryant at


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