The Top Reasons to Add an Outdoor Kitchen to Your Home

An outdoor kitchen is an excellent addition to your home, providing a space to entertain guests and cook meals outdoors. This space offers convenience for you and your family, but it can also be a lucrative addition to your home. According to Absolute Outdoor Kitchens, homes with outdoor kitchens can potentially see an ROI between 100% and 200%.

Here are the top five reasons to add an outdoor kitchen to your home:

Increase the value of your home.
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An outdoor kitchen can add significant value to your home, making it more attractive to potential buyers. According to Zillow, homes with outdoor kitchens sell for nearly 30% more than expected - this is because the addition of an outdoor kitchen makes a house appear larger and more inviting.
 
The cost of installing an outdoor kitchen is not as high as you might think. To figure out the cost, you'll need to check different components and get price estimates in your region. Then decide how to build the outside kitchen you want within the price range you've set.
 
Expand your living space.
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An outdoor kitchen can give you additional space to entertain guests or enjoy the outdoors. Whether you're cooking, grilling, or baking, an outdoor kitchen can help you improve your lifestyle.
 
It's a lot easier to host parties outdoors than indoors. If you've added a kitchen island and an outdoor bar to your outdoor patio space, setting out snacks and drinks while your friends mingle on the deck or the lawn is perfect.

Enjoy the outdoors.
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Outdoor cooking allows everyone to enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. It has numerous benefits, not only for your body but also for your mind.

One of the best benefits of having an outdoor kitchen is that it will help you improve your health, as well as the health of your family.

Save money
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An outdoor kitchen can save you money on your energy bills by providing an alternative to cooking at home.
Use an indoor kitchen during the summer. It will increase your electric bill because the extra heating inside requires the air conditioners to work harder to cool the house down.

Keep your home clean and the smell outside.
 
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It may be common to feel a little twinge when you think about other families tramping around your indoor space when hosting large groups. An outdoor kitchen lets you keep the mess contained outside to one area. Also, If you cook particularly smelly foods such as fish or fried items, those smells can linger for days. If you prepare the same menu outside, your house will smell fresh.
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Illuminate Your Outdoor Space with These Landscape Lighting Ideas

The proper lighting can transform your home and make it feel more inviting. Here are 5 landscape lighting ideas to help you create the perfect ambiance for your outdoor spaces.

Front Yard Lighting

The front yard is a significant part of your home. It's the first thing people see when they come to visit you, and it can make or break their impression of you as well. If you want to get the best out of this space, then here are some landscaping lighting ideas that you should consider:
 
  1. Pathway Lights
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A pathway light is a great way to illuminate an area without too much energy. They are also helpful in creating a welcoming atmosphere. You can use them to highlight a walkway or path leading from one room to another. This type of lighting is usually mounted on posts near the path's edge. These lights have a soft glow which makes them ideal for nighttime walks.
 
  1. Garden Lanterns
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Another good option for illuminating pathways and paths is garden lanterns. These lights are designed to be used outdoors and are made with weatherproof materials. They are easy to install and can last up to 10 years if properly maintained.
 
  1. Landscape Lighting Kits
If you don't have enough time to do everything yourself, why not hire someone who does? Many companies offer landscape lighting kits at affordable prices. All you need to do is choose the size of the equipment you require and leave the rest to the professionals.

Driveway Lighting
 
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When it comes to lighting your driveway, there are many options that you can choose from. The first thing you need to do is determine what kind of lighting will best suit the needs and wants of your home. You may consider installing motion-activated lights, floodlights, or even solar lights. Whatever you decide to go with, remember that these lights must be placed high above the ground so that they won't cast shadows on your driveway. Another great choice is the in-ground low voltage paver lights, a perfect way to add visibility to your driveway and outdoor paths.

Retaining Wall Lights
 
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The retaining wall lights are the best for those who want to add style and elegance to their home. The lighting fixtures come in various sizes, shapes, and colors that will fit perfectly into any environment. They can be installed anywhere on the wall, including windows, doorways, and fireplaces. Retaining wall lights are available in both indoor and outdoor versions.

Deck Lights
 
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The Deck Lights are the most critical feature of a deck. They provide the best lighting for your deck, and they must be installed correctly to ensure that you get the best performance from them. Lights should be mounted on the underside of decking boards to direct the light onto the surface below. This ensures maximum illumination while keeping the glare off of your furniture.
 
These are just some of the landscape lighting ideas you can implement in your home. As long as you know how to pick the right products and where to place them, you can create a beautiful and safe environment for you and your family.

Garage Lights
 
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The best garage lights are the ones that you can use in various ways. They should be able to illuminate your car and provide enough light for you to work on it. If you're looking for something more than this, you might want to look into LED Garage Lights. These lights are incredibly bright and powerful, but they only consume about half the electricity compared to traditional bulbs.
 
You can easily find LED Garage Light online. Just make sure that you buy one tested by independent laboratories to ensure that it meets all safety standards. You can also find them in stores such as Home Depot.

Conclusion: Landscape lights help you walk safely down a flagged path at night, give you a place to spend some time with your family after work and school, and a safe place to play. Outdoor lighting reduces crime and deters burglars. Lighting is an essential for any home, but choosing where to put lights can be difficult. Outdoor lights are a great add-on to any garden, but they can also be expensive and complicated to install.

Don't compromise on safety! It is more important having the outside space well lit rather than just looking good. It will feel a lot safer to navigate. It will give you and your family space for entertainment and relaxation.

Are you trying to decide if you should install new landscape lights yourself or hire lighting professionals?
 
There are many moving parts to designing and implementing a lighting system. If you want to ensure that the system is working correctly, contact us for help! We can help you decide which outdoor landscape lighting ideas are best suited for your space, and we can help you choose them without any hassle.
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What are excavation services? Why do I need an excavation company?

You need excavation services to make a strong foundation if you're ready to start an industrial, residential or commercial construction project. This will help the building have a robust groundwork that'll assist in preventing damages from natural disasters, including weather disturbances.

What do excavation services involve?

Excavation services involve moving earth, soil, and rocks, among other materials using specialized equipment such as bulldozers, compact hydraulic excavators, dragline excavators, front-end loaders, skid loaders, and dump trucks.
 
Excavation services help with earthworks and play a significant role in wall shafts, tunneling, and trenching. Whatever kind of construction project you have, you'll need a solid foundation in addition to quality concrete. Proper excavation will fully support your infrastructure and improve its stability and structural integrity. You don't need heavy equipment alone for appropriate excavation. The kind of equipment required will vary depending on various aspects like soil moisture, soil stability, water tables, etc. The excavation contractors will also assess and inspect the foundation area before they begin working on it.

When do property owners need excavation services?

The excavation process requires a lot of analysis and planning. This is why it should be left to professional excavation contractors with the necessary skills and experience. A single small mistake can lead to a severe disaster. Below are circumstances when property owners need professional excavation services:

1. Site preparation

Excavation services are required when preparing a construction site, especially where land clearance is needed. Excavation plays a significant role in site preparation since it helps improve drainage and prepares the soil before the construction project commences.

2. Fortifying the foundation

Before a building project starts, a huge hole is usually dug to secure a solid foundation. Whether you want to build a residential, commercial, or industrial building, this is a must if you want the property to last longer.

3. Tree removal

If you want to remove trees from your home to create a landscape, increase recreational space or eliminate unwanted trees, you need excavation services.

4. Installation/repair of underground pipes

Water pipes are typically installed underground, where excavation is required to open up the ground. Again when they start leaking, the same procedure is necessary to repair them.

5. Cleaning up underground systems

If your septic tank starts malfunctioning or your storage tank starts leaking, it can cause environmental contamination by polluting soil and water. Excavation services will help prevent this contamination.

6. Make construction sites even

If the land you're about to start your construction project isn't even, you'll need excavation services to add slope or grade the ground to improve drainage.

7. Restoring property following a disaster

Disasters like massive storms can cause structural damage and tree felling on-premises. Depending on the extent of damage, they can block your pathways and driveways. In severe cases, these disasters can bring flood damage, resulting in drainage problems and soil erosion. Excavation services will help you clean up your premises and prevent additional damage.

In conclusion, these are some circumstances when property owners need excavation services. Hiring professional excavation contractors will guarantee you quality work - they are trained, certified and will have all the required licenses to handle the work.
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The Best Home Repairs To Do This Spring

The winter is over, and it is an excellent opportunity to fix cracked steps, stone walls, foundations, walkways, and patios.

Spring cleaning is usually all the rage at this time of year, but have you ever thought about home repairs? Winters can be especially harsh on your home, depending on your climate. While decluttering your home this season like Marie Kondo, spread some joy back into the hardscaping around your property with some masonry repairs.

Masonry and hardscaping refer to the stonework around your home that isn't made from living materials (i.e., grass or other plants around your house). Here are some of the most popular landscape construction repairs other homeowners make during the spring season.

Repair Your Foundation
 
Foundation issues can cause many problems for your home, so it's essential to quickly nip them in the bud. Minor cracks will cost around $500 to fix, but major issues can exceed $5,000. To ensure you're fixing the problem the right way, find out what kind of foundation you have and work with a contractor to correct the problem. The different types of foundations are the following:
  • Concrete slab/block
  • Pier and beam
  • Brick and block
  • Basement
  • Crawl space
Getting periodic structural reports from an engineer who has no biased opinion on selling you a solution will also give you insight into the health of your foundation.

Fill in the Cracks
 
While brick, stone, and concrete seem indestructible, these masonry materials need repair. Both brick and stone require maintenance after around 25 years, while stone should last a lifetime without extra maintenance. However, water can cause masonry to crack with continuous freeze-thaw cycles. If you notice cracks in your stonework, a hardscaping service can quickly repair these issues before they get worse. Another common problem is repointing, which entails replacing the mortar between the stone, brick, or concrete.

New Landscape Construction
 
With summer coming up, spring is one of the most popular times to start working on new landscape construction around your home. Whether you're looking at replacing existing walkways or building a new patio space, a hardscaping service can create the backyard of your dreams. Online resources from Pinterest and DIY blogs show step-by-step tutorials on how to do these projects yourself. Still, landscape construction companies provide premium quality that'll increase the value of your home.

Whether you're into landscaping this spring or not, home repairs can always come at a cost. A lot of the time, these will save you from future expenses and might even increase your property value too.
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Why plan spring hardscaping projects in the winter?

Spring is opening its doors. If you live in Massachusetts, you know how hard it is waiting to enjoy outside with family and friends.

Then, you realize that you were too busy all year long. You didn't have time to plan your dream outdoor living area or a renovation of your patio that you promised your wife to fix long ago.

Planning a hardscaping project is like planning a vacation; it takes budget preparation and other essentials. Finding contractors might be tricky in spring and summer because they are usually swamped. Projects might require more searching, but you'll have the eventual breathing room to complete them.

So what's next?

Here are some quick tips for planning your hardscape project:
  • During the winter or Fall, grab a glass of wine and your notebook and write down what you envision for the following year.
  • Do your research and collect some fresh ideas that you believe match your lifestyle and budget. Pinterest is an excellent way to start.
  • Find your calculator (you might need another glass of wine at this point) and try to estimate how much you will need to bring your dream to reality.
  • Contact your local landscaping contractor for an estimate. Yes, top-notch workmanship is essential for a landscaping project that compliments your house and enhances your family's quality of outdoor living.

But, do you want something done for this summer?

It's not too late! Contact us today; we may accommodate your project depending on size and timeframe.
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State Stone & Masonry

781-621-8661
Wakefield, MA 01880

Serving Wakefield, North Reading, Arlington, Winchester, Lexington and the surrounding area.

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