Add Outdoor Lifestyle Options

Consider adding a pergola or renovating a garage to give you more outdoor living space

a garage with sliding doors and an outdoor set
This multipurpose garage features a recycled brick floor to help make it a cool spot to sit in summer
A pergola is a great way to change the dynamics of time spent outdoors. 
 
A green pergola trains climbing plants to form a natural canopy, while man-made pergolas are comprised of timber, shadecloth, glass or other materials designed for sun protection. 
 
Investment in a pergola is usually a decision cherished for years to come.

Retractable fabric awnings are becoming increasingly popular, allowing you to control the amount of sun you want to let in. Their storage cassettes can be located under the eaves of roofs or on boundary walls.
 
A large market umbrella is an old favourite and does a great job. Cantilevered models take up minimal room, can be folded and stored away, and their bases set flush with the floor.
 
Another approach is to build a space specifically for shade such as a cabana, or use a rear garage. 
 
Landscape and exterior designer Will Dangar believes that working with what’s there but thinking outside the box often yields the best results. 
 
Says Will, ‘A garage can function as a space to escape the hot weather.’
 
So rather than cover an outdoor area, consider opening up the garage to the garden with sliding or bifold doors.
 

Clever materials 

Various engineered materials are suitable for shading pergolas. 
 
Multilayered polycarbonate products such as Suntuf and ClearVue from PSP offer lightweight, cost-effective alternatives to glass, and are more durable than fabric. 
 
With 99% UV protection and a range of colours, the material can suit any decorating scheme or design profile. It’s easy to work with and can be installed DIY for small home projects. 
 
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