Jeff Flowers on September 27, 2013 1 Comment Summer may be over, but fall is the perfect time to take advantage of everything your patio has to offer. It is the time of year that the leaves begin to turn beautiful shades of red, orange, and yellow. The sweltering summer days begin to wane and shift to a more comfortable, brisk environment. It is the time for football barbecues and perfect mornings to sit outside with a cup of coffee. image credit Most people set up their patio and never change it but it is one of the most versatile and enjoyable spaces your home has to offer. This is especially true if you plan on entertaining guests outdoors. The key is knowing the easiest ways to get more from your patio with very little effort. Here’s our favorite ways you can improve your patio, so you can enjoy it all year-round. 1. Choose Versatile Seating Options One of the simplest ways to give your patio a new, comfortable look is to choose versatile seating options. It doesn’t matter if you prefer metal furniture outdoors or more traditional wood or wicker seating, the key is versatility. While it is nice to have one or two chairs for a more intimate or casual setting, seating is typically the one limitation that prevents people from hosting larger get-togethers outdoors. Adding one or two long benches is a simple solution. You can add seat cushions or outdoor pillows to turn a simple wooden bench into a more comfortable yet versatile seating solution. The best part is benches are easy to move so it can be pushed aside when it’s not needed. 2. Entertain with an Outdoor Television Just because it’s football season doesn’t mean you need to spend your weekends indoors on the couch. Television technology is evolving at a rapid pace. There are now televisions which are specifically designed to be used and stored in an outdoor environment. They have screen coatings which prevent glare from becoming a problem. Some outdoor televisions can even connect directly to your Wi-Fi network so you wouldn’t have to worry about installing a cable outlet. Just like when you choose a television for your living room, outdoor televisions come with a large assortment of accessories you can buy to make your experience even better. Before you rush out to buy an outdoor TV for your patio, it’s important to consider how much space is available and where you plan to install/watch it. 3. Outdoor Beverage Refrigerator Nothing is worse than constantly running inside to get food and beverages for friends and family when you’re trying to spend time together outdoors. Not only is it inconvenient, but it also lets all your AC or heating out of the house. The simple solution is to have an outdoor beverage refrigerator available for your guests. The benefit of an outdoor only beverage station is that you can choose from a wide variety of sizes, so it fit your needs and available space. A portable beverage refrigerator, or even a kegerator, is not only a great way to provide your guests with easy access to food and drinks, they’re also portable and easy to move around. During the winter, if you’re not spending much time on your patio, you can move it in and use in other areas of the house. 4. Portable Ice Maker If your beverage refrigerator doesn’t have a built-in ice maker, it would be wise to have a portable ice maker readily available for your guests. This allows you to always have ice ready to serve, while preventing you and your guests from having to run in-and-out of the house constantly. It’s never been easier to find an inexpensive, yet dependable ice maker that’s designed to stand the elements outside. From the bite of a winter night to the summer heat, a quality ice maker should be durable enough to leave outdoors nearly year-round. Added convenience and cold beverages, all without leaving the patio. The days of a last-minute ice run are over. 5. Stay Warm With An Outdoor Heater As fall begins to turn towards winter the evenings will start to get cold quickly. Depending on where you live, that cold may already be nipping at you. Instead of moving the party indoors try using an outdoor heater. From table top to wall-mounted, there are a number of different heating options you can choose from. Take a look at your options, analyze your space and determine which type of heater will be the best for your patio. One of the most popular outdoor heating options is a fire pit. This allows you to sit back and enjoy the crackle of an open flame and keep warm at the same time. Instead of building a permanent fire pit, most people prefer the portable version so they can move it out of the way when the weather warms up again. Another option is the more traditional outdoor heaters which can be either propane or electric. With a simple flip of the switch, these patio heaters are the perfect solution when you don’t want to build and maintain a fire but still want to stay warm. 6. Plant a Garden An overlooked accent that makes every patio more appealing is the ambiance of a garden. Whether you’re growing flowers or vegetables, having a garden out there is a guaranteed way to make your patio look better. You don’t need a large plot, just a small, low-maintenance garden will do wonders for the look and feel of your patio. There’s a large variety of gardening equipment and supplies that can help you accomplish this, but all you really need to get started is a few decorative containers or hanging planters, and a bag of soil with some seeds. It’s easy to swap out your plants depending on the season. This helps ensure that your shrubbery, flowers and vegetables are always lush and green all year-round. Just be sure to cover your plants or move them inside before the deep freezes set in. 7. Cover Your Patio with a Canopy A simple yet effective way to help maintain your optimal temperature on your patio is by covering it. If you have an open patio the popular option is to use a stylish canvas, canopy or other temporary enclosure, as this allows you to quickly put it up and take it down. Installing a canopy can help keep the elements out, and your heat in. Depending on your patio, you may be better suited with a more enclosed or permanent solution. Be sure to weight your options before buying the first canopy or canvas you find. Improve Your Patio For Fall Just because the temperature is changing doesn’t mean you need to retreat indoors quite yet. Summer may be gone, but the beautiful season that is fall is just beginning. By adding a few key accessories and making a couple of improvements to your patio, it will be easy to enjoy everything the outdoors has to offer, even into the early winter months. Surely, we missed a few ways that you can improve your patio for fall. What would you add to this list? We’d love to hear your tips and suggestions in the comments below.