Like us, you have no doubt spent more time outdoors in the last 18 months than you thought possible. The pandemic has meant that we have all been socialising outside more than we ever would have done, both at home and when going out…and that’s a trend that’s not looking to end any time soon.
As summer draws to a close, now is the ideal time to be thinking about your outdoor space, how you can improve it over the winter months ready for next season and, most importantly, how you can make it work for you both socially and financially. Recent industry reports have indicated a ROI of between 100% and 200% on homes with outdoor kitchens compared to homes without. So, while an outdoor kitchen might be a significant investment, it is always a sound one.
Here are answers to some of our most frequently asked questions when it comes to choosing an outdoor kitchen.
How much does an outdoor kitchen cost?
This is perhaps the most asked question, and to be honest, it very much depends on the size, design and specification of your equipment and cabinetry. No two outdoor kitchens are the same, but what we can assure our customers is that we can design something to suit every budget. Whether you choose a firepit from Kadai, a luxury grill from Fire Magic, a Renson canopy or a Vlaze unit, there are ways to achieve the outdoor kitchen of your dreams.
Will it increase the value of my home?
The rise in popularity of outdoor kitchens in the UK has been fairly recent, compared to Australia and the US. In a survey conducted by Casual Living Magazine in the States, 49% of homeowners had already added an outdoor living and cooking area to their home. And, of those who hadn’t, about 25% said that they were intending to add one within a year. Whilst the UK’s weather may not be able to compete with those of warmer climes, outdoor kitchens in cold climates are gaining in popularity. A lot of this is down to the quality of the materials and appliances that are now available, as well as the availability of an excellent range of outdoor canopies and heaters on offer.
How can an outdoor kitchen improve my restaurant business?
If your business premises are lucky enough to have the space, then an outdoor kitchen can increase the capacity of your restaurant by effectively adding in a second cooking and prep space. Guests will also love the fact that they can see the cooking in action, and the smell of a grill or a pizza oven in action is enough to tempt any passers-by. Our suppliers offer some great options for commercial use, which not only cook to professional standards but also look amazing.
Will an outdoor kitchen give me more space?
Yes, yes, yes! If you have a fairly small kitchen, rather than remodelling what you have inside, consider adding a kitchen outside to give you the best of both worlds. This is often a more cost-effective option and gives you the versatility of two areas over one. It also comes with the added benefit that an outdoor kitchen is unlikely to need planning permission as it’s not considered to be a permanent structure.
I’m worried I won’t use my outdoor kitchen to its fullest extent?
As long as you take time to consider the design and location of your outdoor kitchen, you may find that, like us, you use it more than your indoor one. In the UK, it’s a good idea to consider some form of canopy, gazebo or shelter for inclement weather, and a heater or firepit will add warmth on cold days. Entertaining and socialising at home suddenly becomes much more appealing when you have a lovely al fresco kitchen and eating space in which to do so…who knows, you might find yourself dining out less, which will offer a cost saving in itself.
Are there any other benefits to an outdoor kitchen?
Here at Heart, Smoke and Soal, we believe that an outdoor kitchen also offers health and wellbeing benefits. Spending time outdoors is scientifically proven to help everything from improving your short-term memory and lowering stress levels to helping with fatigue, depression and anxiety.
Are you ready to invest in your own outdoor kitchen?