A great way to make your house seem bigger is to add a beautiful patio to it. If you skillfully take advantage of the natural landscaping in your yard, your patio will look and feel like it is a part of the house.
The style of your patio should go hand in hand with the style of your home. In other words, if you have an older house it would probably not look right to add on a new ultra modern patio. Likewise, if you have a newer home, you should be thinking of patio designs that look right with the modern aspects of your house.
The patio is really just an extension of your house so the style you use for your patio should be similar to what you have indoors.
How big and elaborate you make your patio will be determined by both the space available and your budget. Some patios are only big enough for a small table and a couple of chairs while others might have a full outdoor bar and kitchen along with the table and chairs. One of the more popular accessories you can get now is a portable table/fireplace. These are great when the weather turns a little colder and might extend the time you are able to use your patio.
The type of furniture you decide to use for your patio might depend somewhat on the weather in your area. Chairs and sofas with soft material cushions are not great choices for wet climates. Chairs and tables that are water resistant would make you life easier if it rains a lot. Likewise, if you live in a hot sunny environment, the sun will both fade and do other types of damage to any furniture you keep outside on your patio. In a sunny local, it is advisable to find furniture that will resist the sun and its harmful rays.
Plants and vegetation can be used to enhance the look of your patio. Potted plants always look great on patios and some bushes skillfully planted in the right areas will help define the shape of your patio. In addition, a tree or two might be planted to block out some of the sun and provide shade for your new patio.
The surface you decide to make your patio will also be crucial in defining its look and feel. Popular patio surfaces include concrete, flagstone, slate, brick, and stone. There are different advantages and disadvantages to each one of these surfaces so do some research before you choose.
Make sure you look through lots of magazines and visit your local furniture / home improvement stores for ideas before you start designing and building your new patio. Starting with a plan is always the best way to go.