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The Best Time of Year to Build an Outdoor Living Space in Richmond

Updated: Feb 15, 2023

There are a lot of variables that go into building a custom outdoor living space. Among one of the most important is a variable that many people tend to overlook when thinking about the process. This variable is timing. Choosing the right time of year to start constructing your outdoor living space can be the difference between having your pool ready for the next summer season, or navigating unhappy workers and construction delays.


So, what is the best time of year to kick off your custom outdoor living project with Water and Earth here in Richmond? The short answer is fall. It might seem counterintuitive to start working on an outdoor space before the season with the least outdoor recreation. In reality, starting work on your outdoor space now gives you the best chance for your backyard to be ready when you actually need it. Here are three reasons why:


Design Time

Great work takes time. Many homeowners believe that approaching a designer in early spring will give them enough time to create a space that can be built and ready for summer. Unfortunately, custom spaces take a little more legwork to create.


Some design build companies can crank out a cookie cutter design in a matter of days and begin working immediately. However, if you’re looking for a space that is tailor made to your home, your lifestyle, and your aesthetic preferences, cookie cutter just won’t cut it. At Water and Earth, it’s our mission to create spaces that are a reflection of the people who will live inside of them. But this process takes time–up to a few months. None of this is idle time.


We put a great deal of value on client feedback. This means that not only will you be presented with more than one initial design option, but your design will also go through renders and revisions as you see fit. At the end of the day, starting in fall allows you to take your time to tweak the design to your heart’s content, and end up with a space that you truly love.


Worker Comfort

The happier your construction team is, the better product you will end up with. While great contractors produce great work no matter the time of year, having happy workers in your backyard definitely gives you an edge. The hot, humid months of summer in Richmond, VA are great for lounging by the pool. They’re less pleasant for laying concrete or building a paver patio.


Starting your outdoor living project in early fall means that a bulk of the building can get done in the cooler months. This means happier workers who are more likely to take their time rather than rush to finish so they can get out of the sun and into air conditioning. And workers taking their time means a better final product.


Avoiding The Busy Season

Another benefit to starting your backyard renovation in the fall is the fact that you can avoid the busy season. It’s no surprise that the bulk of work on outdoor living spaces tends to be concentrated in the late spring and summer months. This forms the busy season of outdoor renovation. And the busier the season, the more likely you are to run into delays.


Whether it’s a labor shortage or a product delay due to squeezed supply chains, the higher the demand for a service, the more stressful it may be to get it. Starting well before summer, in fall, will allow you to avoid this period of intense spring and summer demand, giving you a higher chance for smooth sailing.


Ready When You Actually Want It

We understand that many homeowners don’t realize the amount of time or logistics that will go into a backyard renovation. If they did, we think many clients would approach us long before they expect to have their space finished. As it stands, however, most people tend to think about what they want their yard to be like for summer in the spring. We would love to change that.


The process of creating your new outdoor living space can take more time than you might initially expect. Because of this, the perfect time to begin the process is now. Starting in the fall will allow ample time for design, allow builders to work in more temperate conditions, and is the best chance you have for avoiding the busy season. The best part of all? Beginning your renovation in fall will help ensure it is ready for next summer–when you actually want to use it.


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In search of more good advice? From answers to all your FAQ’s, to walkthroughs of in process projects and design inspiration, it’s all happening on our blog. Looking for daily updates? Follow us on Instagram!



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