By making a gorgeous, eco‑friendly patio, you are giving your family a sense of safety, security and pride.
But this can be done without any of the fuss of installing a solar panel, and without having to worry about the environmental impact of your project.
The patio is a perfect example of a design which can be made eco-conscious.
The design requires little in the way of solar energy, so it is ideal for outdoor events.
The beauty of the patio is in its design, said architect and landscape architect Andrew Jones, from Jones Architects.
“There are so many different uses for this kind of design, it really depends on the circumstances, so you need to have a little bit of creativity,” he said.
“The thing that really works well for us is making a space where you can have a beautiful outdoor setting.”
He said this could be in the form of a patio or garden, or in a living room, a kitchen or dining room.
There are many other types of terraces, and they could be used for other purposes, too.
“It’s a great example of something that could be put on the property, and if it’s going to be a dining room, then it might be a nice space for a TV or a small TV set,” Mr Jones said.
The biggest thing is that you need a design that is well-constructed, with lots of attention to detail, he said.
“The beauty is that it’s so simple and easy to do,” he added.
The best time to start thinking about the design is when it is relatively small, Mr Jones advised.
“When you are talking about a small space, it can really be quite easy to lose focus, and you’ll have to work a bit harder,” he explained.
“If you’re starting with a space that is a little bigger than that, you might find that you’ve got more work to do to get it all lined up.”
How to make the most of solar panelsThe design process can be daunting, Mr Hughes said.
“There are lots of different types of solar systems, and so there are different techniques you need, so there’s lots of things that can go wrong.”
For example, if you have a large amount of solar panel installed, there will be problems, he advised.
“It’s really important that you take some time to consider what’s best for your project, because otherwise you can just end up with some really ugly panels,” he advised.
“If you do want to make it more environmentally friendly, there are plenty of great resources online, MrJones said.