You already know you need to have a backyard oasis. But there is always at least one person who needs to know “Why to build an outdoor kitchen?”. And you better know the answer. Or 10 of them.
So why build an outdoor kitchen? There are at least 10 reasons to build an outdoor kitchen in the backyard, and are listed below:
- Increase house sellability
- Increase house resale value (120% ROI!)
- An inexpensive addition to a house
- Make your house (and yourself) popular
- Host more guests
- Make barbecuing convenient
- Make your own smoked cold cuts
- Save money on eating out
- Save on electrical bills (AC)
- Eat healthier
Brace yourself for a big discussion. Either you have to convince yourself, or your loved ones, arguments listed above should be enough to convince anybody that the backyard without an outdoor kitchen is incomplete. Vacant. Deserted.
Increase house sellability with outdoor kitchen
An outdoor kitchen is an addition that makes selling the house easier and faster. Realty Times advises it’s worth adding one even if you’re already planning to list. As the New York Times reports, Sally Slater, an associate real estate broker, offers this opinion saying, “If it’s going on the market in late spring, when everybody’s looking at summer with the mind-set of entertaining and outdoor living, it does help.”
On the other hand, people, who sold the house lately, say the outdoor kitchen was a wow factor that attracted buyers. Obviously buyers interested in having one, but that number tends to vastly grow since the pandemic in 2020 started.
To be sure the investment is really going to pay off it’s worth taking a few things into consideration. First of all, go around and check what your neighbors have in their backyards. Is outdoor kitchen rare in your area, or common? This knowledge will help you with design. The design and value of your outdoor kitchen should be adequate for the house and area.
The second thing is if you’re thinking about selling go for the stuff everybody wants to have in an outdoor kitchen: cooking surface, sink, under-counter refrigerator or refrigerator drawer, countertop space, cabinets, and lighting. The extravagant design might not help with sell, as people are rarely looking for one (unless this is an overall style of your property).
Since coronavirus pandemic begun, people are focusing even more on having fun in their own backyards. Outdoor kitchens are even more valuable now than they were before.
Increase house resale value with an outdoor kitchen
This is the subject widely discussed on the web. Does outdoor kitchen really increase property value? There is no easy answer, as it depends. I asked professionals around and what I’ve heard was actually calming.
Even though crazy outdoor kitchen ROI (Return on Investment) presented on multiple contractor websites is rather not true for most of the properties (they mention even 200%), professionals say in some states, like Texas, it can be up to 130%.
On the other hand, an addition like a swimming pool is -10% on average. If you’re lucky you don’t lose money, but will not make anything on it. It’s worth knowing that renewing inside of the home, like kitchen cabinets (very often $40,000), may not add any value to the property, as the house simply has to have kitchen cabinets.
How to build an outdoor kitchen so the outdoor kitchen ROI is the highest possible? By keeping an outdoor kitchen budget under control. It’s not the less you spend the more you gain but making a grand addition, in most cases, is not going to pay off either. First thing is to figure out where your house stands from a price range point of view. And going with outdoor kitchen solutions from the same level.
If your outdoor kitchen doesn’t have to be custom made (and some have to) go with prefabricated. It can be done in multiple finishes and look really good. And by the way, those finishes should also be your house alike. It’s important not only from the price point of view, but also buyers are looking for coherence. They very often want to see that outdoor kitchen matches house finishes.
DIYers, if they’re going to go with a style matching the property, can make most $ out of it. You have to be pretty handy though to be able to create an outdoor kitchen that accommodates a sink, desired appliances, and finishes.
What may not pay off? Everything that is over-the-top, like pizza ovens. If you’re planning to sell it is worth taking into consideration you may be selling to somebody who is into different stuff and is not going to value things dear to you.
I found a nice case-study on how to use an outdoor kitchen to increase property value. It’s regarding a remodel of an outdoor kitchen but brings a lot of information that is useful. Here it is – The Berkeley Craftsman.
An outdoor kitchen is an inexpensive addition to a house
If you lack space inside this can really be the least expensive solution to go with. An outdoor kitchen is not an inexpensive solution, but making a home addition is a huge one.
Homeadvisor.com made a survey for homeowners who built an outdoor kitchen recently. They gathered data from 145 people and researched it. It occurs that the average cost of an outdoor kitchen is in the range of $4,864 – $21,342. And with additions, like a pergola, it can go up to $100,000.
The same website wrote about home additions. The number that is $21,072 – $69,578, and can get up to $135,000.
So if you need more living space going for indoor-outdoor experience can be actually a smart move. It costs less, the timeline of construction is shorter, and it transforms a house into a party spot.
Make your house (and yourself) popular with an outdoor kitchen
There is usually this one popular house around that people tend to visit. If you’re not living in one at the moment and dreaming of it, an outdoor kitchen is the addition to consider.
First of all, an outdoor kitchen enlarges the living space by creating an indoor-outdoor experience. Thanks to it you’re able to host people in a bigger space.
Second of all, you get an attraction others may not have in their backyard. And even if they do, you can top it. You don’t have to, but can, add a pizza oven of a bar to draw people to your backyard. A TV, sound system, lighting, the projector, fire pit, will do the trick as well. Just figure what is the thing that is going to interest your family and friends.
Thanks to an outdoor kitchen people usually can host greater events for more guests. So it opens a new chapter in the home entertainment.
Host more guests with outdoor kitchen appliances
Cooking outdoors is a kind of theater, a major part of a barbecue party. There is a pleasure in watching the food being cooked. Creating this experience indoors is difficult, if possible.
The great advantage of using a grill is its size. Usually, it fits more food than any indoor cooking appliance. Not only amount matters – food put inside can be mixed. So a variety of meats can be prepared with veggies at the same time! And when you want to switch to fish it’s just a burn-off away, not cleaning everything and dishwasher cycle away. And on top of that after another burn-off baking pizza can start.
Another one is the speed of cooking. Traditional cooking is less efficient. It’s not only less food prepared simultaneously, but also it takes way longer to prepare it. So cooking for more people with grill is easier, faster, and not alienating.
Cooking outdoors is an experience that can be easily shared. And there is a value to it. Did you have conversations you do have while grilling in an indoor kitchen?
And the last one, but kind of major one, is cleaning. It is so much easier and faster while cooking outside.
Make barbecuing convenient with an outdoor kitchen
Advantages of barbecuing are well known but what outdoor kitchen adds to it? Well, quite a few benefits! The first one is convenience.
Imagine you can cook outside as you cook inside. With everything under your hand. Fridge, sink, countertop space. You’re able to comfortably prepare any meal you wish. And do not have to constantly go to your kitchen.
You do not bring mess on your shoes inside, and you do not let all the insects in, while making these constant passages. You’re also less tired at the end of the day, as you did not just finish a half-marathon.
In my opinion countertop space is crucial for comfortable cooking outside. And this is the major benefit of even a very small outdoor kitchen. It gives a space to work and put dishes on. This is an upgrade that makes a serious difference.
If you’d like to go for even more comfort there are drawers you can marinate food in and warm buns. These features bring outdoor cooking to the next level of convenience, which is inaccessible from a standing grill point of view.
Make your own smoked cold cuts in an outdoor kitchen
This is something your family is going to love you for. At least I know I love my mum for it (not only for it, but still).
Making cold cuts by yourself is a truly amazing skill. It gives a tone of satisfaction and a lot of healthy food on the table. Once tasted well-prepared ham is going to keep you away from ham-like-products in a grocery store. The amount of taste fitting even a teeny-tiny slice is hard to believe and incomparable to anything else.
The process of preparation is long-lasting, as the meat has to be prepared a few days before smoking. But this time does so much good to the meat, that it is totally worth it.
Save money on eating out with an outdoor kitchen
Do you know how much money an American household spends on average on eating out? U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics says it’s $3,459! This is a serious amount of money, as it’s one-fourth of the total amount spent on basic shelter. And this is not a full amount spent on food. It’s only the number for eating out.
And what is the most expensive meal to pay for outside? Dinner, which is on average more than $28. As the research says: “In fact, spending on dinner away from home was about the same amount as the combined spending for breakfast and brunch, lunch, and snacks and nonalcoholic beverages.”
Interestingly the meal people spend most on is the one that an outdoor kitchen makes really attractive. So how about making some savings on eating out and preparing super-attractive and healthy meals at home?
Save on electrical bills (AC) with an outdoor kitchen
An outdoor kitchen was invented to cook outside while it’s too warm to cook inside. They can be found in all of the countries with high temperatures. The one presented above is from Grece.
So how can you save on AC with an outdoor kitchen? Basically copycat wise people who came with summer kitchen idea. When it’s hot it’s better not to cook indoors, as it makes the temperature inside grow. When it’s growing the AC has to work longer to make the climate inside nice and cool. So cooking inside during warm months is not only less comfortable but more expensive as well.
The longer the AC works the more has to be paid for the electrical bills. In Santa Barbara, air conditioning is responsible for 50% of an electrical bill. Making it less is good not only to your wallet but also to the environment.
Eat healthier thanks to an outdoor kitchen
It seems crazy that barbecuing may lead to a healthier lifestyle? Well, it really can.
When you’re eating out you never know what they put on your plate (unless it’s always a salad). You have absolutely no control over the food that is delivered to you. Salt amount, types of oils used to create the dish, flavor enhancers, quality, and freshness of food. All of these factors are a mystery. There is a study published in Nature that shows that it doesn’t even matter if it’s a restaurant or a fast-food. You can read more on that on Times.com.
Eating healthy starts very often from cooking at home. And making cooking easier and more attractive makes eating healthy easier. And this ease is necessary to make it a habit.
When people think of foods made on the grill they very often come with meats. And it’s not fair. You can make a whole lot of veggies on the grill, and they taste delicious. Peppers, zucchini, tomatoes need nearly no preparation prior to grilling and taste so damn good. Same with portobello mushrooms. You can take a hint from the foodrepublic.com article.
Grilling can be healthier also with proper appliances. Is though the charcoal grill is more affordable, the gas grill seems to be a better option. To avoid PAHs and HCAs in the food it should not be prepared over flames. It’s also worth considering lower temperatures for cooking – and this is a feature gas grill offers.
And even if you’re not going to prepare salads on your grill you probably are still going to eat healthier than out, as you’ll have control over ingredients used for dish preparation.
Did the list help you in persuading somebody to build an outdoor kitchen? Did you look for something you did not find in the article? Please let me know in the comment section.