Homeowners who relax and take their time in designing a new outdoor living space enjoy the process and are more satisfied with the finished project

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Backyard resorts can feature swimming pools, spas, fireplaces, seating areas, outdoor kitchens and more.

By Mitch Allen

One of the big societal changes that Covid-19 has helped escalate is an emphasis on the home as a place to relax and enjoy time with our friends and family. Rather than spending money on resort vacations, beach houses, and cruises, more of us are investing in creating similar experiences in our own backyard—with patios, fireplaces, ponds, outdoor kitchens, covered seating areas, swimming pools and more.

If you’re interested in creating your own backyard resort, Exscape Designs founder Bill Dysert has some important advice for you: take your time.

“We’ve found that homeowners who take their time and enjoy the design process are especially satisfied with the final outcome,” Bill says. “After the development of the initial concept, you should sit on it for a while. Take time to refine it and consider the multitude of material selections out there. There’s no reason to pressure yourself to get to the installation process too quickly.”

This concept makes right now the best time to get started because you can spend the winter fine tuning your design and be better assured of getting exactly what you want.

“The design process should be fun,” Bill insists. “There’s a lot to consider. For example, for your patio, do you want concrete, decking, pavers, or natural stone? What about the overhead beams? We’ll guide you and make recommendations, but the more time you take to explore the options, the better.”

Bill also recommends not doing everything at once. Instead, develop a master plan, then complete it in stages over several years.

The professional designers at Exscape Designs will create a master plan for your outdoor space, which can be completed in several phases over time. The plan also includes a 3-D concept image giving you a hyper-real sense for exactly what your dream backyard will look like.

“You want a cohesive design to match your home and landscape, then a phased-in approach to tackle it over, say, 10 years,” Bill explains. “Maybe do the patio and fire pit one year, then do the covered kitchen area a couple of years later, then the swimming pool in a few more years. This way you don’t end up settling due to an arbitrary finish date, and you won’t break the bank or use too much of your home equity.”

Total Outdoor Living Experts
Exscape Designs isn’t just a contractor. They are an experienced team of “total outdoor living experts,” which means they know how to handle all the nuances related to a project to maximize your enjoyment. These include essential requirements like fencing and electrical services, as well as resort-style options, like waterfalls, spas, fire features, shade structures, landscape lighting, a grilling area, and home audio.

Plus, many builds involve electricians, plumbers, masons and a host of other sub-contractors, not to mention architectural plans, permits, inspections, trucking, zoning variances, and knowing how to work with architectural review boards.

“That’s the beauty of working with us,” says Bill. “Our clients are busy professionals, so we handle every single detail from start to finish. That takes the worry and stress out of the project. Behind the scenes, we’re taking care of scheduling conflicts and resolving issues with zoning boards so the homeowner doesn’t have to.”

The design process usually takes two to four months, Bill says, so doing that process over the winter makes perfect sense.

Although this image looks like a photo, it is actually a highly realistic, computer-generated rendering of the architectural drawing on the adjacent page.

“The overall timeline takes several months to a year depending on the scope of the project and the number of approvals and city engagements required,” Bill adds. “Every community is different. The ideal time frame is to develop the design during the winter so you’re enjoying your new space next summer. Right now, we’re doing a lot of initial design meetings online with Zoom, but also in person while practicing social distancing. The best way to get started is to have a family meeting to determine what you want, then give us a call.”

Landscaping Services and Snow Plowing
In addition to stunning design/build projects, Exscape Designs offers full-service landscape maintenance for both residential and commercial clients. The company has bundled the top five landscape services into a single, convenient annual package, featuring spring clean-up, lawn and bed maintenance, pruning and mulching, lawn care, and fall clean-up.

Exscape Designs also offers commercial snow plowing for office buildings, shopping centers, condominiums, hotels and more. In anticipation of a harsh winter, the company is currently hiring responsible snow plow drivers and shovelers. Visit ExscapeDesigns.com/careers to complete a simple online employment application.

The Exscape Designs’ offices and design center are located at 10121 Kinsman Road in Novelty. The company serves all of Northeast Ohio. For more information or to schedule a free initial consultation, call 440-729-0011 or visit ExscapeDesigns.com. You may also visit Houzz for idea books, example of the company’s work, customer testimonials and more.

Categories: Eastside Home & Garden