We love our outdoor living in Florida and likely so will you if you move to the Sunshine State.

The combination of natural resources, beauty and a year-round temperate climate means enjoying 70-degree beach days in January, and only occasional appearances of heavy jackets.outdoor living

Northern Florida can be a bit cooler than Miami during the winter months, but if you prioritize outdoor living space in your new custom Florida home, expect very few days that you won’t be tempted to head out the back door or sliding glass doors.

Even that iconic feature, the Florida lanai, can be a year-round gathering spot if you tuck one or two ceiling fans in its roof, and a portable fire pit at a safe, warming distance.

We have other tips and tricks to share for versatile outdoor living. Read on!

Make the most of your space

You’ll have plenty of it if you build with us at ICI Homes. Our floorplans always include outdoor living space. You can explore what options will be available to you during your free customization consultation that’s available to every potential ICI Homes customer.

Maybe evening porch-sitting is an art in your household. Maybe your teenagers are lobbying for a swimming pool. Maybe you’re excited about finally having enough space for a lanai AND a vegetable garden.

The takeaway? Don’t get stuck in the one-function rut. You don’t have to with us.

Choose versatile furnishings

If you decide to place a big wooden picnic table in the middle of your new lanai, it’ll (A) be a beast to move and (B) a space hog.

You already have plenty of space in your new lanai. But what if you want the option of living even bigger at times? Say, hosting your husband’s high-school football team reunion?

Then that beast of a picnic table has to go. Like, lugged to the back of the yard by aging ex-linemen, then back again once the party ends. Who wants to deal with that?

Instead, think lightweight modular seating and side tables that can easily shift around the lanai to service a crowd. Opt for a summer kitchen on one side, and your buffet location is always set.

Accent with a few fun items such as cushy rocking chairs. Small ottomans can double as storage if you seek out those with removable lids, and also as seats and place settings for a cocktail hour.

Talk about versatile!

Plan for light and comfort

You know those terra cotta chiminea fire pots? That you can find at most stores’ garden shops and outdoor-living departments? Select one you like — or any other portable fire box — and your winters (such as they are in Florida) will always be comfortable.

If you’re a fireplace fan, talk to your floorplan designer — during your no-cost customization consultation — about the possibility of installing an outdoor fireplace.

A fire adds warmth and beauty to early-evening sunsets. It also makes s’mores a daily or nightly dessert option.

Whatever you do, don’t forget the ceiling fans! You’ll use those year-round in your new outdoor living space.

Ready for your new custom Florida home? Start the conversation here. opens in a new window