This Season’s Hottest Trend: Fire Features!
Whether it’s a fireplace, fire pit or fire table, fire features are the hottest trend in the exterior living industry right now.
“We have landscapers who tell us they’ve installed more fire features this past year than in all the years they’ve been in business combined,” said Missy Henriksen, Vice President of Public Affairs for the National Association of Landscape Professionals. “Fire is the biggest fall trend this year. People are looking for things they enjoy inside their home that they can take to enjoy outside.”
Fire is the perfect backdrop for socializing, but depending on what kind of feature you select, the feature can be used as an accent, for warmth, for cooking or for simply creating a mood or ambiance.
PROS of Having a Fire Feature
Fire features offer relaxing, tranquil spaces and are ideal for bonding. No matter the size of your family or the event you plan on hosting, here are some great pros when adding a new fiery addition to your home:
- Fire features are universal, no matter what your family looks like it’s a hardwired behavior for people to want to gather around a fire.
- Fire features create a place for people to gather to share stories, to cook, to help spice up a meal, or to experience ‘camping’ at home by fixing a meal outside once a week or more.
- A fire feature can expand the length of time you can enjoy your outdoor living, deck, patio or yard because of the warmth.
via Designs by Sundown
Things to Look For in a Fire Feature
“The feature you select depends on how you want to use it, what you are looking for, if you socialize a lot, or will be doing a lot of cooking on it, or if you just want something to create a mood for the living space or both,” Henriksen said.
- Take time to look at your lifestyle and how you plan to use the feature. You can install more than one feature. Some homeowners have a fireplace next to their home, and a fire pit in the yard and a fire table in their dining area.
- Do you want to do high or low-tech? Fireplaces can be low-tech, and be wood burning, or they can propane and turned on with a switch or smartphone app.
- Fire pits are more open. This enables you to have as many guests as you want around the fire and it allows you to cook more.
- Fireplaces tend to be situated in a wall, with fewer places around it to sit. A fireplace is more of a focal point for entertaining. The seating options are limited. You’re seated in front of, rather than around the fire.
- Fire tables, where there’s a channel in a table where the fire is, are more for setting a mood. There is some warmth, but mostly they’re for ambiance and atmosphere and used primarily for entertaining since you can’t cook over them.
Picking a Feature and an Installer
- Take time to find the right feature for your home. When it comes time to have it installed you don’t necessarily have to have the company you buy the feature from install it. However, fire features aren’t a DIY project. When choosing to install a fire feature of any kind, bring in a professional. They’ll get the proper permits and install it correctly. The last thing you need is a rejected insurance claim if there is a fire or issue with your feature.
- Talk with friends and family members, look for referrals to companies they’ve found that have done a great job with their feature.
- “Homeowners should do business with national, state or trade associations. They’re more likely to be current with trends, laws and best practices,” Henriksen said.
- When you find an installer ask them how long their company has been in business. Have they done other installations like what you want? Do they have photos they can show you, or better yet, can you contact other families for their reviews?
- Finally. Ask if the company is accredited or certified. Are they licensed and insured? Remember, they’re going to be installing gas lines in or around your home. If something goes wrong, and it shouldn’t, you want to be covered.
Fire features are the most popular fall trends in interior and exterior design. Knowing what features suite your needs will have you serving up some warm ambiance and a good time sooner than you think!