If you've spent a lot of money building your patio and would like to be able to use it at any time of the year, including in the depths of winter, here are some tips to follow.
Invest in some outdoor lighting
Even if you won't be using the patio late at night, you should get some outdoor lighting for it if you want to use it in the winter since the sun sets earlier in the day. If you want to have dinner on the patio, you might find it to be too dark to see your food if you have no lights in this area.
Freestanding outdoor lights are a good option if your patio is large and you want to be able to move the lights around, according to which area you're using on a particular day. However, if you get bad storms in your area in the winter, you might need to take these lights inside during these storms to prevent the wind from blowing them over.
Fairy lights are another option; if your patio has an awning, you can string these along its edges. Alternatively, you can add them to a nearby exterior wall or string them in nearby trees. These will not provide a lot of functional lighting but will make the patio look cosy on chilly days and will be less likely to get knocked down on windy winter days than freestanding outdoor lamps.
Don't rely on blankets to stay warm
You might think that you can just wrap yourself in a blanket when you want to use the patio on cold winter days. However, you'll probably find that a blanket is not enough to keep you comfortable in this setting, as you might find that your hands and feet that are not covered by the blanket get numb; this could make dining or reading unpleasant.
As such, it's worth getting some type of heat source for your patio. If you'll be living in the property for a long time, it might be worth putting a fire pit in the centre of the patio; this will not only be an excellent heat source on winter days but will also enhance the patio's ambience and aesthetics. Alternatively, you could opt for a portable outdoor heater that you can move around to different areas of the patio and which you can easily take with you if you decide to move.