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Patio Furniture Buying Guide
Table - Garden

Patio Furniture Buying Guide

Are you in the market to purchase new patio furniture, but you’re not sure what to look for or where to start? There are several things to consider when buying patio furniture. Style, material, budget, layout, size, comfortability, portability, and durability are all factors you’ll want to weigh out before investing in outdoor furniture. You’ll save money, time, and energy by choosing the best, most durable furniture for your space from the get-go.

Let us help! Here at Fixer, we’ve put together a patio furniture buying guide to help you make the right decision for your unique space. Not to mention, we’re always available to assemble your newly purchased patio furniture. Quickly make an appointment online at www.fixer.com/book.

Here are some things to consider when shopping around…

Most common patio furniture materials

Wicker, metal, plastic, and wood are the most common materials for patio furniture. Each of these options has its strengths and weaknesses. You’ll want to think about the conditions and environment in which the furniture will live, as well as your personal preferences and priorities. Will it be exposed to harsh weather conditions? What is the aesthetic you’re going for? What feels most comfortable? Let’s explore the differences between these materials.

Table - Wicker

Wicker patio furniture

Wicker refers to the type of weaving done to make this style of furniture. It’s typically created using various materials such as bamboo, cane, rattan, or synthetic materials. The pros of wicker furniture include several color options, strong, durable, and lightweight. Many are attracted to its natural, tropical vibe making it an excellent choice for your summer soirée!

If you choose to purchase wicker furniture, make sure to check the craftsmanship and quality. Inspect for any loose parts and areas that may not have been weaved properly, which could unravel. Not only is loose weaving bad for the longevity of your furniture, but it can also cause discomfort.

When it comes to affordability, some wicker furniture can come with a higher price tag. In most cases it’s due to the use of natural materials and the process in which it was made; usually handwoven is more expensive. If you like the aesthetic of wicker, but want a more budget-friendly option, opt for a set made of resin or other composite material.

Deck - Deck installation

Metal patio furniture

Steel or aluminum are super popular materials for residential outdoor patio furniture. Metal furniture is often modern-looking, strong, sturdy, and durable. There are, however, some major differences between steel and aluminum.

Steel is typically more susceptible to rust. To avoid rust & corrosion it is better to purchase a set that has a powder coat to help protect it. Also, storing this type of set indoors during the off-season is a good idea to prolong its life and prevent deterioration from moisture over time. Steel furniture tends to be heavier than aluminum. If you want to be able to move your furniture around with ease, this may not be the ideal choice. On the other hand, if you live in an area that has strong winds or frequent storms, having a set that stays put might be a good thing!

Aluminum is lightweight, rustproof, and more affordable than steel, however, it is more susceptible to dents or warping. Aluminum naturally disperses the heat, greatly reducing its temperature, and will not trap heat like steel. Aluminum patio furniture is especially popular amongst urban dwellers with small patios and balcony spaces.

Charcoal - Barbecue

Plastic patio furniture

Pros to plastic patio furniture include its lightweight design, affordable, rust-free, and easy to clean. You may be wondering what plastic is best for outdoor furniture. HDPE or high-density polyethylene is the most common form of plastic used to make patio furniture. It’s cost-effective, but the high-density version (HDPE) is required for outdoor applications since it’s far more durable and weather resistant. In fact, some outdoor wicker furniture is made with this kind of plastic.

Lower quality plastic, like PVC or polyvinyl chloride, is another common plastic you may see, but tends to be less durable and will become brittle over time. Although, a bonus to plastic patio furniture is that it’s typically made with recycled plastic and it often can be recycled again once you’re done with it.

Garden furniture - Wood

Wood patio furniture

Many are drawn to the natural beauty of wood patio furniture and how easy it is to work with, but when it comes to outdoor usage, not all types of wood are created equal. Softwoods like pressure-treated pine, cedar, and fir are inexpensive and commonly used for indoor furniture, but do not stand up well in the outdoor elements. Hardwoods, on the other hand, are much more durable and can last longer when cared for properly.

Redwood, cedar, and teak are the most common wood choices for outdoor furniture. Redwood is known for being durable in weather conditions. Cedar is naturally resistant to rot and insects. Teak is one of the best choices due to being resistant to weather, rot, and insects. Teak is also low maintenance and doesn’t fade or discolor. The drawback to teak is that it’s expensive can be harder to get than locally sourced wood.

Wood can be an incredibly beautiful choice, but also keep in mind wooden patio furniture can get quite heavy. This can be an advantage or disadvantage depending on your environment.

How much patio furniture should I buy?

Consider buying a set if you need several pieces for a cohesive look and to save a bit of money. It’s a great idea to measure your space and jot down the numbers so you can figure out what will fit where. It’s good to have plan ahead of time for how many seats and configuration you desire. Patio sets come in many shapes and sizes, ranging from sectionals or several smaller pieced combinations.

Image - Stock photography

What pieces of patio furniture do I need?

Consider your lifestyle and how you will most often use your patio or deck space. Do you like to have BBQs with friends and family? If so, invest in a set that includes a dining table. It’s also not a bad idea to purchase an umbrella for your table to keep your guests out of direct sunlight while dining. If you’re going for a more relaxing vibe or have an outdoor fire pit, consider a sofa set or an arrangement of large comfy chairs. Do you have a pool and intend to do a lot of sunbathing? Make sure to add in a few chaise lounge chairs, with or without cushions. Don’t forget to add a beverage cart to keep the drinks cold!

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For small spaces

If you can’t fit a whole patio furniture set, opting for stools or folding chairs and tables that take up a lot less space could be your solution. Then you can easily store them in a closet when not in use.

Great places for buying patio furniture

There are many retailers from big box stores to online retailers that sell high-quality outdoor furniture to suit a variety of budgets. Here’s a list of retailers broken down by type of store…

Big Box Stores

  • Walmart
  • Target
  • Lowes
  • Home Depot
  • Menard’s
  • Ikea

Online Retailers

  • Amazon
  • Overstock
  • Wayfair

Warehouse Clubs

  • Sam’s Club
  • Costco

Specialty Furniture Retailers

  • Crate & Barrel
  • Pottery Barn
  • Article

Best time to buy?

The best time to snag a deal on patio furniture is typically early in the season (March), during holiday sales, or toward the end of the summer season when they start to mark down any remaining seasonal inventory. You might even be able to save some cash by purchasing items that were used for display at some of your big box stores.

We hope this guide will help you decide what’s right for you in terms of quality, design, price, and maintenance requirements, so you can make an informed decision and get the best patio furniture for your outdoor space. Don’t forget to contact Fixer if you need help assembling your new patio furniture!

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