If the movies are to be believed, our summers involve endless outdoor parties and lazy poolside lounging. In reality, the summer heat pushes most of us inside, as we keep the AC cranked to the minimum temperature all day, slowly raking up massive energy bills.

The good news is that, with a little help from nature—and an experienced outdoor living space expert—you may be able to turn that fantasy into a reality. To help you beat the Virginia heat and lower your electricity bills at the same time, we talked to a top landscape designer at Perfect Pools.

So without further ado, here are four expert landscaping tips to cool your home:

1. Landscaping the East Side

Design your outdoor space in a way that seating spaces, such as the patio, are on the east side of your home. The afternoon sun is the hottest, and you want to make sure these spots are properly shaded during this time.

Focus on the South and West sides when planting trees because that’s where the afternoon sun will hit hardest. Shady trees or vine-covered pergolas are perfect in these locations.

2. Funnel the Breeze with Trees

Planting natural foliage around your home will give you substantial returns in just a few short years. Plants are known to lower the temperature of their surroundings by absorbing carbon dioxide.

Not only do they provide great cover against the sun, but they can also channel breezes that take away some of the heat from your home.

Additionally, they also provide an additional layer of privacy, making your backyard more intimate and safely tucked away from any prying eyes.

3. Install Calming Pools

Pools are an excellent way to cool off, and they enhance the overall look of your home. Homeowners are increasingly looking for pools that look like an extension of their house.

For example, natural swimming pools that are designed to imitate the look and feel of a natural body of water have soared in popularity over the last few years.

Calming Pools

4. Finish with Cool Colors

The color scheme you choose for your outdoor space can make all the difference. Darker colors are known to absorb heat, while lighter colors reflect light and remain cool.

Everything from the patio furniture and walkway to the swimming pool finish can be customized, so it’s best to choose lighter tones.

outdoor space

Keeping these expert tips in mind when updating your outdoor space this summer is sure to yield great results.

About Perfect Pools

Perfect Pools is a professional pool building and outdoor living space design company in Sterling, Virginia. With some of the best designers, landscape artists, and contractors on board, they offer excellent landscaping solutions along with flexible financing options.

For more information, call 571.267.7488.