Summer is almost here, so you can start looking forward to spending time outside with the family. The warm weather also means that kids can finally get plenty of fresh air and exercise instead of being cooped up indoors. Creating a fun outside space for your kids is a great way to keep them entertained.
There are hundreds of different styles and types of outdoor play equipment for kids to choose from. One of the most popular items is the outdoor playhouse. It can be used in a multitude of ways and is limited only by the child’s imagination.
If you’re thinking about purchasing an outdoor playhouse, there are a few things you need to consider before you buy.
Here are our top five tips for buying an outdoor playhouse for kids:
Choose the Material Best for You
Playhouses fall into two main categories – wood and plastic. The type of material you choose depends on your needs:
- Choose wood if:
- You want a playhouse that blends into the natural environment and looks traditional.
- You don’t mind treating it with wood paint every year to prolong its life.
- You aren’t planning to move it from its location after installation.
- You want something very durable.
- Choose plastic if:
- You want the playhouse to stand out from the surrounding environment.
- You don’t want to have to worry about maintenance.
- You want something you can move easily.
- Your budget is at the lower end of the scale.
Remember That Kids Grow!
Kids grow fast. Therefore purchasing a tiny playhouse for a toddler won’t be any good for a kid that’s five or six years old. Instead, try to future-proof your playhouse by purchasing one that will appeal to kids of various ages.
Playhouses can feature a multitude of activities, including traditional swings, sandboxes, and slides, rope nets, zip lines, and towers. Before buying, consider how appropriate they are for your kids and whether or not they’ll soon outgrow them.
Decide Which Design Features are Important to You
Since there are many playhouse designs on the market, it’s wise to make a list of design features that are essential to you. This will help you choose the right playhouse for your kids.
For example, do you want:
- One story or two?
- Additional play equipment like slides and swings?
- A themed playhouse, such as pirates, fairies, or a shop?
- A large house or a small one? Make sure you measure the area to find out how big you can go.
- Plenty of windows for natural light?
- An area to keep toys tidy?
- A playhouse that’s secure from the elements?
Keep Safety at the Forefront
A decent playhouse will have safety features built into the design. All edges and rails should be smooth and splinter-free. Any windows in the house should be plexiglass. Doors must have safety hinges.
All ladders, handles, and other climbing features must be secure and sturdy. Balcony or tower barriers should be high enough to prevent falls. If anything on a playhouse appears unsteady, unsafe, or flimsy, steer clear of it.
Place Your Outdoor Playhouse in a Good Location
For safety, any kind of children’s play equipment should be placed so you can see it from the house. This allows you to keep an eye on the kids while you go about your day. Additionally, the playhouse needs to be in a location that’s clear of hazards, such as poisonous plants and broken concrete or tiles.
As kids tend to play outside for hours, you will also want to consider how much direct sunlight the playhouse gets. It’s best to have it in a location that receives at least partial shade. This helps avoid the risk of kids getting too much sun exposure.
The area needs to be flat to ensure the playhouse remains sturdy. If you only have a sloped garden, you will need to flatten an area first. Consider laying some concrete or placing it on a solid area such as a patio or terrace to provide a proper base for the playhouse.
Once you have narrowed down your requirements, you can start shopping around. Don’t just buy the first one you see. Compare prices from different retailers or wait for a sale event. There are a lot of great playhouses for sale out there and you can save yourself a good few dollars by shopping wisely.
No matter your budget, the playhouse you purchase will be priceless for your kids. Get a great deal on an outdoor playhouse for kids and look forward to a wonderful fun summer.