Which patio furniture set is best?

Few things set the scene for a leisurely, joyful evening like sitting outdoors with friends and loved ones, chatting and laughing under the stars. Sitting in comfort while you enjoy balmy summer nights means having the right patio set with all the comforts you need. You’ll want one that feels cozy for conversation but right for the amount of space available.

If you’re looking for a great, all-purpose patio furniture set that fits most lifestyles, try the Erie Lake Brown Five-Piece Wicker Outdoor Patio Conversation Seating Sofa Set.

What to know before you buy a patio furniture set

Size

Big, overstuffed patio furniture sets with fancy chaise lounges might catch your eye in that catalog, but before you hit the buy button, take a moment to measure your space. While it’s easy to be enamored of a particular style, the fit will make the most significant difference in how good the set looks in your yard. If you’re looking at a set with a sofa or loveseat, two chairs and a coffee table, add the depth of all pieces together, then add 15 feet — 5 feet for walking space behind each of the seating clusters, plus 2.5 feet between the seats and the table. If this measurement exceeds the size of your available space, look for a different configuration or shop for furniture designed for tighter spaces. 

Material

Unless you’ve got ample indoor space to bring in all your outdoor furniture during harsh weather, you’ll want to get patio furniture that can handle changes in temperature. While natural materials look great, if you live in an area where temperatures dip below freezing for part of the year, aim for polyethylene rattan or other synthetic materials that can endure the freeze/thaw cycle better than wicker and wood.  

Style

The outdoor area of your home should feel like a natural extension of your indoor style. It can be a chance to play with a new color palette — think of the area as an additional room or even rooms, depending on the size — but it should still flow cohesively from indoors to out. If you have a very modern aesthetic indoors, you’ll want to opt for sleek and minimalistic lines in your patio furniture. If you have a homier, more classic feel indoors, mirror that outside with warm colors and overstuffed cushions.

What to look for in a quality patio furniture set

Color

As is the case indoors, the “room” that is your patio or deck should have one or at most two main colors plus an accent color. There are many ways to bring a fun accent color outdoors: the plates and serving bowls, the planters and even the throw blanket you offer guests as the evening gets chilly.

Think of what you’ll choose as your accent color as you’re choosing the color scheme of your patio furniture set so you can pull it all together. Some popular choices for furniture are beige and brown with red or teal as the accent color. White and black also look great outdoors — white cushions and black frames, for example  — and they open up the possibility of nearly any accent color.

Comfort

While the look of the set is important, the ultimate test is whether it’s comfy to sit on. Test it out if you can, and make sure it’s the right depth for the average height of your family. Check to see if you like how much or how little you sink into the cushion. Look for special extras, such as cushions with anti-slip hooks or a coffee table with built-in storage and a tabletop that offers easy access to items.

Storage

If space is at a premium on your deck or patio, look for pieces of furniture that also double as storage. A storage bench will do double duty and look great at the same time. Using storage bench seating also means that you won’t have to carry your cushions and pillows indoors when it’s time to put them away for the season.

How much you can expect to spend on a patio furniture set

A budget option can cost around $500, while a larger set with more pieces will average around $1,500. You can always start with a smaller set and add on as needed over time. 

Patio furniture set FAQ

How can I help my patio furniture set last longer?

A. Simple preventive measures and care can extend the life of outdoor furniture. Perhaps the best thing you can do to make your patio furniture last is to take great care of its cushions. Spray them with a waterproofing spray at the start of each season. If the covers slip off, wash them regularly to keep mold and mildew from forming. If you live in an area where temperatures drop below freezing in the winter, bring the cushions indoors or store them in waterproof containers. Even if you safely store the cushions indoors, consider purchasing furniture covers for the chairs, loveseat and table to keep the elements from damaging them. Rinse them off well, and make sure they’re dry before putting the covers on them. 

Do I need a set with a dining table or a coffee table?

A. The answer will depend on your preferred lifestyle. If you only have room for one, and you like eating meals outdoors, a dining set is the obvious choice. If you like to have long, leisurely wine nights with friends, you’ll want comfy seating you can sink into for hours, so a set with a coffee table is best. 

What’s the best patio furniture set to buy?

Top patio furniture set

Erie Lake Brown Five-Piece Wicker Outdoor Patio Conversation Seating Sofa Set

Erie Lake Brown Five-Piece Wicker Outdoor Patio Conversation Seating Sofa Set

What you need to know: This highly-rated five-piece set provides all the basics for a cozy evening outside.  

What you’ll love: The cushions come in a variety of colors, so choose your favorite for a highly customized look. The weather-resistant polyethylene rattan is hand-woven around a metal frame that resists rust, so this set is built to last.

What you should consider: The footstools can double as a coffee table in a pinch. However, if you want to serve cocktails and have ample surface area for snacks, you’ll want to buy a table separately. 

Where to buy: Sold by Home Depot

Top patio furniture set for the money

Wade Logan Diamondville Wicker/Rattan Four-Person Seating Group with Cushions

Wade Logan Diamondville Wicker/Rattan Four-Person Seating Group with Cushions

What you need to know: Featuring clean lines, this five-piece set comfortably seats four. 

What you’ll love: The cushions are eye-catching and beautiful. The boxy design gives this set a modern vibe.

What you should consider: The loveseat is actually two end pieces, so you can configure this set in a variety of ways. However, if you’re looking for a solid loveseat, don’t be surprised by this one that can come apart.

Where to buy: Sold by Wayfair

Worth checking out

Westin Furniture Seven-Piece Outdoor Patio Rattan Wicker Sectional Modular Seating Set with Cushions

Westin Furniture Seven-Piece Outdoor Patio Rattan Wicker Sectional Modular Seating Set with Cushions

What you need to know: If you want room to stretch out, this larger sectional seats more guests or doubles as a bed for a pleasant afternoon of lounging outside on your own. 

What you’ll love: Depending on the occasion, you can configure it as one big sectional or break it up into two corner sofas and four armless ones around the included coffee table for a party in the round. This set also includes two pillows.

What you should consider: Considering the size of this modular set, you may want to buy a few more pillows, especially if you plan to break up the set into several smaller seats.

Where to buy: Sold by Macy’s

 

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Maria Andreu writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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