Buying Guide

Best Patio Furniture for Your Yard

Things To Consider
Black patio furniture with white cushions on a small patio.

Size of your space 

Think about how much room you have for patio furniture and accessories. Do you have a smaller balcony that can only hold a chat or bistro set? Does your backyard have space for entertaining? 

Style 

With so many choices, it can be difficult to find the patio furniture that matches your home style and lifestyle. Our Choose Your Own Color program lets you customize a look of your very own by choosing the patio collection, color and fabric. 

Use 

Consider how often you'll use your space. Are you planning to host a lot of outdoor parties on the patio? Do you need versatile patio furniture like stackable chairs and tables for extra guests or are you looking for a larger, comfortable set for relaxing? 

Types of Furniture
A table and chairs on a patio.

From full furniture sets to patio chairs, there are many types of furniture available for use on your patio, so the best time to select outdoor furniture is well before you need it. Sketch a layout of your outdoor living space on grid paper and experiment with styles and placements so you can get the best combination to serve your needs.

Chairs
Wicker patio chair beside a swimming pool.

The most common types of outdoor chairs are sling chairs, cushion chairs and caned or woven chairs. 

Sling Chairs

Constructed with a back and seat of soft material looped around a frame, sling chairs have the advantage of being lightweight and easy to move around and they are usually the least expensive type of patio chair.

Cushion Chairs 

Cushion chairs have more substantial bases and are sold with back and seat cushions and occasionally, decorative cushion in coordinating colors.

Woven Chairs

Woven chairs such as wicker or cane are traditionally made of natural plant fibers, but now can also be made of plastic or paper-wrapped wire. Woven chairs are noted for their beauty and are often a choice for outdoor furnishings in the South. All-weather wicker is usually preferred for patio furniture that will be constantly exposed to the elements.

Outdoor Sofas
Outdoor sofa and two cushion-topped ottomans on a patio.

If the size of your family or your social group requires more seating, rather than add more chairs, consider outdoor sofas or large format seating. A loveseat for two or a three- or four-seat sofa takes up more physical space, but it can reduce the number of pieces needed to accommodate everyone comfortably. A larger outdoor seating option also serves as a visual anchor for your setup the same way it does indoors. 

Accessory Seating
Metal and wicker bench on patio.

Non-traditional seating options such as benches or swings can provide fun variety to your outdoor decor.

Bench Seating 

Usually available in wood or metal, bench seating offers years of durability.

Glider or Swings 

Gliders or swings add homey charm to your decor. A porch or patio swing will need a spot where it can be hung either from a sturdy beam or its own frame. A glider is a better choice for small spaces and open-air patios.

Chaise Lounge

Comfortable and versatile, a long chaise lounge adds a dramatic look to your outdoor set.

Garden Stools

Before selecting a garden stool to serve as seating, be sure to check the weight rating. Some are not meant to be used as seats, only as decor or occasional tables.

Tables
Metal and glass patio table.

Your patio tables should harmonize with your seating, but also be functional. Think about how you’ll use the outdoor space most often and design around it. 

  • Provide at least one side table for every two chairs.
  • Large format seating may look better with an outdoor coffee table in the mix. 
  • Bar-height tables make excellent buffet spaces, allowing guests at outdoor gatherings to easily help themselves.
Patio Sets
Outdoor sofa and two chairs in a large patio space.

A patio set will come in all kinds of styles and sizes, from a simple bistro set with two chairs and a coordinating table, all the way up to a dining set with seating for six or eight. 

  • The advantage of buying in sets is that you can easily outfit an entire patio for one price and all the furniture will be perfectly matched. However, you are limited to a single style. If you tend toward a more eclectic style, purchasing a set as your sole outdoor decor may be less satisfying. 
  • Use accessories to introduce additional color and texture into a patio furniture set and personalize it.
Materials

One of the most important choices you will make when buying new patio furniture is the type of material you need. Think about durability, use and how it will fit with your lifestyle. 
Aluminum 

  • Lightweight
  • Doesn't rust or fade
  • Low maintenance
  • Available in a variety of colors
  • Powder-coat finish provides durability
  • Use car wax or mineral oil to protect surface
  • Wash with soapy water and rinse

Plastic 

  • Lightweight
  • Often stackable 
  • May be made of recycled materials
  • Apply cleaners that prevent mildew
  • Rinse with water

PVC (poly-vinyl chloride)

  • Lightweight
  • Low maintenance
  • Available in many colors
  • Wash with soapy water and rinse

Steel 

  • Sturdy and durable
  • Requires little to no assembly
  • Comfortable
  • Apply protective finish to prevent rust
  • Wash with mild soap and rinse

Wicker and Rattan 

  • Lightweight and flexible
  • Durable and comfortable
  • Available in a variety of colors
  • Dust occasionally
  • Use all-weather fabrics for cushions and pillows, unless furniture is protected
  • Wash with mild detergent and rinse

Wood

  • Types available include teak, cedar, cypress, pine and more
  • Teak provides an ideal combination of beauty and durability
  • Solid and sturdy
  • Use paint with UV filters to prevent fading
  • May require a preservative
  • Wash with soapy water and rinse
  • Use brightener and oil to maintain original appearance

Wrought Iron 

  • Sturdy and durable
  • May be mounted on wheels
  • Available in a wide range of designs
  • Use paint to touch up cracks
  • Apply rust protection
  • Wash with mild soap and rinse
Fabric Types
Matching metal chairs with colorful cushions and pillows on a patio.

Tip: Consider UV- and weather-resistant fabric for cushions to provide your patio furniture with built-in sun protection and increased durability.

   

Acrylic, Cotton Blend, Olefin and Others

  • See manufacturer's label for warranty details
  • Weather resistant
  • Typically most inexpensive option

CushionGuard

  • 3-year limited warranty
  • Water repellent
  • Fade resistant
  • Stain resistant
  • Exclusive to The Home Depot      

Sunbrella

  • 5-year limited warranty
  • Water resistant
  • Fade resistant
  • Clean with mild soap and warm water
  • Highest upfront investment
Patio Accessories
Lanterns and other accessories on a patio.

Tip: Constant exposure to the sun's rays can cause patio furniture to fade. If your patio or deck has direct exposure to the sun, consider adding a patio umbrella or retractable awning to protect seating areas from the heat and harsh light. 


Decor

Accessories like lanterns, rugs and pillows add color and style while helping you create an outdoor space that is truly your own. 

Motorized Awning 

If you don't want to hassle with manually deploying your awning, look for one that you can retract with the push of a button.

Accordion Tables 

Accordion tables expand and collapse as needed to create extra space or save room. They make great additions if you want to have enough table space for occasional parties but prefer to have more room to move around the rest of the time.

Carts

Carts are mounted on wheels and provide convenient storage and extra surface space in one stylish package.

Wheels/Casters

Some items come mounted on wheels or casters for easier mobility. This is especially desirable in items constructed of heavier materials such as wrought iron or steel.

Collapsible/Modular Design

Some pieces of outdoor furniture are designed to collapse or come apart for easier storage and/or transport.