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Homeowners know that outdoor spaces can add a great deal of livable area to your home. These spaces are great for entertaining as well as for your personal individual enjoyment. However, unlike your home, outdoor spaces are less inviting at night unless you have installed some sort of outdoor residential lighting. Styles and options of outdoor residential lighting abound, so homeowners can choose to mix and match features to meet their needs.

Why Do You Need Outdoor Residential Lighting?

The first question an outdoor lighting designer will ask is what you want to accomplish with your lighting design. A few of the most common reasons that people want lighting integrated into their landscapes are safety, ambiance, and highlighting of specific home features.


Outdoor residential lighting provides added safety to your landscape in two ways.

Tripping Danger

In the summer, we have light until well after 8:00, but in the cold winter months, the skies can be completely dark before everyone gets home from work. The darkness can obscure trip hazards, including icy patches or uneven ground. Of course you want to be sure that your family is safe from trip hazards, but if you have company, an accident could even lead to financial liability if someone is injured on your property. To avoid any type of injury from tripping due to darkened walkways, path lighting is often installed.

Path lighting can come in various forms, such as garden lights, downlights, stair lights, and flush, or in-ground lights. Path lights are often used strictly to illuminate walking paths to avoid tripping or having people walk on plants adjacent to the walkways. For this purpose, the best options shine down on the ground and avoid producing upward glare.

Garden style lights have a cover that prevents light from shining up into visitors’ eyes. Downlights are angled down for the same purpose. Stair lights can shine onto or out from the stairs, and in-ground lighting uses soft illumination since it does point upward.


The second type of danger that outdoor residential lighting can help prevent is unwanted visitors. Thieves or prowlers of any kind will be less likely to target a home that is well lit. For this purpose, path lighting aids in general illumination, but uplighting of the home’s façade or foundation, or even rows of trees and shrubs, will eliminate shadowy hiding places. If you prefer something more subtle, security lighting that is motion sensitive can be a very effective deterrent as well.


When you make an investment in creating an outdoor living space, you want to be able to enjoy the space all year. Outdoor residential lighting can make the outdoors even more festive at night than in the daytime. You can have multiple levels of lighting to meet different outdoor activities. For example, if you are entertaining your children’s friends who will be using the pool and spa, you may choose in- ground lighting as well as pillar lights, cap lights on walls, lamp posts or pavilion lighting—for water safety and a bright, fun atmosphere.

If you are entertaining a few friends with quiet conversation or dancing, or if you are just enjoying conversation under the stars with your spouse, you may want more subtle lighting or a fire pit. An outdoor lighting designer can give you all sorts of personalized options to suit your taste.


Homeowners who have invested time and money into a beautiful landscape or special architectural home features often want those elements to be visible at night as well as during the day. In fact, in the Main Line area, many home landscapes are even more beautiful and dramatic at night when the right outdoor residential lighting is in place. Uplighting can be used for more than just adding security. Placed correctly, uplighting can add elegance and grandness to a home’s façade. Intricately planted and trimmed trees, shrubs and other aspects of your softscape can be shown to best advantage with a combination of uplighting and path lights or lamp post style lighting.

The Burkholder Advantage: Our Design Experts Will Customize Your Outdoor Residential Lighting

What is the advantage of working with Burkholder to design your outdoor residential lighting setup? Our designers will meet with you to determine what your lighting needs are, what your budget is, and what types of personal preferences you may have with regard to styles, colors, etc. Then we create a design for you that incorporates all of the individual elements you need.

These plans might include a new gas-run built-in fire pit or fire table to augment your cozy seating area. Gazebo or pavilion lighting could be used to illuminate a small dance area. You might like stair lighting to enable safe walking for your family and your visitors as well as show off the details – like your stairs leading to an upper level deck, or down to a featured water fountain. In ground lighting around the pool, in addition to uplighting in the surrounding greenery, will give the impression of a tropical locale. Lamp post lights or wall sconce lights can add your own personal style in bronze, copper or other colors. Many other options exist and your personal designer will share them with you.

Once your design is decided, our team will install everything for you, from handling the electrical work to ordering all of the materials. You avoid having to coordinate with different vendors and contractors by having Burkholder take care of all the details. If you decide that your outdoor living space could use an upgrade in furniture, we can help you coordinate styles and colors and order exactly what you need from our top quality outdoor furniture manufacturers. When our team of designers and installation specialists leave your home, you will be able to simply relax and enjoy your newly created backyard oasis, 365 days, and nights, per year.

Contact Burkholder today to learn about all of your options for outdoor residential lighting and start planning ways to enhance your home’s exterior spaces.