One of the first steps in deciding on the perfect fire pit is to assess the size of your outdoor living space.

Make sure you have enough room to move around and seat your guests comfortably.

Then, consider the style and versatility of the fire pit to help you decide which type best fits into your outdoor living space.

Some fire pits can actually convert to a grill for cooking or an ice bucket to chill beverages.

Others can help maximize limited space, like an open or table-style fire pit that doubles as a center table for your guest at meal time.

These are all great added conveniences for homeowners looking to get the most out of a fire pit.

For smaller backyards or patios, consider a cauldron-style fire bowl. It’s shaped like a bowl, which is useful for radiating heat around your space. It also burns wood slowly so you can savor the experience longer.

Cauldrons are portable and feature vented tops that keep rain at bay and the open sides enable easy access for adding wood or roasting marshmallows.

You can set fire bowls directly on a ground-level stone or cement surface or elevate them via a metal stand or table.

Fire bowls are constructed from a variety of metals with beautiful finishes like bronze, cast iron and stainless steel. Many models include a heavy-mesh spark guard and steel grate.

If you are looking for a fire pit that is safe to use on your deck or area where vegetation is present, consider a chimenea. Chimeneas are more enclosed, with only a large opening in the front to pull air in and an opening at the top for smoke to escape.

Sparks are contained inside the walls of the chimenea, which are usually constructed of clay, or a ceramic or porcelain material.

If you have ample space available, consider a fire pit made out of paver stones and blocks. These fire pits are permanent structures that usually rest in the middle of a layer of paver stones that can double as a bar or table. You can sit directly on them should you ever need added warmth, but be careful not to get too close to the flames.