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Building the ultimate backyard

minute read

    We’ve all been to that one place. The friend's house with the big backyard, the beach vacation with the comfiest lounge chairs or that botanical garden with the freshly cut grass. They have a backyard that makes you feel at ease and brings a slice of heaven to the outdoors. Getting outside, out of our heads and into the fresh air is an experience that goes unmatched.

    Turning your backyard into your own personal oasis can be done, and it doesn’t have to take much work. There are some big home improvements you can make, but we also have some tips and suggestions that come at a low cost with high value. Backyard improvements are like lifestyle improvements, here’s why:

    What to consider when revamping your backyard

    A home improvement that can go a long way with backyard improvements is landscaping. Getting rid of those old weeds, planting some fresh flowers or new trees, or pruning existing trees and shrubs can breathe new life into your backyard space. Another idea to consider is creating a designated seating and eating area. Popular seating areas include dining tables, lounge chairs and fire pits.

    The cherry on top is a good lighting system. This can mean in-ground lighting, along with aesthetics like string lights and outdoor lamps. If you want to elevate your backyard experience even more, you can do something big like add a pool, a hot tub or even an outdoor cabana area. The opportunities are endless, even if you need some financial assistance.

    Design ideas to transform your backyard


    There are many things you can do to improve the landscaping in your backyard. Some are effortless steps that you can do yourself and others you can hire a landscaper for. Things to consider before starting a landscaping project are budget, time and how dirty you’re willing to get!  The landscaping design you choose should be conducive to your lifestyle and should maximize the space you have. Here are some questions you can ask yourself before moving forward:

    • How much space do I have?
    • What areas should pull focus?
    • How much color do I want?
    • What type of water system do I need?
    • Do I want annual plants or perennial plants?
    • Am I looking for a big construction project, or something DIY?

    If you’re working with a smaller backyard, using landscaping levels is an effective way to make a small backyard look bigger. Terraced landscaping helps carve out spaces in your backyard and give the illusion that there is more room. You can create terraced landscaping by digging trenches and laying stones or other anchors for different layers of gardening. Shrubbery, flowers and even seating can go here.

    Another way to improve your backyard is by filling it with plants. If you’re working with a smaller space, you can grow your garden vertically. Mounting flowerpots on the fence or hanging baskets can be a subtle way of doing this, rather than taking up space on the ground if you’re looking to preserve some real estate.

    A wandering path can be another nice addition. This usually involves stones placed from one area to another, making for somewhat of a walking journey. You can put stones from one area of the backyard to another. For example, from a seated dining area to a bonfire.

    Install a deck or patio

    Installing a deck or patio in your backyard is  a great way to create more seating options and provides an area for you and your guests to relax. Not only does it break up the backyard and add texture, but it also gives you a place to put things that you wouldn’t want to sit on the grass. A deck can be used for lounge chairs, a seating area, a dining area and even an entertainment space with an outdoor projector if you want to go all out for an at home movie night.

    It usually takes about $25 per square foot and can be anywhere from $4k to $10k to build a deck. A patio is usually a little less and costs about $10 to $20 per square foot. This depends on where you live, what materials you want and who you find to build it.

    Eating outdoors

    Eating outside somehow always sets a fun and intimate party mood. If you have the time, space and funds to do so, a backyard kitchen and eating area can be an amazing investment. Installing a barbecue, a pizza oven, a fridge and even a place for liquor may be what you’re looking for to revamp your space. You can create a space for everyone to gather, cook, eat and sit all while being under the sun or stars.

    Backyard budget-friendly ideas

    Add seating

    An easy way to upgrade your backyard is by adding seating. This can be in the form of lounge chairs, a hammock, a swing or Adirondack chairs. You can find budget friendly alternatives for quality looking, comfortable chairs that give you a place to sit down and relax during the warm weather.

    Add heating

    It’s nice to get outside, even on a crisper night. This can be hard without a temperature-controlled space. You can get some heat by adding a bonfire, adding tiki torches, big candles or even an outdoor space heater.

    Add decor

    There are so many creative things you can do when it comes to decor in your backyard.

    Spray paint your furniture a tropical color, hang some string lights — you can even purchase a small outdoor bar cart. Imagine you are throwing a themed party but make it a fun, more permanent instillation.

    Start a garden

    Grow your own food and make the yard look pretty in the process. A garden is an awesome way to add some life to your backyard while also, very literally, seeing the fruits of your labor.

    How building your backyard could increase your home’s value

    Installing new features and updating elements of your backyard can help increase your home’s value. A functioning backyard with convenient appliances is something people are willing to pay for, especially now.

    Here are some of the most valuable things you can do:

    • Replace the back door
    • Put up new fencing
    • Add a deck
    • Install a patio
    • Add outdoor lighting
    • Upgrade your sprinkler system
    • Install a sound system
    • Make a designated eating area

    Replacing the back door and updating fencing is important for accessibility and aesthetics. Privacy is a priority for most homeowners, especially if they plan to spend a lot of time back there. A deck or patio is a sought-after feature because they are good for entertaining and provide a space safe for furniture and other items. Adding outdoor lighting is both a safety perk and a benefit for nighttime gatherings.

    An upgraded sprinkler system ensures the upkeep of expensive landscaping and will help maintain the health of your lawn and shrubbery. A sound system is another entertaining benefit and pairs great with a designated lounge area for you, your family and guests.

    Any of these upgrades may increase your home value and therefore have a chance to boost your home equity.

    There are many things you can do when building the ultimate backyard and it doesn’t have to be a huge undertaking. The smallest improvements might be exactly what you need. Whether it’s building an outdoor kitchen or hanging some twinkly lights on a tree, your personal oasis doesn’t have to be so far away.

    Have questions? Connect with a home lending expert today!

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