The 8 Best Backyard Upgrades To Make


Are you ready to spruce up your outdoor living space?

A backyard makeover doesn’t have to be costly to be luxurious. Sometimes, the right night lighting, a handy water feature, a cozy patio, and DIY magic are all you need to breathe new life into your yard.

Exterior upgrades enhance the look of your home and offer recreational benefits. However, not every upgrade produces a return on investment, and some home improvements can make your property less attractive to potential buyers.

If you’re looking to do some backyard upgrades that will appeal to the buyer and add value to your home, keep reading. We’ve gathered eight ideas on how you can spruce up your backyard without breaking the bank. Check them out now!

1. Install an Outdoor Hot Tub

Imagine that at the end of a long, tiresome day, you can kick back and unwind in the hot, jet-infused water while enjoying the beauty of your well-decorated backyard.

The ultimate luxury, a backyard hot tub provides a comfortable and relaxing environment that can be accessed throughout the year. Rain or shine, you can head outside and enjoy all the healing properties of your spa.

A complete backyard hot tub installation can offer a perfect place to host friends and family. A hot tub can provide more than just relaxation to your guests, but also entertainment.

When installed in your deck or patio area, guests can enjoy activities like playing games, listening to music, enjoying appetizers, or just catching up, all from the inside of the hot tub.

Plus, having a hot tub in your backyard is a great way to raise your home’s value, simply because hot tubs can be used all year round. Not to mention that a well-installed hot tub can give your backyard a stylish and modern look.

2. Build an All Season Pool

An all season pool, also known as a swim spa, is a small version of the conventional pool that is created to be used all year round.

Designed for swimming and other water-related activities, a swim spa can keep you active, even in the coldest weather.

What makes an all season pool unique, however, is that it can also be used as a hot tub—combining the best that a full-sized pool and a traditional spa have to offer.

Plus, outdoor pools naturally bring people together.

Beyond swimming, pools provide a lounge area and are a decorative backdrop. When installed in your backyard, they add that stylish and modern look to your home.

You may have heard that backyard pools don’t add any value to your home, and that’s true in many cases. But failure to install a backyard swimming pool in a high-value home can make it difficult to sell the property at the price you want. Houselogic estimates that under the right circumstances, a pool can boost your home’s value by 7%.

3. Add a Pergola

A pergola is a simple structure that can transform your backyard and turn it into an inviting outdoor space that you’ll love.

Adding a pergola is a fantastic way to spruce up your backyard and make it more appealing. One advantage of installing a pergola is that it adds purpose to your landscape.

In other words, a pergola carves out a space in your backyard that can be used for dining, lounging, entertainment, and other activities. This structure can come in handy, especially if there is no deck or patio connected to your home.

And if privacy is one of your biggest concerns, a pergola can be of great help.

When placed strategically in a yard, a pergola can be used to block or cover an unsightly object such as your neighbor’s shed or the road from your view.

Most importantly, a pergola can increase your home’s value. According to home improvement experts, having attractive landscaping can increase your home’s resale value by up to 20%.

And the best part: you can combine it with other structures.

A pergola can be added to gazebos and other structures in your backyard to create an attractive outdoor living space. And if you don’t know how to build one, you can purchase a pergola-like shade structure from a home improvement store.

4. Install Outdoor Lighting

Once summer rolls around, you’ll likely spend most of your time outside—yes, even when the sun sets. So, why not invest in outdoor lighting?

Outdoor lights can make a big difference to any backyard, large or small. Sconces and pendants are a great way to brighten up your outdoor space, but if you want to give your backyard a serene, beautiful glow, string lights are the way to go.

Adding landscaping lighting and string lights is a great way to highlight your yard’s best features and make your home a safe place. Outdoor lighting can add the right ambiance to your yard, making it usable at night.

Plus, outdoor lighting can increase your home’s value.

You can expect to pay up to $5,000 for your outdoor lighting, but according to NAR and NARP, you could see a 50% return on investment on average.

5. Add a Water Feature

Need some makeover ideas for a small yard? Invest in a fountain or waterfall.

These backyard items are great for adding a water feature to your backyard without pinching your pocket hard or taking up too much space.

A landscaping water feature adds visual effect and charm to your home. And if you’re hoping to get a good resale value for your property, adding a fountain, waterfall, pond, or even a small brook is a good investment.

Plus, a water feature is easy to install and instantly makes your yard feel more relaxing. A fountain, for instance, will mask the nearby noise pollution while releasing a continuous flow of negative ions. In other words, a water feature can lead to improved air quality.

6. Build an Outdoor Fireplace Area

If you like using your backyard in the evening, why not maximize its use by building a fire pit or a fireplace area.

An outdoor fireplace can make a real difference in how you use your backyard. Outdoor fireplaces create a gathering point for everyone at home when the weather is cold. This can create the following opportunities for personal enjoyment and professional advantage.

  • Increased usage of the backyard space in colder seasons
  • Ability to host outdoor entertainment in cooler weather
  • Longer use of outdoor seating for restaurants

Although a fireplace is extremely functional, it’s also a design element if you care about the aesthetic appeal of your home. It transforms your home and will even encourage you to add more to it for it to become a haven. You can add a jacuzzi, BBQ station, or even a garden-seated area. This makes it extremely appealing if you ever decide to sell.

7. Install a Backyard Patio or Deck

With roughly $1.4 billion worth of grills and barbecues sold nationwide each year, you’d be remiss not to have a designated spot to dine and entertain guests in your backyard.

Summer usually means barbecues, crab feasts, and a lot of time with your family and friends. And installing a patio or deck is one of the most effective ways to make full use of your backyard and enjoy hosting parties in your outdoor living space.

A patio can also extend your living room area. You can add a couch to make your patio a great place for guests and even kids to hang out.

Plus, patios are relatively affordable to install.

According to NAR and NARP, an 18’ x 20’ concrete paver ratio costs around $7,000, and you could see, on average, 69% return on your investment. Remodeling Magazine’s 2019 Cost vs. Value report calculated a higher ROI of 76% after spending $13,000 on a 16 x 20-foot deck.

8. Spruce Up Your Landscaping

Most homeowners think landscaping is all about levelling the ground. However, there’s more to it. Landscaping encompasses many activities, from modifying the visible elements of a property to the inclusion of plants, gardening, paving, and more.

Properly done, landscaping can help improve a property’s curb appeal as well as its value. According to Vancouver Green Capital, landscaping can increase your home’s value by 10%.

With well-designed landscaping, you can transform any patch of green into a relaxing escape to entertain your family and friends. Plus, research has shown that spending at least 2 hours per week in nature can enhance a person’s well-being.

Ready to spruce up your landscaping? Here are five budget-friendly landscaping ideas to try out.

  • Repurpose old tires
  • Go vertical with your gardening
  • Buy or build low-cost seating
  • Use affordable lighting
  • Build an outdoor fire pit
  • Opt for natural perennial ground covers
  • Plant useful plants, e.g., vegetables and herbs, in your yard

Transform Your Space with Lifestyle Outdoor

You don’t need to spend a fortune to transform your backyard.

By approaching things with a do-it-yourself mindset, you can turn your backyard into anything you want. These eight backyard upgrades are just some of the ways you can improve your yard.

Did you find the information in this article helpful? Find more useful backyard upgrade ideas in our blog and online resource center.

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