The Backyard Makeover Of Your Dreams Doesn’t Have To Be Your Wallet’s Worst Nightmare


As a homeowner, you deserve a space where you can go to escape the hustle and bustle of your everyday. A space where you, family and friends can relax and enjoy each other’s company. A place to sit and soak-in the beautiful weather we’re blessed with here in North Carolina.

But if you find yourself cringing at the mere thought of your home’s outdoor living space, it can make “escaping”, “relaxing” and “enjoying” seem near impossible.

That’s when you know it’s time for a backyard makeover! With our suggestions, you can create the backyard of your dreams without breaking the bank. And do keep in mind that if you’re looking to sell your home sometime soon, an updated outdoor living space will prove to be a worthwhile investment you’re sure to see return on.

1. Patio or Deck

Before beginning any sort of outdoor living space overhaul, you need a solid foundation to build on. Even the most creative cosmetic changes can’t hide a dirty, grimy surface. So look down. How is your patio or deck (or both!) looking?

From time to time, every patio/ deck surface will require some TLC. After all, these outdoor surfaces are heavily exposed to weathering, heavy foot-traffic, pests, children, pets, and so on. Decide what your space needs–will a refresh suffice or is a complete overhaul necessary? Then go from there.

Most times, a thorough cleaning and a coat or two of stain or paint is enough to get your beloved deck and/or patio back to its old glory. The best part? It’s DIYable!

2. Furniture

Moving on to the main feature–your patio furniture. Arguably one of the most important aspects of an outdoor living space.

Great patio furniture brings comfort and function to your outdoor living space. Do it right, and your patio space can easily become a second family room during the warm weather months.

When selecting outdoor furniture, consider what purpose you need it to serve. Would you like it to serve as an elegant outdoor dining area? A peaceful reading nook? A hoppin’ social hang out spot for your and your crew? Use this as a guide to determine what type of furniture is necessary.

Consider furniture that is easy to care for, creates opportunities for storage, adds color, and don’t be afraid to invest in higher quality (this is one thing you’ll want to dig into your wallet for, as you get what you pay for when it comes to patio furniture). Spruce your furniture set up with an “all weather” rug or decorative pillows.


Don’t let your patio fun end once the sun goes down. But even more, don’t let awkward, poorly planned outdoor lighting kill the vibe.

Outdoor lighting is an easy and inexpensive way to make a big impact on the look and feel of your outdoor living area. Choose from a variety of ambient lighting options like overhead string lights, lanterns, candles and torches. Task lighting features like pathway and step lights can enhance the space as well. You can even opt for accent lighting, like landscaping spotlights.  

Not all outdoor lighting is created equally and creating just the right type of “glow” requires some planning on your part. Calculate just how much lighting is needed in the space, and what type, to ensure your space is warm and welcoming.

4. Landscaping

We know, sometimes keeping up with yard maintenance is easier said than done. But there’s nothing quite as visually appealing or satisfying as a fresh cut lawn, trimmed shrubs, and clean, freshly mulched flower beds.

Spending a day or two a month getting down and dirty in your backyard can go a long way when it comes to achieving the backyard oasis you’re looking for. If you have it in your budget to do more than just a cleanup, use flowers, and various other landscape elements to bring some actual life to your outdoor living space.

Don’t have time, tools, or hands to DIY? Maybe your neighbor can recommend a landscaping service! Or better yet, lend you what you need!  

5. Bar or Kitchen

If you live a food-forward lifestyle, an outdoor kitchen or bar area might be the perfect addition to your new outdoor living space.

It’s becoming increasingly trendy for homeowners in the South East to bring their entire cooking and dining experience outdoors. Therefore, an outdoor kitchen is an investment you’re almost guaranteed to break even on, if not see increased ROI on.  

Build your outdoor kitchen around your grill and check out other outdoor cooking appliances available. From a small refrigerator for stocking drinks to a deep stainless steel sink, pizza oven, smoker, and more–there are options to create the outdoor culinary experience you’re looking for.

6. Pergola or Overhang

Pergola, pronounced pur-guh-luh, is an architectural structure that was originally used by ancient Egyptians to escape the sun while they walked from one building to the next.

Today, pergolas are a highly sought after backyard feature that provides not only shade and privacy, but class, elegance, and design. Pergolas can be used to strategically separate your outdoor living space from the rest of your backyard.

Since pergolas lack a solid roof and walls, you may also consider a different type of shelter like an overhang or screened in area. This will come down to your specific budget and needs.

Boost Your Home’s Resale Value From The Outside

Not only will updating the look and feel of your outdoor living space improve your overall quality of life at home, but it’s sure to give your home’s value a little boost too!

Ample living space, in general, is a huge selling point, but when you’re able to extend livable space outside–home buyers will go crazy.  Especially when you consider that many homebuyers relocate to the Carolinas for nicer weather.

To see exactly how valuable a backyard remodel project is, check out the National Association of Realtors’ Outdoor Features 2018 Remodeling Impact Report.

If you’d like to find ways to get the best band for your buck indoors, check out our previous blog Home Renovations That Have The Best Resale Value in Raleigh.

Keep us, your friends at Spencer Properties, in mind when it comes time to sell your home. Our team of Realtors® is extremely knowledgeable when it comes to knowing which home renovation projects are worth your time and effort.