You may feel limited in what you can do with your small backyard, however, constraints often inspire creativity. One positive aspect of having a limited amount of space is that you can stretch your budget a little bit further and splurge on really interesting features. And frankly, some home buyers feel that a big backyard equals a big investment of time that they don’t have. Make your small backyard shine by creating usable, beautiful spaces that inspire people to dream about how your backyard oasis will help them enjoy their free time and the people they love more. Talk to one of our expert Realtors about how you can stage your small backyard space to get the highest return on your home sale.
Once you start to do some research, you will find that there are so many incredible small space ideas out there that it can be hard to focus. Without a cohesive vision, the danger lies in trying to tackle too many concepts, leading to a scattered mess. You can work out your layout and ideas in advance with the help of online tools and gardening apps. Here are a few to check out:
Better Homes and Garden’s free online Plan a Garden tool
Take a page from what is trending and create your own scaled-down version. Dwarf shrubs, colour blocking and a mini potted plant and succulent displays are all hot trends in 2017 and can be used as inspiration to make your small yard feel modern and chic.
Whether you create various levels throughout your whole garden or scale it down to a tiered garden box or stacked potted herbs, this type of vertical layering allows you to maximize your useable space by making each layer accessible and easy to maintain. It also draws attention upward, creating a more visually appealing garden in a smaller space.
Take a page from small indoor spaces and use multifunctional storage solutions that will keep your yard clutter free. Look for outdoor furniture that can double as storage, or create custom built-in storage below a raised patio or built-in deck seating. Mini DIY storage sheds are also becoming popular, as they can be both affordable and adorable.
Take advantage of your yard’s longest sight line to construct the illusion of a bigger backyard. A diagonal design also creates interest and balance in a small, rectangular space.
If you don’t have the space for a full-sized deck or patio, there are many options for creating small seating areas to fully enjoy the outdoors. Modular deck tiles are a quick and easy way to build a miniature patio space, or create a stone pathway to an ornate bistro set and enjoy your own nature-engulfed café.
Apply the concept of framing to draw focus towards your garden’s best features. By adding a pergola, trellis with climbing vines, or well-placed shrubbery or trees, you can frame and direct the view to the most beautiful spaces in your garden.
In a small yard, vertical space can be very useful. Keep in mind throughout your design process that horizontal space is at a premium, so if you are adding a feature like a fireplace or choosing furniture, tall and narrow may be a better choice. Vertical gardening is also becoming popular, taking advantage of walls and fences to create beautiful and functional herb, vegetable and perennial gardens that take up little to no space in your yard.
Just because you have a small space, it does not mean that you have to forego the luxuries of a larger backyard. Fireplaces, waterfalls or streams bring tranquillity and comfort to any sized yard and can be scaled to fit. Swimming pools are no longer reserved for large spaces either, as there are plenty of great small pool options available like endless pools, single lane lap pools, plunge pools and natural pools which offers more design flexibility than a traditional pool. Smaller pools are easier to maintain and less expensive to heat as well. Speak to one of our expert Realtors about return on investment for your home in your neighbourhood before putting shovels in the ground for a backyard upgrade.
If you are smart about your choices for an entertainment area, there is no reason that you can’t have your dream outdoor social space. Choose cozy and inviting but smaller scale or narrow furniture that fits the space and accessorize with small potted plants. Keep your furniture and grill around the perimeter so that traffic can flow easily, using smaller side tables instead of a large, space-eating patio table. Most importantly, keep your entertainment area bright with well-placed lighting.
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