As the days get longer and the weather warms up, there’s nothing quite as satisfying as spending time enjoying your outdoor space. Whether you’re looking to add new features that can enhance your home’s exterior or upgrade existing elements of your outdoor living area, now is a great time to start prepping and cultivating your outdoor space. From coming up with an overall design plan to selecting the best materials for landscaping projects, this guide will provide everything you need to create a beautiful oasis in no time.

Evaluating the Site

Save Time and Money with a Site Plan

Before breaking ground, planting a single flower, or erecting a new pergola, it’s important to have a proper site plan conducted. For projects big and small, site planning saves time and money by ensuring the land is suitable for improvements. You may consider your backyard design plans humble, but you still want to avoid the expensive surprises that can occur when you haven’t evaluated your yard. Site planning can determine:

  • Location of gas lines
  • Location of sprinkler lines
  • Drainage needs of the site
  • Existing fixtures that need to be moved or considered
  • Regulatory compliance 
  • Estimated costs
  • And more

Anderson Engineering recommends site planning so everyone involved in the project is on the same page, and all necessary approvals are granted before commencing. It ensures you know what’s permitted in your space, and helps you avoid costly fines, damage, or missteps in the building process.

Updating your Home’s Exterior 

Painting, Installing New Doors and Windows, New Siding

Your home’s exterior is just as important as the interior. It’s the first thing guests see and the last impression they take with them. Updating your home’s exterior can be a great way to make your outdoor space an inviting area to spend warm summer days. 

A fresh coat of paint or new vinyl siding can give your home an entirely new look and feel, creating the perfect backdrop for the yard improvements you’ll embark on this summer. Pair that with stunning new exterior doors or garage doors and your home will be the envy of the neighborhood. 

New windows can not only beautify your home but give you the freedom to let the outdoors in. Outfitting windows with new screens means you can take advantage of the cool breeze without the bugs invading your indoor space, making it worth the investment.

Designate and Design the Areas You Want to Create 

Creating Areas to Gather and Celebrate

Have you thought about the spaces you want to designate for gathering and enjoying the outdoors? Many homeowners default to the backyard, neglecting areas such as the porch, front yard, and even the garage.

Designing your patio and deciding on the landscaping and hardscaping elements can be an exciting endeavor. Whether you prefer a cozy nook surrounded by greenery or a spacious area for entertaining, there are endless possibilities to explore.

Porch Hangs

Consider building out your existing porch to transform it into a space you can repose at the end of the day and watch the neighborhood happenings. Install plants or coverings to provide shade, make space for seating, and put down an outdoor rug to define the porch as an extension of your indoor living space.

Front Yard Fun

Is your front yard all about looking good without serving much of a purpose? Is it a time-suck that prevents you from being able to enjoy kicking back after work? Consider xeriscaping to reduce the amount of maintenance your front yard needs. Haul 4 U has expert recommendations for creating a front yard that reflects your style while reducing water consumption and giving you more time for fun.

Garage Lounging

Have you thought about your garage as a usable space for warm-weather lounging? There’s something nostalgic about opening up the garage door and sitting in the shade to enjoy a cold drink at the end of a long summer day. Whether you convert your garage into a legitimate inhabitable space or just pull the car out for the evening, organizing your garage is essential for turning it into a multi-use space. Advanced Door has tips for keeping your garage organized for better access to lawn equipment and to make it a more functional space.

Complement Your Green Space 

Add Pathways, Decking, or a Firepit

Transform your backyard into a relaxing oasis with the addition of flagstone pathways or wooden decks, a fire pit, or a gazebo. Complementing your green space with hardscaping elements not only enhances the beauty of your property but also creates comfortable outdoor “rooms” for outdoor activities. Imagine strolling along a scenic path lined with beautiful flagstones, or gathering with friends on a charming wooden deck surrounded by the serenity of nature. A cozy gazebo can also be the perfect spot to enjoy a good book or a cup of coffee on a lazy afternoon. With a little creativity and the right design, you can transform your green space into a true haven that you’ll love spending time in.

Invest in comfortable outdoor furniture 

Go For All-Weather Materials

When it comes to enjoying the great outdoors, comfortable outdoor furniture is essential. Whether you want to relax by the pool, entertain guests on the patio, or simply enjoy your morning coffee in the fresh air, investing in quality outdoor furniture can make all the difference. Protect your outdoor furniture with sunshades, curtains, or a new patio covering that blocks sunlight.

Some of the best materials for outdoor furniture include:

  • Aluminum
  • Plastic
  • Rattan
  • Resin Wicker
  • Stainless Steel
  • Teak

Incorporate Lighting Features to Enhance Your Outdoor Space 

Opt for Solar-Powered or Hardwired Lighting

As the summer nights grow longer, there’s no better time to enhance your outdoor living space so you can make the most of the warm summer evenings. One way to do this is to incorporate lighting features that will illuminate your yard. Whether you opt for soft, ambient lighting to create a cozy atmosphere or bold, bright lights to highlight your favorite plants and features, well-placed lighting can transform your garden into a magical space that you’ll love spending time in after dark. From solar-powered lights to trendy Edison bulb strands, there are countless lighting options to choose from, so all you need to do is find the ones that will make your outdoor space shine.

Preparing and cultivating an outdoor space for warm weather enjoyment is a significant, but rewarding process. With careful planning and research, you can create a relaxing oasis in your own backyard. Making upgrades to the house exterior – painting, adding new shutters, and completing landscaping tasks – can provide the basis for your design ideas. Overall, deciding how to cultivate your outdoor space is a fun journey allowing you to get creative and discover more ways to make it an area you love spending time in during nice weather.

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