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8 Backyard Improvements That Add Value to Any Home


While many homeowners put an emphasis on interior home design, what about backyard renovations?

Depending on the size of the backyard, designers and homeowners alike can come up with creative and inviting projects that can help transform any space into a personalized outdoor oasis.

But what are the backyard improvements that add value?

It’s easy to lose track of your budget. It’s also easy to not take into account the real value of a project before you get started. This is especially the case for projects that are more personal in nature — like additions to a backyard.

So, if you’re looking at making some improvements to a backyard space, what do you need to know? How much value can you really get out of a backyard project, and what kind of improvements should you consider if return on investment (ROI) is top of mind?

We’ll walk you through what you need to know; just read on!

How Much Value Does a Great Backyard Really Add?

The big hairy question around backyard renovations is how much value they can bring to a property.

Unfortunately, this is not a simple question to answer. In reality, it’s going to depend on several factors, including:

  • Project type
  • Material costs
  • Curb appeal
  • Perceived value
  • Custom features

As a general rule, the more personalized a project, the less you’ll get back. This is because not everyone has the personal tastes of the homeowner. Projects that are highly customized with unique styling and theming rarely bring the same value to the buyer as they would the original homeowner.

It’s also about the type of project.

Here, simpler is always better. The lower the stakes in the remodeling project, the better return you should expect. This might surprise you, but the most valuable renovations are usually minor upgrades.

For instance, while you might think a big project like adding a backyard guest house will add the most value, it’s all about recouped costs. This project costs around $500 per square foot. But, the amount of value that a backyard guest house adds to a property will not be the total cost of the project but rather a percentage based on market factors.

So, if you’re looking for the most bang for your buck, don’t go extravagant and lavish; go simple and low maintenance.

A well-manicured yard that doesn’t require much upkeep is your best bet on backyard improvements that add value.By some metrics, a well-maintained yard can bump your home value by 10%. That’s a huge amount of value for a simple improvement.

8 Backyard Improvements That Make a Huge Impact

From outdoor kitchens to upgrading your landscape design, here are eight easy ideas to help improve a backyard space.

1. Outdoor Kitchen

One way to add some utility to a backyard is by adding an outdoor kitchen.

As you might imagine, you’ll find many ways to approach a project like this. You can go for luxury and try to replicate an indoor kitchen with everything from a sink to an outdoor refrigerator. 

You can also go simple and include a basic prep area near a grill or smoker.

outdoor kitchen rendered with Cedreo

2. Patio

A patio space is the perfect way to bring some extra comfort to a home’s backyard.

With simple hardscaping additions, some furniture and other design elements, you can easily create a welcoming backyard patio that is sure to wow.

You can even add additional features like a porch screen, lighting or outdoor electronics to add another layer of comfort and luxury.

Pation mediterranean house

3. Swimming Pool

Nothing beats a swimming pool on a hot summer day.

Unfortunately, this kind of project can get costly quickly. While a pool might seem like a good long-term investment, there’s just no guarantee the project will recoup costs or add value to a property.

If a pool is a must, consider cost-effective vinyl-lined or smaller pool styles.

4. Fire Pit

A fire pit is an easy way to add a little bit of fun to a backyard space.

Fire pits can either use natural wood or propane as a cleaner burning and easily manageable alternative. Adding hardscaping elements around your fire pit is another great way to separate the space and make it feel more inviting and secluded from the rest of the backyard.

Deck with fire pit at night

5. Wooden Deck

A deck is on most homeowners’ minds. Not only can they be visually stunning, but they add a great platform that allows the homeowner to spend some time outside without being in the muck and grime.

But, to make this a fiscally responsible project, it’s all about materials.

While real wood is very beautiful, it can get expensive — and wear down fast.

Consider cheaper and more durable PVC decking.

backyard with wooden deck

6. Privacy Fence

While spending time outside is a great way to relieve stress, the last thing a homeowner wants is the neighbors getting a front row view.

Adding a privacy fence can add another layer of security and peace of mind. But don’t think it will detract from the beauty of the space. Not only can you use wood fencing materials, but savvy landscapers can employ the use of climbing plants to keep things private and natural.

backyard with privacy fences designed with Cedreo

7. Pergola or Extended Roof

If a backyard is getting too much sun, it can limit the amount of time a homeowner spends in the space. That’s why many projects aren’t complete without adequate shade.

While you can accomplish a lot with umbrellas, oftentimes you need a more permanent solution. 

To keep the sun at bay, consider extending the roof area or adding a pergola for additional comfort.

Patio with pergola designed with Cedreo

8. Upgraded Landscape Design

As we’ve touched on before, upgrading your landscape design can be one of the most valuable backyard home improvements. Many contractors and designers leverage the power of landscaping software to create efficient designs that don’t overwhelm a budget. By planning everything out, users can create 2D and 3D plans that take into account plant choice, hardscaping, furniture and other design element costs.

Use Backyard Design Software to Start Planning Today!

A backyard can be so much more than a drab outdoor space. From pools to fire pits, a few simple additions can really transform the area.

Even if your project is on a budget, you can find many backyard Improvements that add value like simple landscaping additions or a wooden deck. 

But, to make the most out of your designs, consider planning software like Cedreo.

These all-in-one platforms help everyone from professional contractors to DIYers create streamlined 2D and 3D plans in under a few hours. With Cedreo’s easy-to-use tools, anyone can create stunning backyard designs.

Make the most out of your backyard designs with Cedreo!

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