Transform Your Small Backyard Into Your Family’s Hangout Spot
If you have a small backyard, you’re probably not maximizing the space. In all likelihood, you write it off as unusable space. But the reality is that even the smallest yard can serve as a functional space for your family to hang out and relax. You just have to be strategic!
Small Backyards: There’s More Than Meets the Eye
Everyone wants to talk about big backyards. If you ask a random sample of 100 homebuyers what they’re looking for in a backyard, almost all of them will use words like big or spacious. But bigger isn’t always better. Small backyards still have plenty to offer. This includes a long list of benefits and perks such as:
- Less yard work time. People often underestimate how much time it takes to keep up with the landscaping needs of a large property. Between mowing the lawn and trimming shrubs to pulling weeds and raking leaves, there’s so much that has to be done on a regular basis to keep a yard looking presentable. If you want it to look “great,” that requires even more work. A small yard means less time landscaping and more time doing the things you love.
- Lower landscaping costs. Landscaping isn’t just a time commitment. It’s a financial commitment too. With a smaller yard, you can save hundreds and possibly even thousands of dollars per year. This is money you can spend on other home improvements or purchases that you’re interested in.
- Bigger impact. If you have a small yard, you can make it look incredible even with a strict budget. A $500 refresh on a small backyard will have a much more noticeable impact than if you were to spend that same amount on a one-acre backyard.
- Smaller carbon footprint. Small backyards require less watering, electricity, and energy-intensive projects. This means a smaller carbon footprint and less of an impact on the local -environment.
At the end of the day, everyone has their own unique idea of what a backyard should be like. Some people prefer big, spacious yards with lots of room to run around and explore. However, bigger doesn’t always mean better. In many cases, smaller spaces produce oversized rewards. If you have a small backyard, it’s time to embrace it.
5 Ways to Transform Your Small Backyard
Want to get the most out of your small backyard? Here are several ideas and techniques you can put into action in order to create a space that you and your family will love for many years to come.
1. Bring the Indoors Outside
The best way to turn a tiny backyard into a functional space is by bringing the indoors outside. In other words, incorporate interior-like elements into the backyard to make it cozy, comfortable, and beautiful.
One way to do this is by creating comfortable seating arrangements. Do away with the cold, uncomfortable iron patio chairs and invest in outdoor sectionals and seating where' you can relax. Put down an outdoor rug and consider mounting a TV in an appropriate spot.
Another option is to build an outdoor kitchen so you can use the space for entertaining. The easiest approach is to build a modular outdoor kitchen, which allows you to choose individual components and piece together your own custom kitchen to fit your specific dimensions and space.
2. Make it Interactive
Backyards are for relaxation, but they’re also for enjoyment. And sometimes enjoying looks like playing games or doing activities. If you can find a way to make your backyard more interactive, that’s a huge plus.
You don’t have room to go crazy with activities, but pick one or two options and find a way to integrate them. This could be a dedicated place for playing cornhole, a dartboard installation against the side of the house, or even a small putting green.
3. Create Privacy
One of the big pain points of small backyards is that they tend to lack privacy. Adjacent properties are right up against your own home, which limits your ability to relax and enjoy the space unencumbered. Thankfully, there are things you can do.
Creating privacy may require some creativity and thoughtful planning. Options include installing a privacy fence, planting privacy shrubs, using vertical gardens or latticework to interrupt open sightlines, installing fountains to block noise, building a canopy or roof over a patio area, etc.
You might not be able to make your backyard 100 percent private, but you can at least reclaim some tranquility.
4. Infuse Personality
This is your backyard – own it! While your front yard might be a little more conservative in order to appease the neighbors and maintain acceptable curb appeal, feel free to spice things up in the backyard. This might include using bright colors, unique art/sculptures, or any other elements that fit your eye.
5. Make it Easy to Care For
At the end of the day, it’s your backyard and you can do with it what you please. However, do keep in mind that one of the primary benefits of having a small space is that it’s easy to manage. If you overdesign the area, you could actually eliminate this advantage and create more work for you and your family.
As you design your small space, think strategically about the materials you use. For example, you could try artificial grass instead of real turf so that you don’t have to worry about watering, mowing, or weeding.
Make the Most Out of Your Small Backyard
Just because you have a small backyard, doesn’t mean you’re limited. In fact, you actually get to enjoy a number of distinct benefits that those with larger backyards don’t have. Maximize these advantages by implementing some of the ideas and techniques highlighted above.
Don’t feel like you have to make your backyard look like someone else’s. This is your unique space and should be a reflection of your personality and interests. Apply the aforementioned tips in ways that align with your family’s tastes and your home’s overall design.