Author:  Jayde Ferguson

Aussies thrive on backyard entertaining.  Summer days call for it and winter days crave it – so having an outdoor space you can utilise all year round is an investment every homeowner should make.  Backyard renovations are one of the ultimate ways to boost your home’s value, but there’s more to it than just plants and greenery.  The garden and all its surrounding elements are just some of the things that can help transform your space.  Whether you’re looking for a DIY renovation project to tackle or on a mission to increase your return of investment come resale time, giving your outdoor space some TLC is the first step to crafting the oasis of your dreams.  Here are some essential backyard makeover tips to give you the best space for entertaining and living in.

Use Recycled Paving

If you want a backyard that oozes character, recycled paving is a great way to add texture and visual interest, whilst offering a practical and cost-effective solution.  Take advantage of leftover pavers, bricks and other materials which can be utilised for paving.  These can be sourced online from sites like gumtree or check with your local landscapers and builders to see if they have any leftovers available for purchase.

Good conditioned pavers can be found from other renovation projects from people that are simply updating their existing paving too.  Asking around can save you a ton of money and breathe new life into old materials.  Paving is one of the best ways to help define ‘zones’ in the backyard – and using recycled materials where possible will cut down on costs and add a unique appeal to the area.  If you want to get really creative, you can create visual impact through broken pavers to craft mosaic patters.  Combining different materials together will also add to the appeal and makes for a fun DIY project anyone can tackle.

Invest in a Pergola that Suits Your Home and Space

Make your backyard a true extension of the home by investing in a pergola space.  Inside and outside living and entertaining have merged into the one, so it’s not uncommon to have the luxury additions from inside in your outside space too.  To transform the yard into an additional living room and a multi-functional space, a well-constructed pergola is one of the best investments a homeowner can make.  It gives us creatures of comfort all the essentials; like shade and shelter and provides an area to entertain and relax in.

Depending on your budget, prices can vary significantly to suit your home’s individual needs.  Different roofing, material and colour options can help to complement your home’s existing architecture perfectly and effectively combine the inside space with the outdoor world.  A pergola space gives homeowners the opportunity to add an outdoor kitchen and BBQ area too!

Incorporate Native Plants

All gardens need greenery and native plants are a great way to add colour to the space, without too much maintenance involved.  Introducing plants, trees and shrubs that are native to your location mean they thrive a lot easier.  Anything that’s forced to live outside its natural habitat naturally comes with needing a lot of TLC.  And that’s valuable time and money you can be spending elsewhere in the garden.  Not to mention, they look fantastic.

Adding native plants are a huge benefit for properties that are prone to extreme weather.  Investing in succulents and other hardy greenery will make tending to them easier – even for the brown thumb gardener!  Creating natural habitats through the use of native plants in your outdoor space will invite wildlife into the area too, and this is big giveaway your garden is healthy and inviting.  Head to your local nursery to find out what plants are best suited for your location.

Add Vertical Dimension

If space is lacking, you can still add that much-needed greenery through vertical gardens.  This is a fantastic idea for super small areas without taking up any floor space.  Vertical gardens can be easily made with old pallets and pots or with flower troughs and hanging units to fit the plants in. Hanging baskets are also ideal for small spaces to brighten up with greenery and flowers.


Vertical dimension can also be added in other areas of the outdoor room to create visual depth.  If the space has a lot of lawn, add height by positioning boulders.  They can arranged individually or in clusters, depending on the look you’re wanting to create.  Leave space around the large rocks for colourful plants or ground covering shrubs.  Boulders and large rocks can be found at landscaping supply stores and are a cost-effective way to change the dynamics of the space.

Create a Privacy Screen

Outdoor spaces feel more like a personal oasis when there’s privacy introduced.  No one likes the feeling of peering neighbours and we all want a sense of distance away from others!  Fencing plays an important role in backyard design and value boosting renovations for the home, but privacy screens can create a big impact for the patio and pergola space.

Add a slatted screen to the open side of the pergola to add an extra layer of privacy to the area.  You can also implement outdoor curtains if you prefer the look and feel.  Both offer privacy and shade, but curtains have the advantage of being open if you desire.

Turning your backyard into a sanctuary retreat is easy when you get those creative juices flowing.  Cultivate a theme, focus on renovation projects that will add value to your home and let the garden and outdoor area flow.  Extend the inside out by decorating in similar ways as you would inside.  At any budget, adding some fun and creative materials can truly transform a space.

Author Bio

This article is written by Jayde Ferguson, who writes for Great Aussie Patios – Perth’s leading patio builders with a unique design and cost-effective solution for any outdoor space. You can catch her on Google+.