7 outdoor living trends that are hot right now + 4 ways to get your money’s worth
Realtor Amy Lawson has lost track of how many times past clients have called to say “we’re about to do x, y or z in our yard: will we get the money we put in? of our investment? »We interviewed her to find out the main trends she sees in outdoor living and how make sure your investment pays off.
Trend with outdoor life
If COVID has taught us anything, it’s the value of having an outdoor space where you can work, play and relax, alone or with those you love.
We spoke to real estate agent Amy Lawson about the latest trends in outdoor living that she’s seeing these days. Here is what she told us.
1. Edible landscapes
Edible landscapes give people a hobby as well as something to cook. Plus, whether you’re growing in containers, flower boxes, or raised beds, they’re attractive.
2. Social front yards
In the old days, we would go to our backyards in search of privacy. Now more and more people are treating their front yard like an old-fashioned porch.
All you need to get started is a bistro table and chairs or a bench. Of course, you can also go elaborate and turn your entire front yard into an outdoor living room, if you feel like it.
3. Board Rings
Continuing the trend of social front yards, a board ring looks fabulous with the right house. Think of the fireplace meeting the gas line, with seats surrounding it in the shape of a ring.
The good news: It’s inexpensive to run a gas line, and if you’re selling to a buyer who doesn’t like it, it’s easy to remove the gas line and fill it with soil.
4. Versatile indoor-outdoor furniture
As people spend more time outdoors, they spend more money on their outdoor furniture. So why not buy furniture that you can also use indoors?
5. Swimming pools
Designed for the swim swimmer, swim pools are a great way to exercise at home, even on the hottest days.
Instead of taking up your entire backyard, a lap pool leaves room for green space and enough amenities to make it a truly eye-catching architectural feature of your space.
Premium: a lap pool requires minimal maintenance and provides an element of reflection and texture to your garden.
6. Field offices
More The FMH has owners looking for privacy and protection. Whether it’s an umbrella or a structure that shields your laptop screen, people come up with fun and whimsical ways to take the office outside.
Since we live in Alabama, it goes without saying that oversized outdoor fans are a welcome addition to any outdoor office space.
7. Grass for putting green or cornhole
Whether you and your SO want to practice putting or the family wants to play corn hole, turf is a fun, easy option that’s easy to remove when you’re fed up.
Professional advice to make sure your investment pays off
Here are Lawson’s top tips for making sure your outdoor living space pays off in the long run.
1. First get approval from the Home Owners’ Association (HOA).
Of course, this tip only applies if you live in an area with an HOA.
While you can get away with making unapproved changes for yourself, not being in compliance could cost you a potential sale at the time of the sale.
2. Hire experts to help you develop a plan.
“People are experts for a reason. Mistakes can cost money. Sometimes it’s best to get it right the first time.
Amy Lawson, RealtySouth
- Hire a landscape architect to draw a plan. Hire someone who bills by the hour to come to your property. They will sketch out what should go where depending on where the light enters: play spaces, hardscape, etc. Typical cost: $ 300 to $ 350. “It’s worth it because you know where things are going. You can hire a contractor and that will save you money in the long run, ”Lawson says.
- Hire someone to help you decide which plants to buy. Lawson asks sellers to do this when they are preparing a house for the market. They stand in the yard and tell you exactly which plants to buy, where to put them, which ones can tolerate what kind of sun and the size of the plant. Cost: about $ 100.
3. Do the math before investing in a swimming pool.
“I’m not kidding when I say I get questions about swimming pools every week. The question is always “can I take my money out of the pool?” And my answer is always no.
Some buyers don’t want to maintain a swimming pool. Some belong to a club with a swimming pool.
In terms of investment, the most you’ll typically get out of a pool, when the time comes right, is 50% of what you put in it, according to Lawson.
If you do decide to dive in and go for a pool, make sure you keep enough land for a good play area.
You should also take into account the current value of your home before deciding how much to spend on a swimming pool and landscaping. The investment must be balanced.
4. Install landscaped lighting to get the most out of your outdoor living space.
Outdoor lighting is easy to install and will help you get the most out of your outdoor spaces, especially in the hot summer months.
Make sure your walkways and stones are lighted. The good news: lighting is not very expensive, and will pay off safely.