July 6, 2022

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Whenever the weather warms, it’s only natural to want to move outside and get some fresh air. From an entertaining perspective, this means more backyard gatherings. The question is, do you have an ideal space for it to happen?

How to Turn Your Backyard into an Entertainment Space

While the average square footage of single-family American homes appears to have finally plateaued (and declined), there’s one thing that more homeowners and buyers are prioritizing: outdoor living space. In fact, it’s one of the most appealing parts of a home in this day and age.

Transforming your own backyard into an entertainment space can ensure you get maximum enjoyment (and future resale value) out of your home.

Not sure where to start? Here are several helpful suggestions:

Clean It Up

The first step is to clean up your backyard. If you haven’t previously been using it for entertaining, then there’s a pretty good chance that landscaping needs some love. To get started, we recommend doing the following:

  • Remove any trash, yard debris, outdoor toys, or other items that you aren’t currently using.
  • Pull weeds, trim shrubs, and rake leaves. (Not only does this beautify the backyard, but it also makes your yard less hospitable to mosquitoes, bugs, snakes, and other unwanted critters.)
  • Limb any trees that are too low and/or are overcrowding your backyard space.
  • Once weeded, apply mulch or straw to beds. This helps create a nice visual contrast between your lawn and surrounding areas.
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You’ll be amazed by how much more willing you are to spend time in your backyard when it’s clean. You’ll also see more potential for upgrades and improvements.

Create Gathering Places

If you want your backyard to be a space for entertaining, you need to create gathering spaces for people to spend time. Typically, a good gathering place includes seating and/or entertainment.

One option is to install a fire pit with a seating arrangement around it. (This makes for great entertainment during the spring and fall months.) Another option is to create a space for outdoor games and activities.

Something simple like a dartboard or cornhole board works. Or you could get as advanced as building your own putting green. Whatever you do, the idea is to create a couple of zones where people can congregate and enjoy one another’s company.

Bring the Indoors Outdoors

Ironically enough, one of the best ways to bring an outdoor living space to life is by bringing the indoors outdoors. By incorporating indoor elements in your outdoor living areas, you make them more comfortable and enjoyable for all. Here are several ideas:

  • Build an outdoor kitchen that allows you to cook and grill outside. Outdoor kitchen kits make this easy and cost-effective. You can integrate a custom kitchen into almost any space (big or small) without overpaying.
  • Upgrade your deck into a screened porch. This allows you to get more creative with the design of your outdoor space. Feel free to integrate furniture, rugs, and even lamps or string lighting.
  • For colder months, propane heaters can help you get maximum enjoyment out of your backyard for a few extra weeks each year. If you live in a particularly hot region, cold misting fans are good for bringing down the temperature and making your space more friendly for entertaining.
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Create Some Privacy

Privacy is one of the defining characteristics of a good backyard. Unfortunately, not all backyards are super private. In many of today’s newer neighborhoods, houses are much closer together and there are minimal trees separating lots. This means there are direct sightlines from neighboring properties into your backyard.

If you want to make your backyard an even better space for entertaining, look for ways to create additional privacy. Options include privacy fences, shrubs, fast-growing evergreen trees, trellises, vertical gardens, etc.  (Another benefit of screening in an existing deck is that it gives you more privacy.)

Adding it All Up

If you have a backyard, make sure you’re using this space to the fullest! All it takes is a small investment of time and money and you can transform your backyard into a place that’s perfect for entertaining family and friends. Use this article as a source of inspiration as you begin thinking about specific design ideas that fit your style and budget.