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How to Create a Backyard Oasis

Make the most of your yard by adding these features…

Your backyard should be the place where you can relax, unwind and spend quality time with your family and friends. But what if your yard isn’t the oasis you’ve imagined? We’re often asked by our clients to design their outdoor space so it’s more functional and celebrates their lifestyle and values.

There are many reasons your outdoors might need updating. Perhaps you’ve just moved in, and the landscape reflects the tastes of the previous owners. Or your family’s needs have changed over time. Or you’ve been inspired by a design you’ve seen on Instagram and want something similar in your yard.

Whatever your motivation, there are plenty of ways to turn underused spaces into great features that get you excited to spend time outside again while increasing the overall value of your property. To help you see the possibilities, we asked our team which landscape features provide the greatest ROI. Their answers are below.

Extend your living area with a patio

A patio serves as an extension of your indoor living area, beckoning you and your family outdoors while still having the comforts and amenities of an indoor space. Your patio can be customized to fit your specific needs and designed to complement the overall look and feel of your property.

Your patio can be elaborate or simple — but there are a few factors that can increase your ROI.

  • Plan with purpose in mind to ensure your patio design aligns with your lifestyle and enhances the functionality of your outdoor living area.

  • Opt for durable and high-quality materials such as natural stone or concrete pavers. High-quality materials enhance the aesthetic appeal of your patio and will retain their value over time.

  • Consider the placement of the patio based on a number of factors, including the size of your patio, whether you need access to utilities and how you want to use the space.

  • Don’t cut corners. In order to prevent shifting and settling, a patio should start with a solid base layer that’s 8-12 inches thick. Anything thinner than that could compromise the integrity of your patio over time.

Provide comfort with shade structures

Even sun worshipers need respite from the sultry afternoon sun. Timber pergolas, covered cabanas and Muskoka rooms create outdoor living areas that can be used rain or shine, while arbours and gazebos add charm and function to outdoor settings.

If ROI is important, avoid the cheaper sunshades typically found at big box stores. Saving a few bucks in the short term can be costly — especially when your investment blows into the neighbour’s yard.

Having a shade structure that’s professionally built, with proper posts and foundation using quality materials and solid construction, will last for decades and retain its value over time — substantially increasing your ROI.

Replace the barbecue with an outdoor kitchen

If you’re into backyard entertaining and love to dine outside, replacing your barbecue with an outdoor kitchen can be a real game-changer.

Outdoor kitchens can be fully customized too, with a variety of amenities to choose from, including pizza ovens, refrigerators, cabinets, wine fridges, grills and more.

With careful planning, your outdoor kitchen can be a luxurious and sophisticated outdoor living space, giving you years of carefree cooking while making it easier to relax and socialize while you’re preparing and serving a meal.

Expand your gardens

To give your backyard instant, fresh appeal, consider expanding your gardens. By introducing colour, texture and variety through the plants and flowers you choose, your yard becomes a more inviting and vibrant outdoor space.

Plus, if you choose the right plants for your Ontario garden, you can create a beautiful and functional outdoor space that supports pollinators and other wildlife, contributing to biodiversity and ecological balance.

Pro tip: If you have a bare spot in your landscape that you don’t know what to do with, consider planting some hardy perennials or shrubs. They will grow to fill the space, turning what used to be an eyesore into a beautiful space.

Invest in professional landscape lighting

Landscape lighting invites you to spend more time outdoors, setting the mood and creating cozy, welcoming nooks, enhancing special features and ensuring steps and pathways are safe.

Whether you want to create an intimate space, brighten a dark corner for security reasons or give your home a dramatic look from the curb, the lighting experts at Landmark can help you design an outdoor lighting system that will enhance your home’s best features.

Bring the soothing sound of water to your yard

Water features help transform your landscape into a calm, spa-like retreat. From ponds to reflective pools to decorative fountains and waterfalls, the choices are limitless.

You can enjoy the soothing sound of water by including a fountain, bubbling rock, natural stone waterfalls and more…  our designers will help you plan the water feature that is perfect for you.

Transform your landscape

Unless the motivation to upgrade your property is to sell it, the features you add should make the most of your space and bring you joy.

And because it’s our mission to connect you with the beauty of the outdoors, we created “Your Landscape Transformation Guide” to help those looking to update their yards. The tips in this guide will help you transform your landscape into an inspiring and enriching place to share with family and friends.

Download your free copy for more tips and inspiration… or reach out to schedule a consultation with our team.