Posted on: July 24, 2019 Posted by: Comments: 0

Last Updated on September 8, 2022

With school out and the sizzling heat among us, there is no better time to renovate your outdoor space than summer.

This season, we’re looking at lush, lively, and fresh spaces that are perfect for entertaining. Here are our top picks for renovations that are sure to make your backyard the best on the block.

#1. Make space for a deck or patio

If you’re planning on hosting a lot of barbecues this summer, it’s important to have a designated place for people to gather. Decks and patios make for great outdoor spaces to host friends and family. No matter if they’re wood or concrete, these spots allow guests to hang out, relax freely, and enjoy the summer sun.

Plus, these additions increase the resale value of your home when you’re getting ready to sell.  Did you know that decks and patios are on the cheaper side of home renovations, but provide some of the largest ROIs–especially when compared to adding on rooms or renovating an attic?

On average, decks provide a 70% ROI–that’s a pretty large return on investment! Just be sure to invest in the right materials and design for your house to avoid decreasing the value of your home.

This two level patio in Mooresville, NC allows you to have the whole neighborhood over for a block party.

#2. Add an outdoor kitchen

Perfect for grilling up burgers, hotdogs, or even shrimp kebabs, outdoor kitchens allow party hosts to serve up a delicious meal for their guests. Whether you prefer brick built in ovens or stainless steel stand alone grills, an outdoor kitchen will tie your outdoor space together beautifully. Just don’t forget a grill cover to protect your kitchen during stormy weather!

The stunning, built in stainless steel grill in this Waxhaw, NC home makes us want to fire up the grill and invite the neighbors over for a barbecue right now.

And this kitchen and bar in Fort Mill, SC makes you feel like you’re on a tropical vacation any day of the week.

#3. Two words: string lights

At night when the sun goes down it’s important to have lighting so you and your guests can still enjoy the outdoors. Invest in a stylish, durable, and festive set of string lights to instantly create an intimate gathering space. Not only will these lights create the perfect ambiance, but your backyard will look pinterest-worthy in minutes.

These string lights are the epitome of dreamy and create a great backyard space for hanging out with family and friends.

#4. Landscape your yard

Adding flowers and other plants will take your backyard from 0-100 real quickly. They will make your space lush and lively while looking like a picture from a Home and Gardens magazine. Annuals, perennials, bushes, or leafy palms will add a burst of color and life into you backyard. Add some dark mulch or fresh dirt to make your garden really pop.

#5. Don’t neglect the necessity of comfy seating 

This might seem like a no-brainer to some, but if you’re hosting friends and family at your place this summer, it’s crucial to have seating. Add some pieces that not only tie your backyard together aesthetically, but are also durable and can withstand mother nature’s worst.

Add an outdoor rug with patterns or multi-colors to help create the best backyard landscape. And perfect for afternoon naps, hammocks are fun and relaxing seating styles great for all ages.

The chairs and couch in the backyard of this Raleigh, NC home look so plush and comfy we wish we could leave work asap to go lounge by the pool.

#6. Add a fire pit

Even in the summer heat, a fire pit brings people together and creates a cozy ambiance for backyard parties. Hanging around a campfire is the perfect place for sharing stories, making memories, and enjoying those long summer nights. And as an added bonus, the smoke will help keep those pesky mosquitoes away.

#7. Create a space for shade

Adding some shade to your yard will help your guests cool off from the blazing summer sun. Both pergolas or patio covers will work for this renovation. Patio covers are great to protect yourself from the elements–i.e. harsh wind, rain, or bright sunlight. Pergolas are another excellent option because you can grow plants from their posts while also earning major style points.

This home in Raleigh, NC opted for a large pergola and added vines to grow and wrap around the wooden posts.

#8. Add a bar cart

To stay cool, calm, and collected while hosting guests, add a bar cart for refreshments to your space. Choose a cart with wheels so you can bring it inside when the weather gets cooler. This classy and chic addition will be sure to impress all of your guests no matter what their drink of choice is.

#9. Bring in some water

Adding a pool, waterfall, or pond to your backyard will easily make your space feel like an oasis. The sound and look of a stone brook is the epitome of serene and makes you feel like you’re on a vacation getaway every day of the week. Pools are great fun for kids and relaxing for adults, while waterfalls and ponds add beauty to any garden.

The pool at this Oak Ridge, NC home is super blue and just waiting for someone to jump in and cool off from the summer heat.

 #10. Lawn games

No summer barbecue is complete without cornhole, giant jenga, or other lawn games to have some fun. They provide friendly competition and fun for all ages. So pop open a La Croix, pull out the lawn games, and get ready to have the best summer yet in your newly renovated backyard getaway.

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