How to plan a backyard renovation project

The backyard area can have a number of uses that can provide a space for relaxation, entertaining, and for play. For both a functional and aesthetic backyard space, it is best to design and renovate the space as a whole. Renovating the entire space in a cohesive plan ensures that each feature blends well with one another

creating an appealing and welcoming backyard. Renovating and upgrading one part at a time with no long-term plan can result in a mix of features that may not work well together. Planning the backyard renovation project can start with deciding the functions of the space. The backyard can be a place for kids, a cozy retreat, an entertainment area, or a combination of different uses.

Once you have a clear goal on the overall function of the backyard area, you can select the key features of the space like the deck, patio, or even a pool. Starting with large focal features first enables you to plan around them to ensure effective use of space, and assists incorporating everything you find important into your backyard. Also creating a simple drawn layout during planning can make it easier to see the potential of the backyard. Once you have a general plan you can look at your potential backyard from different views. Similar to any room in a home, the appeal of the backyard could be an important factor in your planning process. Looking at the space from inside your home can help you visualize what the backyard could potentially look like from the kitchen window or the back bedroom window. With appropriate planning, the backyard can be a place you always want to visit.

Things to consider for your backyard reno project


Having a deck can add more use out of your backyard by adding an elevated hard surface that can be utilized for additional uses. With a deck you have the option of adding seating or tables on a surface that is even and prevents damaging the grass. The elevated surface also adds a better view of the overall space. Aesthetically, a wooden deck provides a great contrast to the natural landscape.


Similar to the deck but built directly on the ground, a patio can also provide a hard surface to place furniture and give a modern aesthetic to the backyard. Since the patio is not elevated it can provide more flexibility in design and landscaping to provide increased privacy.


Landscaping can be simple or complex which depends on the overall layout of the renovation plan. Choosing the right plants and hardscapes can make your backyard space stand out. Along with their sole appeal, landscaping can transform the overall allure of other physical features like a deck, fencing, or furniture.


Fencing adds privacy and a backdrop to your backyard space. Fencing can be painted to contrast the other backyard features. Vibrant landscaping or oak patios can further pop with a dark colored fence. Fencing can also separate your space from your neighbors, making your space more personal.


Clever backyard lighting can quickly transform your yard and increase its potential as an extended living space to enjoy the evening. The right lighting can spotlight focal points such as trees and planting while also assisting to zone different areas for relaxing, cooking, or gathering.

Irrigation system

Incorporating sprinklers in your backyard can ensure that your lawn and landscaping remains green and lush. A sprinkler system can operate on a schedule with the appropriate amount of water used. With an automated system watering your backyard can be easier to maintain and will not likely need your immediate attention.

Foundational work

Installing features like a patio, integrated lighting, and an irrigation system, requires foundational work that involves digging into the ground and knowledge on plumbing and electrical wiring. For these types of features a renovation plan can ensure that they are properly placed in the right spot and their installation remains permanent.

Outdoor accessories

Creating shade, adding a heat source, or a water element to your backyard space are a few outdoor accessories that can add appeal to the backyard renovation project. Along with appeal, a pergola or a built-in fireplace also adds additional function in your backyard space with a shaded area or a place to keep warm during the cool months.

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How much does it cost to renovate a backyard?

With the number of features that can be included in a backyard renovation project. From your plan establish a list of must-have elements, which might include a patio, plants, hardscaping and lights. The budget should also account for the need of any demolition, yard care, or fencing. Generally, to complete an overhaul of a backyard space, expect to spend $10000 or more. The project scale is a definitive factor that can affect the overall budget, large backyards that can support features like an outdoor kitchen or pool will drastically be different in price than a smaller backyard that can only support a grill and a patio.  Investing in your backyard space can be beneficial as it increases the living space of your home. This added benefit also contributes to the increased value of your home. The cost of your backyard renovation project can be easily recovered from the features that it adds and its value upon completion.

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