Some outdoor living space improvements will be more worth your while than others. Even if you’re not ready to sell your home any time soon, adding some upgrades to your outdoor living space is an excellent investment of time and money, especially when it’s an upgrade you can enjoy with the family.

Even in a seller’s market, curb appeal is critical for drawing the attention of potential buyers. When people visit a house, they often assess its appeal within minutes. If they’re looking online? Even more important. Those pictures of unique features will get them to call a real estate agent and set up a showing immediately.

But which ones are worth the time, energy, and funds, especially if you’re considering selling in the next few years? And which improvements don’t give you the bang for the buck? Read on for our top picks on both ends of the spectrum.

Add a Patio

Tellurian fence

To put it simply, patios are the forgotten outdoor living space. For far too long, a simple concrete slab was considered a patio. And people lost interest in the idea of a backyard patio. But now, a well-designed and installed patio is a no-brainer backyard improvement. You can create more outdoor living and entertaining space with outdoor tile or pavers. Once you’ve invested in a bit of patio furniture, rugs, lighting, and some additional design elements to add flare, a patio makes for an enjoyable space that also increases the value of your home.

Install A Fire Pit

The beauty of an outdoor fire pit is that it allows you to be comfortable in your backyard when the weather turns cool or downright cold. These days, people want to enjoy every square inch of their homes as often as possible—outdoor spaces included. A fire pit can be very alluring if you live in a colder area. Though, even in warmer ones, s’mores have a universal appeal. Realm, a renovation planning service, estimates that you’ll recoup roughly 150% of your investment. So, say that stone fire pit set you back $4,000; it’ll add approximately $7,000 to your home’s value when you’re ready to put it on the market.

Privacy Fence

Nothing looks worse than a beautiful home with a rickety fence. Your fence serves as a safety feature of the house. Think of it as the moat and walls surrounding your castle. Improving the fencing surrounding your home will make your home appear to be more solidified and sturdy. The poet David Frost once said, ‘Good fences make good neighbors.’

Outdoor Kitchen

small pergola covering cooking area

You know how a kitchen update helps sell a home? So does a gorgeous outdoor kitchen. A survey of 1,250 real estate agents found that nearly half recommended making this upgrade to attract potential buyers. It’s a surprise-and-delight moment that has people instantly envisioning themselves entertaining… tossing dough and cooking up tasty homemade pizzas in your new pizza oven! To get the most significant ROI, you will want to ensure the outdoor kitchen space is genuinely functional and can be used for at least three out of four seasons. The outdoor kitchen should have plenty of counter space for prepping food and party supplies. We recommend installing a nearby sink for washing hands and electrical connections to hang a television and sound system.

Design a Deck

backyard deck with fireplace and pergola

Installing a deck can cost anywhere from $2k to $10k depending on the features you choose to include. A new patio deck will encourage you to enjoy your outdoor space while making your home more attractive and marketable. Expect to recoup about 66 percent of the costs of building a wood deck. As material costs have steadily climbed since 2018, the value has declined, but overall, a deck is still a highly sought-after home feature.

But before you build a deck (or have one built), there are a few steps you need to take first. You must check with your local ordinances to see what’s required by the local municipality’s code to build a deck.

Add a Pergola or Shade Structure

backyard deck with hot tub and seating area

A pergola is an excellent option if you want to add an incredible feature to your backyard. An outdoor pergola with furniture and a rug enhances an ordinary outdoor living space. Creating a sense of place within your backyard for entertaining will increase your home’s value and is an amenity many people are looking for as they continue to work from home and entertain friends and family. Perhaps you plant a winding vine along one of the posts for a touch of old-world charm? Another fantastic reason a pergola is an excellent investment is that it can be customized to look and function however you want and need. You can choose the dimensions that work best for your patio and what type of wood and grain you wish to show off with your pergola.


As for upgrades we wouldn’t recommend, especially if you plan to sell in the coming years; two biggies come to mind.

Swapping Grass for Artificial Turf

We get it, never having to mow or water the lawn sounds nice. It sounds so nice that turf installs climbed by 275% in 2021. But if you’re going to sell, you’d be better off investing in landscaping services.

Adding a Pool

Backyard BBQs poolside, kids running, laughing, and splashing, you on your floaty drifting aimlessly as the sun sets… What’s not to like about that scenario? How about the fact that a pool dominates your backyard, making all other parts a second thought. Pools are a huge safety concern if you have young ones of your own or grandchildren. Then you have to think about the upkeep and maintenance. A pool will cost you around $1,500/year in maintenance, cleanings, chlorine, and repairs.


If any of these home improvement ideas have sparked your interest, we’d love to work with you to create the outdoor living space of your dreams. Call or fill out our contact form and one of our knowledgeable staff will get back to you ASAP!