As summer approaches, many home sellers and agents are looking to the great outdoors to catch a buyer’s eye. Offering an outdoor sanctuary adds value to a home, whether it’s a beautiful garden, alfresco dining space, screened-in sun room or a resort worthy swimming pool. These outdoor living and entertaining spaces have made their way to the top homebuyers’ wish lists.
American homeowners increasingly are drawn to adding outdoor rooms for entertaining and recreation, according to the 2013 Residential Landscape Architecture Trends survey. In fact, the category of outdoor living spaces, defined as kitchens and entertainment spaces, received a 94.5 percent rating as somewhat or very popular.
“Creating an outdoor oasis that extends beyond your typical terrace or deck can be an important point of differentiation and may sway a buyer’s decision,” said Fran Broude, president Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. Here are some ideas on how to make the most of your space and create a backyard that you’ll never want to leave.
- Go alfresco: There’s no better way to enjoy a meal than under the stars, especially when hosting guests. Go the extra mile by setting up a full service bar and built-in cook’s station in the backyard.
- See the light: Continue entertaining into the evening by installing outdoor lighting. For example, Tiki torches add a tropical vibe, while low voltage lighting provides a mellow and peaceful feeling.
- Make it last: Further helping to blur lines between outdoor and indoor spaces is the rise of screened porches, heat lamps and outdoor fireplaces, making them livable nearly year-round.
- Decorative water elements: By including a waterfall, swimming pool or hot tub you will feel like you’re at the spa every day. If you want to be really unique, build a fountain or a fish pond that will give your yard a sense of tranquility.
Check out these homes currently on the market that have amazing outdoor space:
This eclectic home in the West Town neighborhood has is situated on three combined city lots with a gigantic private yard that is unheard of for city living! The landscaping and outdoor dining table looks perfect for outdoor entertaining. It is for sale by agent Joseph Gasbarra for $2,750,000.
The paved stone pathway in the backyard of this charming Evanston home is perfect for entertaining. The gorgeous stone grill with counter top space is the perfect addition. The home is listed by agent Allyn Rawling for $850,000.
A pool house, saltwater pool, terrace with outdoor fireplace and tennis court spread upon 2.6 acres of stunning grounds make this Lake Forest home an outdoor haven. It is listed by Ann Lyon, for $5,375,000.
This newly added stone and cedar pavilion has loads of seating and a huge fireplace. It makes this Schaumburg home the perfect setting for entertaining friends and family. The home is listed by agent Brian Bertoia for $899,900.