By Sommer Poquette
My family has been in our home for almost 11 years. For most of those years, we had a very ugly front door and no patio. It had no curb appeal—I can't say I ever really wanted guests to use my front door.
In the summertime, the space was wasted, and my family loves to be outside. We scratched our heads and checked our pocket book for extra change but never moved forward with making our entryway into a patio space that our family could use and enjoy—one that gave our home curb appeal and that we'd be proud to show off.
A few years ago, this changed. We took the plunge and decided to give our front door some curb appeal by creating an outdoor patio we'd be proud of.
We don't plan to ever sell our home, but if we did, the first impression our front porch makes could help encourage a potential buyer before they've ever walked inside. Our final makeover photo is pictured above and you can see I have lot of seating, fresh flowers, bright colors, décor and shade. Updating your entryway could also increase the value of your home significantly.
Whether you're in your forever home or you're thinking about selling, you'll want to consider some of these tips for giving your patio a spring makeover. These are tips I learned from my own patio makeover. Hopefully they'll help you turn that not-so-livable outdoor space into a place you want to enjoy and entertain in.
1. Work with what you have. Don't try to renovate your entire yard, turning one project into five projects. Get out a pencil and paper and begin drawing your ideal patio, using your current space. Take measurements and see what you have to work with and what you'll need.
2. Consider where you live and what type of patio surface will work best. What will your surface be? Will you need to tear up an existing patio and lay new concrete or a slab? Do you want to have a natural space with no poured concrete, but decking instead? We chose a concrete slab and wanted the space to be smooth because we'd have to shovel it during the winter.
3. Plan your shade. This is an important one because without shade you won't want to enjoy your patio during a hot summer day. Consider adding a pergola for shade and to give your patio a unique look. I'm in love with this 4th of July BBQ haven I saw on HomeTalk. True inspiration. Our budget limited us at the time so we decided to use a patio umbrella instead, which actually works great and gives our patio a pop of color from the road.
4. Consider landscaping and plants. All outdoor patios need plants and flowers, so you'll need to budget for this. I recommend planting annuals to save you money year after year and plants that will repel those pesky bugs.
5. Seating and outdoor furniture is a must. What will your budget allow for? You can shop garage sales, thrift stores and even the newspaper ads for used patio furniture that might just need replacement cushions. I highly recommend colorful cushions (remember to have a place to store them during bad weather). Blissfully Ever After has some great ideas for giving your patio a makeover on a budget, and I like how she chooses outdoor furniture that she doesn't have to worry about. A simple can of spray paint can give an old table a new look!
6. Start small. If you have grand ideas for your outdoor patio but your budget doesn't match your dream, add on as the years go by. Start with what you can afford and add fresh plants and flowers to give it a nice look. The year after, choose new furniture or add an outdoor grill. Everything doesn't have to happen at once.
7. Add décor. When you add décor to an existing or new patio, you're giving it a breath of fresh air. An outdoor painting, a new outdoor rug, a bright and flowery outdoor pillows or even some solar lights to light the walkway can bring the space to life. I find a lot of inspiration when I'm using Pinterest. I also don't have a large budget so I like to use things that I can upcycle, such as a wheelbarrow with flowers planted inside or an old wooden ladder to set a lantern and candles on. Décor doesn't have to break the bank. Drive by a garage sale or antique shop, and you might find your next patio planter.
Your patio is your space to enjoy—if you like spending time there, that is what matters most. If you're giving your patio a spring makeover to sell your home, keep it simple but appealing to the eye. And remember, you don't have to spend a fortune. A can of spray paint with a new rug and cushions can make something old new again so don't stress about your budget.
What tips do you have for giving a patio a spring makeover?
Sommer Poquette is a green-and-clean mom blogger who writes about her outdoor design ideas for The Home Depot. Sommer's enthusiasm for being outdoors inspired her DIY patio plans. For Home Depot's wide selection of patio furniture to help you enjoy your outdoor space, you can visit the company's website.