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Real Estate

Backyards Are Front And Center

Outdoor improvements that increase ROI & enjoyment

As we’ve been cocooned inside our homes, some in South Florida have been grateful to have an outdoor retreat. Our verdant backyards are often the envy of many across the country in the winter but it seems having outdoor space is more coveted since March of this year.

Search data shows that single-family home searches are up 40% since the shelter in place orders, but more notably searches for outdoor spaces have doubled and pools have tripled! These are valuable indicators of where you should invest if you are thinking of enhancing your home for a future sale. In truth, improving your outdoor living spaces in the near term strikes me as something that will provide increased enjoyment as summer vacations seem limited for some time.

Here are a few backyard enhancements that will elevate your home’s marketability and stay-ability.

  • Pool: If you’ve been considering a pool and have the space for it, this is a highly sought after feature as the data shows. However, I caution you not to eat up your entire yard with one or build one so close to your house that it seems forced. A backyard needs breathing room too.
  • Outdoor Kitchen: Many buyers are looking to utilize their yards as an extension of interior living areas. Indoor/outdoor living is, after all, synonymous with Miami. Cooking and dining al fresco has surged in popularity.
  • New Landscaping: The National Association of Realtors says an outdoor makeover that includes thoughtful landscaping can result in 105 percent return on investment. Consider lighting and low maintenance plants to enhance convenience.
  • Edible Garden: Not all of us have green thumbs but the search engine searches for this hobby during the quarantine have skyrocketed according to USA Today. If you have the space and inclination, this could be one of the hobbies that stick after we weather this storm. To have a designated space with proper irrigation can be enticing to some buyers, not to mention a great project for kids.

It goes without saying, impact windows and doors are all but a requirement now but these outdoor features can also differentiate your home from others on the market when the time comes. Out-of-town buyers in particular want to tour South Florida homes and expect resort-style backyards. It is befitting as we still live in paradise, masks and all.

Carole Smith
Author: Carole Smith

Carole Smith
the authorCarole Smith
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