If you’re serious about selling your home or simply want to increase the value of your property, landscaping is a great way to do it. Home improvement projects typically cost about 20 to 25 cents on the dollar, with the other 75 to 80 cents spent going directly back into the home through increased value.
Curb appeal is the first consideration for homebuyers. They ask themselves, does this look like a good, well-maintained property? If the answer is yes, they are more likely to view the rest of the home.
Even if you aren’t looking to sell, upgraded landscaping will still add great value to your home, giving you the opportunity to throw more parties and the enjoyment of enhancing your home. So, what are the trends for 2018? Here’s what you need to know.
Outdoor Living Spaces
Improvements can start with something very basic, like outdoor living design. Start with high-end outdoor furniture and smart outdoor kitchens, then move upward to functional daybeds, outdoor showers, and sunken lounges. Many landscape designers in Perth say these features have become the norm rather than a luxury in many markets.
Outdoor rooms have always been popular, but in 2018 your neighbours will be inviting you over to show off their state-of-the-art home extension. Outdoor rooms mirror the functionality of indoor rooms, and the trend is increasing as more homeowners want to spend time in the fresh air.
Outdoor dining spaces also continue to be a trend in 2018. Most outdoor dining spaces tend to be built directly off the rear of the home. The newest designs make your outside dining space an all-inclusive destination within a lively garden landscape.
You can surround the dining space with in-ground and container plants, make the space a sanctuary with special flooring, lighting and furniture for the perfect dining and entertainment space.
One of the key elements to creating your landscaped nirvana for 2018 is textured paving materials. Play around with cobblestones, paving stones, and other textured flooring to create noteworthy combinations of rounded and straight edges. Designers believe the trend will shift from larger format finishes in favour of textured smaller tiles. The trend of concrete that began in 2017 will continue through 2018, experts say.
Another outdoor element that will continue from last year through to 2018 is the use of natural materials like timber. Timber will continue to remain a homeowner favourite, as it has the flexibility of fitting into any design. Allowing timber to weather can add a rugged look to your landscaping, or homeowners can choose to keep it vibrant with regular maintenance and fresh paint or stains.
Once your designer has determined an overall look for your space, you can choose the plants that will accent your décor and design. Current trends are the use of succulents, cacti, and edible gardens.
Though often thought of as simple cacti or jade, succulents have the ability to cultivate anywhere. Just keep them warm, and provide sunlight, fresh air, and dryness. Though once considered exotic, succulents are now a mainstay in nurseries and can even be mail ordered. Succulents can be managed in small pots, which gives you freedom to move them as you choose in your design scheme, or to protect them from bad weather.
But your plant life doesn’t just have to be for show. Having a well-pruned edible garden is a real treat for those who like to cook; there is nothing quite like walking out to your backyard and pulling fresh veggies and herbs to use in your meal.
And you don’t have to stick with the everyday, usual vegetable garden staples. Grow some unusual edibles like Cucamelons (grape sized cucumbers with a hint of sourness), burr gherkins, chickpeas, kale, pumpkin, carrots, edamame, sweet potato leaves, and amaranth.
It is also a great idea to include a variety of flowers in your landscape scheme. Bee-friendly flowers invite pollinators to your food crops. “Pollinators can increase your yield by ensuring your flowering crops like cucumbers, melons, and squash get pollinated. The best blooms for the veggie garden include sweet alyssum, zinnias, cosmos, nasturtiums, and calendula,” says expert Nikki Jabbour.
For evening and late-night gatherings, make sure you have appropriate lighting in all outdoor spaces, particularly on steps. Bulky, blinking fluorescents or porch lights have gone the way of the dodo as we embrace the future of energy efficient solar LEDs.
This soft lighting is an eco-friendly garden addition and provides a warm and inviting glow. You can also add well disguised LED strip lighting to steps, seats, and bench tops to compliment your outdoor design.
Though thought of as a mainstay of design in the north, fire pits are becoming all the rage. In fact, many experts believe they’ll reach peak popularity in 2018. During the last year, consumer demand for fire pits has skyrocketed.
Fire pits are no longer considered a quirky feature for a home. Homeowners view them as a key element to ensure outdoor entertaining is phenomenal. The fire pits currently available all feature different price points, which makes installing one on a budget an option.
Now that you have harnessed the elements of earth and fire, it is time to consider water. Landscaping around your pool can make a swimming pool seem like a natural part of the landscape. Expert Matt Leacy predicts, “We’ll also start to see more raw and finished concrete being used both in and out of the pool, on seating, barbecues, and general flooring.”
So what’s comes next in the world of landscaping? Experts agree that going natural with your flooring, plants, gardens, and water features to create a sanctuary of peace will be all the rage in 2018.
Thankfully, you don’t have to break the bank to install many of these elements in your own outdoor space. You can create your own slice of heaven on just about any budget.