How to Maximize a Small Yard Space

Can you spot the $207,744 difference between these identical homes?

Financing is the difference!

Get the details in The 62+ Loan Homebuyers Guide.

55places Mortgage is a joint venture between Mutual of Omaha Mortgage and 55places.com.
Details here.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Get Weekly Updates

I agree that 55places and its affiliates, partner providers or agents may call, text, or email me about my inquiry, which may be made with automated means. I understand that my consent is not a prerequisite for buying a property. I may revoke my consent at any time by contacting optout@55places.com. Message/data rates may apply. I also agree to 55places.com’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

The more uses your yard space has, the larger it will feel. Check out these tips to maximize your yard.
How To Maximize Your Yard Space
The more uses your yard space has, the larger it will feel. Check out these tips to maximize your yard.

The benefits to downsizing in retirement are plentiful: you’re forced to get rid of excess stuff to fit the reduced square footage, leading to a simpler and less stressful lifestyle. Downsizing might lead to more zen inside the home but what about your yard space? Squeezing all of your outdoor furniture, garden materials, and grill into a space the size of a parking spot can lead to a very cluttered yard.

So what to do to maximize a small yard? Here we offer some design tips to turn your small yard into a dream outdoor space.  

Create Distinctive Spaces

The more uses your yard space has, the larger it will feel. Having designated spots for relaxing, gardening, and cooking greatly enhances the space, making the backyard feel more functional than cramped. Think of your backyard as a series of outdoor rooms that are separated by tastefully placed gates or shrubs.

Front Yard Garden

Enhancing your curb appeal is always a good idea, but it can also create the illusion that your yard is spacious. Having gardens on both sides of the front yard make it appear wider, while hedges create a sense of privacy (and they’re cheaper than masonry walls). In some active adult communities, the HOA has restrictions on what you can do in the front yard, so look at the covenants before committing to a renovation.

Don’t Skimp on Hardscaping

Some homeowners make the mistake of sacrificing large paved walkways in order to maximize green space. Not only does this create cramped sidewalks, it won’t scale appropriately to your home, making the yard space look even smaller. Generally speaking, paved walkways should be at least four feet across.

Blur the Boundaries

Nothing calls attention to your yard’s size more than clearly defined boundaries. If you must have a fenced-in yard, try to keep the fence as short as possible. Planting some trees and shrubbery that block a clear line of sight to the fence creates the illusion that the yard extends beyond its boundaries. For an even more dramatic effect, you could plant flowers and shrubs that match your neighbor’s garden so it appears as if your yards are fused.

Don’t Neglect Your Side Yard

Think of your side yard less as a connection between the front and the back but rather as a transitional space, where the noise of the street gradually gives way to your quiet and secluded back yard. Giving your side yard some love will not only provide another calming environment, but will also appear to be a natural extension of the back yard, making the outdoor space look larger than it is. Side yards are also ideal locations for vertical gardens, tasteful storage areas, or a meditation area.

Toss In Some Water 

Having a small yard typically means being close to your neighbors. Very close. Although active adult communities are generally quiet places to live, traffic and neighborly noises can often be just enough to disturb your peaceful escape. Putting in a modest fountain or koi pond can help reduce the noises that come with close living quarters. Having a variety of water features that create distinctive sounds also helps create unique sounds that are associated with specific areas, giving each area a certain personality.

Manipulate the Perspective

Anyone who has studied photography or fine art has a fundamental understanding of perspective. Using lines of sight and placement of objects can fool the eye into believing a space is larger than it actually is. Paved walkways should be straight since parallel lines seem to “disappear,” giving the impression that it extends indefinitely. Larger objects placed far from seating areas appear smaller and give the space a greater sense of depth.

Can you spot the $207,744 difference between these identical homes?

Financing is the difference!

Get the details in The 62+ Loan Homebuyers Guide.

55places Mortgage is a joint venture between Mutual of Omaha Mortgage and 55places.com.
Details here.

We're here to help! (800) 928-2055

Call us to speak with a customer service representative.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Get Weekly Updates

I agree that 55places and its affiliates, partner providers or agents may call, text, or email me about my inquiry, which may be made with automated means. I understand that my consent is not a prerequisite for buying a property. I may revoke my consent at any time by contacting optout@55places.com. Message/data rates may apply. I also agree to 55places.com’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

The grounds of Gatherings at Potomac Station in Leesburg, Virginia.

New Active Adult Communities Added to 55places.com

In this comprehensive roundup, we bring you the latest additions to 55places.com—a trusted resource for exploring active adult communities. Over the past 30 days, several new communities have joined the ranks, each offering different amenities and locations.

A golf cart outside the golf club at CountryPlace in Pearland, Texas.

Retire on the Links in Houston, TX: Golf Course Homes for Sale

Active adults who are lifelong golfers or newfound golf enthusiasts can easily enjoy the sport when their neighborhood contains a golf course. Homebuyers who desire a golf course lifestyle and want to remain near the heart of a big city can find a great fit at one of these exceptional Houston area communities.

Moving to South Carolina? Here’s Everything You Need to Know

South Carolina is a state known for its incredible coastal beauty, charm, hospitality, acclaimed golf courses, and vibrant culinary scene that’s full of rich Southern dishes. It’s also home to some of the most desirable retirement destinations in the country–and for good reason.

Close up on a tiny wood home model on green grass, a representation of the real estate market.

Real Estate Summary: This Month in the 55+ Housing Market

This month, we brought in more than beautiful flowers. There are also lower mortgage rates and new homes for the housing industry! Below is a more in-depth breakdown of what happened and why now is an excellent time to enter the market.

A side-by-side image of Savannah, Georgia and Atlanta, Georgia.

Savannah vs Atlanta: Which Is Better For Your Retirement?

Georgia is a popular destination for active adults looking to retire–and Savannah and Atlanta are two of the state’s biggest draws. So how do you know which city is better for you? We’ve put together a guide to offer some helpful insight into both cities to help decide which one might be best for your retirement.

View down the the street of Downtown Charleston, South Carolina at sunset.

The Best Places to Retire in South Carolina

South Carolina is known for having some of the best golf courses in the country, but that’s not all it has to offer active adults. The state has a rich history and culture, a wide selection of entertainment and recreation, and miles of beaches and coastal living.

About 55places

We’re changing the way people 55 and older are searching for their perfect next place. With a national network of hand-selected real estate experts, plus comprehensive information, unbiased content, and on-the-go insight about thousands of communities across the country, we’re a trusted resource paving the way from here to home. Whether you’re interested in a low-maintenance single-level residence, an active lifestyle or age-qualified community, an intimate enclave, or anything in between, we can help you make your next move the best one yet.

Scroll to Top