How to make the most of your outside space
Is your garden a tranquil haven from the hustle and bustle, packed with colour and bursting with wildlife and shady spots to relax and entertain? Or is it a depressing wilderness of overgrown shrubs, rickety garden furniture and soggy lawns?
Not everyone has the green fingers, or the inclination, to transform their London plot into a landscaped garden – and keep it looking that way. But with spring approaching, it’s worth giving your outdoor space a bit of TLC.
Spending time outdoors among plants and wildlife has definite benefits for our mental and physical health, so if you have a London garden, no matter how small, it’s worth making the most of it.
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If you’re thinking of selling this spring, a tidy and appealing garden can really give your property the edge – in fact, it’s thought that a good garden design can boost your chances of selling by around 20%.
The same applies if you’re looking to rent out your property. A lovely, relaxing outdoor space for the summer months can be a big draw – while a garden that looks like it’s high-maintenance will be quite off-putting to potential tenants.
Time for a makeover?
If you’re not keen on getting your hands dirty, investing in a garden makeover could be money well spent, whether you’re putting your home on the market or just want to reap the benefits yourself.
Alternatively, there are plenty of simple things you can do to boost your garden’s appeal, from the clever use of plant pots and window boxes to a good pressure wash of the patio.
Here are four ideas to get you thinking:
1 Make it social
Think of your outdoor space as an extension of the interior, even if it is relatively modest in size. A priority should be creating some type of patio with a table, chairs and nicely arranged potted plants. If you have an unused spot, add an outdoor sofa or swing seat with cushions to create a living room or bar area for relaxing too.
These additions will make the whole garden more inviting, allowing prospective buyers or tenants to imagine themselves socialising in the space.
2 Reach for the sky
Gardens in London are often small, so design upwards. This is especially useful if your space is directly overlooked by neighbours. You could install a pergola at the far end of the garden and grow flowers or vines up it, adding interest and a feeling of height.
3 Get planting
Plenty of greenery and foliage is essential to any garden, otherwise it might look sterile and uninviting. If space is limited, invest in a handful of plant pots – or mix bought pots with recycled jam jars or food tins for a pretty, eclectic effect. Use them to plant herbs, flowers, shrubs … anything you like. Foliage softens a landscape and adds colour, variety, fragrance and interest.
4 Light up
Well-placed lights can make all the difference to how the garden looks in the evening – especially important if any viewings take place after dark.
Install a wall light or hanging lantern outside the back door, which leads into the garden, or put outdoor fairy lights in your trees.
A few more tips
- For an instant boost, give your shed a lick of paint – choose an attractive shade that works with your garden, such as bright blue or sage green.
- Too busy to garden? – opt for plants that can survive if you forget to water them or there’s a dry spell during the summer. Cute succulents or fragrant jasmine are good choices.
- Lawns can be hard to manage so consider artificial grass instead.
- Go wild – create a haven for wildlife with bird baths, bee hotels and butterfly-friendly species to give your garden the feelgood factor.
If you’re looking to let or sell property in Islington, Stoke Newington, Newington Green or Highbury, get in touch today, we can offer more advice about how to market your property effectively to buyers or tenants.