As spring and summer draw closer, many homeowners throughout the U.S. have their sights set on spending some quality time outdoors. For you, this may also mean making some much-needed improvements to your yard. But as with any other major home renovation, you can't afford to overlook the most important details that make a backyard enjoyable and affordable. When you flip your outdoor space, avoid these flops:
Mistake No. 1 - Using sod
Homeowners might assume that getting a picture-perfect backyard is as easy as rolling out some new sod. Unfortunately, this expectation is much different than the reality. Properly laying high-quality sod is an expensive, labor-intensive affair, especially after considering the additional work that must be spent to maintain it. Anyone who takes yard care seriously will probably not want to think about all the time they must spend trimming, weeding and watering their lawns if they want to keep things looking as good as new year-round.
Not only that, but using natural sod to cover your lawn requires special attention to drainage. According to the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors, homeowners on lots with certain types of expansive soil could see a significant buildup of standing water after periods of heavy rain. Standing water in grass could create hazards to the home's foundation as well as to your health, as it serves as a breeding ground for mosquitoes. Even with a good drainage system, it may be difficult to avoid pools of standing water with natural sod.
While it is widely used in a number of settings, traditional concrete is prone to warping and cracking, especially when exposed to constant abuse from rain and sunlight. That means the patio or walkway you just installed could quickly become a liability all its own, requiring constant maintenance to fill cracks and remove imperfections.
Mistake No. 2 - Installing concrete
To make your backyard truly unique, you may choose to install a paved surface like a patio or walkway. Homeowners might naturally assume that this could be easily done with concrete, but in reality, there are several much more prudent options.
Stone pavers are more durable than concrete.
Homeowners who opt for stone pavers, however, see much better results in terms of ease of installation, durability and long-term resilience. Stone is much less porous than concrete, allowing it to stand up to greater stress caused by heavy rainfall. A stone-paved walkway also handles heavy loads better than concrete slabs, since the stones are able to bear weight individually rather than all at once. This helps reduce wear and tear over time and leads to a better-looking backyard in the end.
Like many other home renovation projects, a backyard overhaul can be a complicated undertaking. However, by choosing the right materials beforehand, homeowners can prevent the kind of disappointment that usually follows after having spent so much time on a backyard that's impossible to maintain. Take installation costs and long-term maintenance into account and talk to System Pavers about your next backyard makeover. Create a backyard you actually can enjoy.