19 Relaxing Outdoor Living Spaces On a Budget

Looking to spruce up your backyard? Here are nineteen ideas for inspiration and how to create outdoor living spaces on a budget!

Lacking a green thumb? Knowing what to do with your backyard is hard enough, but harder still when the question of budget rears its head.

Sprucing up your backyard is about more than aesthetics. A little nature can improve our mental health, so a nicer backyard gives you somewhere to find fulfillment and tranquillity.

So how can you get that boost without breaking the bank?

Look no further. Here are 19 relaxing outdoor living spaces on a budget.

1. A Little Fine Tuning

You don’t have to hire a professional to get some basic landscaping done. Get your ideas down on paper and then start moving planters, laying down some gravel, and giving everything a goodly home. Rearranging what you already have is about as low-cost as you can go!

2. Straight Fire

If you build it, they will come. Which is to say that a fire pit is the perfect low-cost, high-yield addition to your yard. It’s the ideal social spot, so you can lure your neighbors over like so many moths to spend an evening in your yard. With open fire, you can evoke that camping or beach party ambience at home.

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3. The Road to Nowhere

If you’re aiming more for “secret garden” than “social hangout,” then think about creating a winding and mysterious path through your garden. This is a cheap way to give it character, and you can achieve it with nothing more complex than some stone or wood paving — or even gravel.

4. Take a Seat

Half the appeal of any relaxing space lies in its comfort level. By turning your eye toward your seating, you can create an inviting backyard nook for hanging out. Consider creating a small seating area; a cozy corner for you and a few companions.

5. Your Safe Space

Decks and patios are a time-honored way to create relaxing outdoor living spaces. A high-quality deck or patio can get pricey, but even a basic one can transform the way you use your space. Decks and patios establish a perfect middle-ground between sitting indoors and getting a face full of bees among the bushes, creating a solid comfort zone in your yard.

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6. Swing for the Fences

Mix up some traditions and translate the American classic porch swing to the backyard. Cozier than garden furniture, the classic swing is a fun yet comfortable way to enjoy your backyard. Add a few other quirky bits of seating, and you have a cozy spot to take a breather.

7. Light It Up

Lights are the cheat code for exterior spaces. They can make anything look glamorous by drawing the eye and accentuating the positives. With judicious use of some basic lighting, you can lift your backyard space even on a budget.

8. Indoor Outdoor

Bring a taste of the indoors to the outdoor. There’s a wide variety of indoor furniture you can bring outdoors for a unique, quirky transformation. And if you’re prepared to move them where they’re needed, they can perform double duty, stretching your budget that much further.

9. Trellis-cious

Trellises are one of those basics that immediately elevate a yard. A trellis or two in the perfect spot can give the illusion of an expert touch without breaking the bank.

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10. Up In Your Grill

One easy way to transform your outdoor space is with the addition of a BBQ. It’s not an aesthetic transformation, as such, but the way it immediately brings vitality to your backyard living is worth the investment.

11. Paint a Mural

If you’re the artsy type, you always have the option of applying your talents to your garden. Painting a beautiful mural is a way to make your backyard completely unique. Better still, the labor is free.

12. Making a Splash

There’s nothing like a little running water to add a touch of class to a garden. Marble fountains may break the budget, but smaller water features are available everywhere.  

13. The Hose-Down

Why spend money on new things when you can reveal what’s already there? Getting your hands on a pressure washer can strip old grime from your paths, flags, and walls, revealing a brand-new backyard space underneath. The results may shock you.

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14. Green With Envy

Choosing evergreen plants is an excellent, cost-effective strategy. With evergreens, you can keep your backyard looking great all year round, without having to worry about what will happen to it in the winter.

15. Neat and Tidy

Tidiness is about hiding all the things you own like they’re a dirty secret. You can create a sense of tidiness in your yard by finding homes for its various pieces of clutter. A small wooden housing for your water hose, for instance, or a small shed for common garden items like your watering can — these little features will keep your outdoor space feeling neat.

16. Running Ham-Mok

There’s nothing to suggest a little outdoor luxury like a hammock. And best of all, they’re cheap. You haven’t enjoyed an outdoor space until you’ve reclined there in a hammock as the sun comes up.

17. Don’t Blow It

Hot tubs and pools make incredible additions to a backyard, but they’re out of many people’s reach. But you can make do with an inflatable hot tub for a social hangout, or a small inflatable pool for the kids. Either one will bring that summer feeling to your yard.

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18. Say It With Flowers

Simple, classic, and cheap: the flower border has it all. By edging your garden with a kaleidoscope of nature’s colors, you can bring joy and energy to your backyard

19. More Yin to Your Yang

Looking for something more chill? Shaping your backyard into a simple Zen garden can give you a private space to meditate and relax. And it’s firmly within the tenets of Zen to keep your landscaping efforts within your means.

Outdoor Living Spaces on a Budget

Creating outdoor living spaces on a budget isn’t as impossible as it seems. These 19 ideas are a great starting point, but the possibilities are endless. We hope we’ve put you in the creative mindset to come up with some of your own!

Looking to expand your yard budget? Consider cleaning out your indoor clutter to make some cash

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