From being a backstage feature, outdoor spaces have taken the front seat for many successful home sales. Homeowners nowadays consider outdoor spaces jewels in a haystack, and they are willing to pay for it. With the fast-paced lifestyle, especially within and around central business districts, outdoor spaces have become people’s own version of paradise — a place where people can reset, refresh, play, and unwind without too much pressure.
If you’re one of these guys, agree with us, and are looking for a home in Georgia where the price includes gorgeous outdoor living, run through this article. We give you a checklist of the things to look out for when scanning an outdoor space:
Erosion and Soil Stability
Erosion can happen in urban areas, even in places covered by tiles, gravel, or cement. This can be because the soil is disturbed during construction (although some engineers incorporate artificial stabilizers). Bare soils can also be susceptible to erosion because no vegetation holds them in place. You can see that your yard has experienced erosion if there are:
- Uprooted vegetation
- Barren areas
- Puddles or wet patches
- Sunken Areas
- Spongy Areas
- Gullies or Cracks
It is important to consider erosion because regrading, resurfacing, or restructuring your yard isn’t cheap. The costs can run from a few hundred dollars to thousands.
If the erosion you see is a bit minimal and seems manageable on your own, you can also explore the following ways:
- Plant native plants because their roots usually grow deeper than non-native ones
- Build a retaining wall
- Incorporate a dry creek bed
- Install a walkway to divert foot traffic and avoid soil compaction
- Apply mulch to erosion-vulnerable areas
- Plant grass or other low-growing but widely creeping vegetation
Water Puddles and Flooding (Poor Drainage)
Flooding in an area without proper artificial drainage means that the soil is highly impermeable. Clay is usually the most impermeable (water cannot pass through), commonly found in agricultural lands. If you see water puddles, it may be because the soil is naturally hard to penetrate, or the depression is human-made (urban soil erosion).
To eliminate and prevent water puddles or flooding in your property or lawn, here are common things that homeowners do:
- Extend downspouts
- Raise the soil bed
Privacy and Security
Next on our list is to check how private and secure your property or yard is. In 2019, the Georgia Bureau of Crime reported that 87% of all index crimes around the state are property crimes, while the other 13% are violent crimes. While Georgia’s crime rates have been lower than the national average, it still is best to stay vigilant, and this starts with securing your property.
How to secure your property?
- Install CCTV cameras
- Install outdoor alarm systems
- Plant Hedges and Shrubs
- Thoroughly search the area for hidden entrances/exits
- Observe your neighbourhood/community
- Does your neighbour have outdoor cameras that face your property?
- Install pointed bamboo fences
- Install fences grown with prickly vines
- Check that there are no diggings below your fence
Wild animals can dig or build nests in a lawn, especially when it’s time to reproduce, nurse their young, or find a new permanent sanctuary. While some are cute and pleasing to the eyes, it usually doesn’t last that way once you realize they’ve damaged your property big time.
Basic ways to eliminate these “informal settlers” include placing a repellant near them, removing food from your property, cleaning up heaps and piles where they could hide, and scaring them over and over. If none of these work, you’ll have to hire professional animal/pest control services, which, according to Home Advisor, costs about $188 – $556 on average.
Invasive Plant Species
Low-growing, widely creeping vegetation are great at stabilizing soil. The downside is, some of these plants are invasive. Invasive plants are organisms that can spread fast and aggressively when introduced in a new ecosystem, potentially damaging the existing ecosystem. Plus, they’re a nuisance because you’ll need to maintain your yard more often than yards without invasive plant species.
If you’re also into gardening and landscaping, and you want to make your lawn look as perfect as it can be, having invasive plant species can make this challenging to achieve. So, to prevent this, when you visit your potential home, take pictures of the plants you see. Then try to identify them with the help of online resources and plant experts.
Some invasive plants commonly seen in backyards include:
- Violets (Viola sororia)
- Creeping Charlie (Glechoma hederacea)
- Plantain (Plantago major)
- Smartweed (Polygonum spp.)
When choosing a property, we advise you not to dilly-dally the selection process and be as meticulous as you can be. If you haven’t found the right home after visiting so many properties already, get in touch with us at HomeSold GA. We are a licensed and experienced real estate broker in Georgia, and we can look for your dream home wherever you want in the state. Call us today at 770-668-4888, and let’s talk about what you’re looking for.