How to renovate your garden and house exterior for less

Don’t forget the yard!
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Don’t forget the yard when planning your budget reno. You can make big improvements to how your home looks from the street and to your outdoor entertaining areas too.

RELATED: How to renovate indoors for less



  • Spreading mulch over your garden soil gives the garden a finished look, but it can be expensive to buy in bags. Some local councils offer free mulch, so check out this option first. Alternatively, buy in bulk from a landscape supply company.
  • When it comes to plant buying, do a little comparison shopping – nurseries vary significantly in price and quality.
  • Don’t impulse buy at the nursery. They often place large tables of potted colour where you walk in, but pretty as they are, these are often short-lived seasonal blooms. Instead, spend money on hardy shrubs, to provide foundation plants for your landscape. Also, keep an eye out for end-of-season sales.
  • Scrounge new plants from garden-loving friends. They’ll often have way too many vigorous growers like agapanthus or daylilies and be more than happy for you to dig up a few clumps.
  • Get your green thumb on and propagate new plants from cuttings. If you’re a complete beginner, go for the fail-safe guys such as succulents and geraniums.


  • Put on a warm welcome with a front porch redo! Paint the door in a light and bright colour then complete the look with plantings that highlight the colour. A small table setting adds a homey touch.
  • Bring your deck and outdoor furniture back to life. Use deck cleaner to remove dirt and greying timber then give them a coat of stain or paint. You’ll be amazed at the difference.
  • If you’re installing a paved area in your garden, check out the price-reduced paving lines at your landscape supplier. This is often because they’ve been replaced by a newer (but very similar) line.
  • Revive old pots and planters, rather than spending money on brand new versions. Terracotta and cement containers can be scrubbed up with hot sudsy water, and then given a fresh coat of paint, to come up looking like new. Use an exterior grade paint with a flat or low-sheen finish.
  • Rather than spending money on garden edging products, recycle old bricks or pavers instead. Or go for a neat spaded edge, which is cut into the lawn with a sharp spade.
  • Look out for second-hand tools and equipment at recycling centres. That way, you can spend more money on the garden, rather than Photography the contents of your shed.

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