20 Amazing Backyard Ideas That Won’t Break The Bank

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Welcome to the best collection of Amazing Backyard Ideas…

(that won’t break the bank). 

Some say that beauty lies in your own backyard and they (quite literally) weren’t that far from the truth.  

That First Beautiful Backyard…

I remember the first time I visited a backyard that truly inspired me. 

Towering, 8-9 foot fences make this scene a sanctuary of privacy. Colorful, tasteful flower beds and landscaping vivified the corners and borders.

Giant oak trees stretched high above, looking down on the scenery with ancient wisdom.

This was the yard of a couple in their 50’s– parents of a young friend of mine. 

An ample supply of shade was necessary (because this yard was in Texas) and we sipped lemonade while listening to birds chirping and singing.

Perhaps most importantly, for me, was the peace and quiet I felt within me, while being there.

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Do we have to spend tens of thousands of dollars to get that picturesque backyard from our imaginations or memories?

No! Great backyards CAN come even with modest budgets

What you need are IDEAS, and to ENJOY the outdoors personally. With our help, and a little inspiration– you’re already on your way.

The big question is… Do you like outdoor projects?

And do you know what you want?  Perhaps more specifically– what is it that brings YOU the most joy, in a backyard?

From perfect patios to the most brilliant barbeques, our list of budget, non-bank breaking ideas will revitalize your outdoor space, transforming it into an idyll that is perfect for parties, planting, reflecting and relaxing.

So, step outside and prepare to embrace (your) great outdoors!

20 Amazing Backyard Ideas 1

The Best Backyard Ideas of 2021

If you enjoy entertaining and want to be able to throw parties even after the sun goes down, then all you need are a few simple pieces for seating and a table and some string lights to create the ambiance you’re looking for.

Big Idea: Build a Deck or Patio

A deck or patio is the perfect place to entertain in your backyard oasis, and it also offers a certain appeal for your yard. Not to mention the immense value it can potentially offer your home.

All you have to do is lay down a concrete slab, or you can build your own wooden deck and then add your outdoor furniture to make a great entertaining area.

Small Idea: Hang an Outdoor Hammock

hammock between trees

For a romantic getaway in your own backyard, you can hang a hammock under a tree with some beautiful string lights and have a date night at home.

An outdoor hammock also offers a comfortable place to nap and can get you closer to nature.

Add Mood Lighting

modern patio at night

Another budget-friendly way to enhance your backyard is by incorporating mood lighting.

outdoor string lights

Outdoor lighting offers your space a starry aesthetic and can be used in a variety of ways including along the pathways with torches or lanterns or draping string lights on the trees.

Outdoor lighting can significantly enhance the mood and can make dining outdoors a more romantic experience.

G40 Globe String Lights with Clear Bulbs

Check Latest Price on Amazon

Create a Stunning Seating Area

hanging bench with pillows

For even more seating, you can consider hanging a bench and laying down an outdoor rug and throw in some of your favorite cushions for comfort.

This effectively creates a cozy and serene place for you to hang out and it doesn’t cost a lot to do. You can even repurpose an older bench as a more cost-effective way of achieving this look.

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Making Things Simple for Your Yard

Beauty is a tremendous benefit of working on your backyard.  But you can also reap the rewards of simplicity, which makes the space more enjoyable too.

Let’s take a look at a few ideas that help you relax.

Consider Installing Some Xeriscaping

manicured backyard

Through a little creative backyard landscaping, you can create a focal point for your backyard without having to spend outside your design budget.

Instead of rocks or grass, you can use mulch and then you can add in a few stones to either create a pathway or a beautifully mastered display.

There is also no shortage of the type of plants, flowers, and shrubs you can incorporate into this kind of backyard landscaping design.

Remember, it doesn’t have to be a lush green lawn to be beautiful and ornate.

Build a Budget Bar

backyard bar

What entertaining space is complete with a bar that you built while staying within your budget?

We love the relaxed, down-home sensibility of the corrugated aluminum paired with cheerful glassware and colorful accents. All that’s needed to complete the look is a few stools and a few thirsty friends.

Christopher Knight Home Trinidad Dark Brown PE Bar
Check Latest Price on Amazon

Install an Outdoor Kitchen

beautiful outdoor kitchen night


Your backyard should really be an extension of the rest of the home.

It should be usable and functional space that you can take advantage of. An outdoor kitchen is a great way to entertain and gets people out of the house and into fresh air.

However, to do this on a budget, there are a few things you can do.

backyard fireplace

For example, choose propane. It can be quite costly to have to run gas lines, electricity, and water to an outdoor kitchen. Propane is a more affordable option and will still do a great job fueling the grill for your next party.

Building your own brick oven or even fireplace is another affordable way to incorporate an outdoor kitchen and it quite easy and quick to do if you gather all the right materials.

Keter Unity XL Indoor Outdoor Entertainment BBQ Storage Table
Check Latest Price on Amazon

Build Your Own Fire Pit

backyard fire pit

To build your own fire pit, it will typically cost you far less than it would be to purchase one.

Stone and brick can be stacked and put together to create a fire pit that is reminiscent of the higher end and expensive ones, but it is an economical addition to the backyard that you can complete yourself.

Simply outline where your fire pit will go, dig the hole, fill the pit with gravel, and then build your pit out of landscaping stones or the fire safe materials you have chosen.

Additional Fire Pit Seating

outdoor seating

If you find that you are short on seating and want to be able to invite all your friends over to sit around the fire pit, you can easily create this seating with a few inexpensive materials.

A few stones or cinder blocks and some wooden slabs can be put together to create bench-like seating that can accommodate many of your guests. You can even add some plants and flowers to the inside area of the blocks for some added decorative flair.

Upgrades and Enhancements

1. Enhance Your Fence

When you are trying to come up with backyard ideas and inspiration that are amazing and won’t break the bank, and you find that you have limited space, then you should consider how you can creatively use and enhance your fence while designing your dream backyard.

Don’t be afraid to hang signs, flowers, planters, and even string lights on your fence. This is also a good idea if you find that you only have a side yard to work with.

It is a relatively inexpensive way to completely transform the space and still allow your personality and style to shine through.

2. Repurpose Materials

cinder blocks

When you are trying to save money, it is a good idea to look around for items that you can repurpose or use to create a piece for your yard.

Cinder blocks, wooden pallets, bricks, and stones are all great materials to use and can allow you to affordably create a bench for additional seating and build your own fire pit.

You can also create an outdoor kitchen or storage area with a few metal sheets and some time.

3. Create a Gardenscape

flowers on trellis

Another inexpensive idea to enhance your backyard is creating a gardenscape with your favorite seasonal flowers.

You can also take a few points from the DIY community, and you can add some charm to your yard by building your own trellis.

You can use metal poles or wooden boards and then add a climbing plant and watch as your new garden grows.

4. Build a Pergola

backyard pergola

If you want a shady area to escape to but don’t want to break the bank doing so, then you can build your own pergola.

You can build it onto your existing deck, or you can clear out another desirable space in your yard.

Add some curtains as a finishing touch, and you have an outdoor living room the neighbors will envy.

Backyard Discovery Cedar Pergola
Check Latest Price on Amazon

5. Create a Cozy Dining Space

backyard dining table

If you love entertaining but don’t have a lot of money in the budget to completely overhaul your backyard to create a dining space, you can do so affordably by adding in a few key pieces like outdoor pillows and benches.

You can also create a table and additional seating with wooden pallets.  You can often find these from different locations for free or at a minimal cost.

6. Plant Colorful Flowers

planting flowers in backyard

Even just planting some bright and colorful flowers is a great idea for your backyard and can completely transform the space. It adds beauty to your existing landscape and flowers can be planted in even the smallest of spaces.

A few colorful varieties lining your fence, for example, will help upgrade your yard. You can also add in a stone pathway for even more character and charm.

7. Natural Seating

backyard natural seating

Tired of having to constantly clean and maintain your outdoor furniture?

Or perhaps you don’t have the funds in your design budget to purchase brand new furniture for the backyard.

Well, sod sofas are a more natural seating option and are becoming more and more popular.

8. Creative Pathways

To create an affordable garden path, mulch and gravel are two of the most inexpensive materials you can use. Simply clear out the pathway, place some landscape fabric down, and then spread out the gravel or mulch to create the path.

garden walkway

Stepping stones are another quick way you can create a path for less money, and it also requires minimal effort.

Since you have to distance the stones from one another, you will be using far less than you may have originally thought.

9. Build Your Own Planter Boxes

flowers planter box

If you have a small space to work with but still want to be able to put plants and flowers in, then building your own planter boxes is a great idea.

They can be as simple or as detailed as you want and are relatively quick and easy to construct.

Deck planters are a great option and only requires that you put in a few hours of work and it takes up very little space.

10. Upgrade Your Walkway

backyard walkway

If you have a drab white concrete walkway outside and you want to transform it, you can cut out a design in the concrete and fill in the space with your choice of stones or pebbles.

It is an affordable way to add some character to an otherwise average white walkway.

With the space you have between the walkway and your fence, you can also plant a few shrubs or colorful flowers to brighten things up with some walkway lighting.

11. Outdoor Storage

backyard furniture

For additional seating and even some much-needed storage, you can use wooden pallets or wooden slabs to create a bench.

Simply add some outdoor cushions and pillows to the top, and you have functional and comfortable seating you and your guests will love. You can also build it at a fraction of the cost it would be to purchase a storage bench brand new.

These backyard ideas are just scratching the surface of the many things you can accomplish on even the most modest design budget.

When it comes time to transform your backyard space or create the yard of your dreams, consider these budget-friendly options before you break the bank purchasing high-end patio furniture that won’t have as much character as what you can build and design yourself.

25 thoughts on “20 Amazing Backyard Ideas That Won’t Break The Bank”

  1. I cannot see a link for materials for outdoor corrugated bar. Please tell me where to find them
    Thank you.

    • I have tried and tried to get the plans for the corrugated bar but just keep going in circle to the different sites but no plans 😔. I really think this would be perfect for our deck area.

  2. how will mechanical whirlybird in a corner entertainment area supply ventilation (it extracts air out of a room).how can I ensure adequate ventilation is provided

  3. thanks for replying, but the outdoor bar/kitchen that this article begins with is the one I am trying to get some better specifications for. It is an galvanized aluminum and redwood colored Bar with a roof and sidewalls of galvanized metal it says “17 of 20” if that helps


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