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Big yards matter to today’s homebuyers

A February 2022 Harris Poll showed that 72% of Americans prioritize size on their wish list for a new home. And it’s not the inside of the home that they’re talking about. Big yards matter to today’s homebuyers.

The survey, sponsored by the TurfMutt Foundation, showed that the American lifestyle has shifted to spending more time outside their homes, specifically in their yards. Since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, 24% of the homeowners surveyed said they are spending more time in their yards.

"What we are seeing with Americans is greater reliance on the backyard as an extension of the home. It's not just a place that looks pretty—it's a place to live and do daily activities such as working, dining, and relaxing," said Kris Kiser, President and CEO of the TurfMutt Foundation. "They've discovered that 'backyarding' is a better way to live and there's no turning back."

The backyard has also delivered another benefit: stress relief. Getting out to do yard work helps people relax, says 69% of the survey’s respondents. Yes, the acts of gardening, mowing, and trimming can be beneficial to your well-being!

Another survey conducted before the pandemic showed that outdoor space has been a priority for homebuyers for a long time. The Wakefield Research study reported that 56% of homeowners would sacrifice square footage inside the home to have a bigger yard.

According to the report, “The most important exterior feature of a home is distance from neighboring homes. Both millennials (48 percent) and non-millennials (53 percent) believe this breathing room is key, beating other curb appeal elements such as siding, driveway styles, exterior paint color, and roofing finishes.”

This desire to commune with the great outdoors is nothing new. Biophilia is a natural tendency for people to be attracted to natural elements. Interior designers, landscape designers, and architects incorporate biophilic design into homes to feed this desire for connecting with nature. We bring live plants into the home, welcome an abundance of natural light through large and plentiful windows, and even veer towards natural materials and textures, like wood, stone, and cotton. Fire and water features are also popular additions to outdoor living spaces because they can be calming.

What are people doing with their big yards?

Once you have the big yard you’ve been dreaming of, how will you use it? Let’s count the ways:

  • A staycation. Some homeowners have invested in creating an inviting outdoor living space where they can relax in the spaciousness of their outer sanctum. They’ve outfitted this room without walls with comfortable patio furniture, a fully stocked outdoor kitchen, fireplace, and even lighting and technology to get maximum use of al fresco living.
  • It’s all fun and games. Families love turning their big backyards into a game ground. With plenty of space, you can take your pick of lawn games like cornhole, Jenga, croquet, badminton, pickleball, horseshoes, and bocce. If you have small children, a large yard is ideal for creating a playground or splash pad where you can keep an eye on your kids at play.
  • An outdoor office. 58% of the people who responded to the Harris Poll said their work from home convenience has allowed them to use the backyard as an office—and it’s very productive!
  • Party time. Do you enjoy entertaining? Imagine hosting your family and friends in a backyard extravaganza. The bigger the yard, the bigger the party. There’s room for dining, playtime, sun, shae, and kicking back to enjoy each other’s company. 
  • A private dog park. If you have canine companions in your family, treat them to their own dog park. A fenced-in backyard gives your pup freedom to roam safely and work out all that energy that is otherwise spent in less harmless ways. You can set up a water feature where they can drink, a washing station for mud removal, and even an exercise area.
  • Hobbies. From gardening to raising chickens, the large backyard is perfect for people with outdoor hobbies. There’s room to place a tool shed, greenhouse, composting bin, chicken coop, rabbit hutch, or she shed. 

How big of a yard do you want?

Urban dwellers have made a steady exodus from the city, partly in search of a home with a large yard. Working from home has made it easier to find that space since the commute is no longer a concern. Here in Poolesville, MD, Kettler Forlines Homes is selling the final homes in our community, The Reserve at Brightwell Crossing. The three remaining homes are situated on lots of .59, .66, and 1 full acre, respectively. The homes we’re building on these large lots reflect the luxurious living that all of the residents enjoy here. Quality craftsmanship with meticulous attention to detail, and the Kettler Forlines Homes high standard for personal service add even more value to the estate homes at The Reserve at Brightwell Crossing.

Kettler Forlines Homes is also ready, willing, and able to build on your lot. If you have a piece of land that’s exactly right for your new home, let us bring our homebuilding experience to you. We’ll evaluate the land and give you all the information you need to determine how best to use it.

What matters to you matters to us. Contact George Neill at Kettler Forlines Homes to open up your mind to bigger things!