While we all may dream of having a luscious green backyard, the Arizona climate can make it difficult to keep greenery thriving. Driving around Metro Phoenix, you’ll see a lot of people opt for hardscapes, which can be low maintenance and still look great. Hardscapes are technically defined as the non-living elements in landscaping, such as a brick patio, a stone wall, or a wooden arbor. This leaves a lot of room for creativity, all while foregoing the stress of keeping things alive. With so many options, it can be difficult to narrow down exactly what design to go with, so Shea Homes® is here to help you rock your hardscape.

Look for Inspiration – With hardscapes being so popular in the Valley, there is bound to be lots of inspiration around your neighborhood. Next time you’re out for a run or walk, pay attention to the different designs that those around you may have for their yards, and take note of which aspects you like, and don’t like. You’ll probably be able to notice that different areas of Metro Phoenix have different styles, so choose whether you want to follow what’s around you or opt for a more unique set up for your backyard.

Know Your Function – Having an understanding of what kind of space you want your yard to be will affect how you hardscape. If you have younger kids, you may want to avoid sharper edges that may come with block walls. If you plan on hosting people, you’ll want to leave proper room for dining tables, and extra space to lounge once the food is gone. You may also want to consider what kind of products will affect different uses, for example some pavers may be better suited for water splashes from a pool, so don’t short your research.

Mapping – Similar to knowing your function, you want to know where everything is going to go. Beginning one section of your yard before understanding exactly where it will end may not work out. You may end up with less space than you anticipated for one section or end up with extra space that you didn’t plan to fill at the end. Make sure you mark off or separate different sections of the yard clearly so when all is said and done, you have the proper space for your perfect yard.

Budgeting – Ah yes, everyone’s favorite task. Whether you enjoy creating a budget or not, it’s undoubtedly very important, and determines what you’re going to do with your hardscape. Many have made the mistake of underestimating how expensive hardscape pieces are, so make sure you have a proper understanding of how much the total project will cost, so you aren’t left disappointed with an unfinished yard.

DIY or Pro? – While we fully believe in your ability to create an awe-inspiring backyard yourself, sometimes it’s just easier to call in the pros. Make the call beforehand on which parts of the project you can do yourself, and what to leave to a professional. There are certainly easier sections of a hardscape than others, so it’s rare to need professionals to do the whole project, but that remains an option if you want to relax while you watch your dream yard come together. You’ll need to factor this into your budget, so consider working on these two steps simultaneously.
What are your favorite hardscape creations?
To learn more about Shea Homes, visit sheahomes.com.
**Please ensure you consult with a professional before making any changes or additions that could alter the drainage patterns. Alterations to drainage patterns could damage your home and other nearby structures and these are not covered under your new home Warranty.

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