Frugal Updates to Outdoor Living Spaces

Posted on 06/17/2011

Lots of us love to live outside during the summer months. Expand your home’s square footage with the addition of an outdoor living space. If you’re wondering how to transform a pathetic patio or dingy deck into a place you actually enjoy spending time, check out these ideas for making frugal updates to outdoor living spaces.

Rent a Pressure Washer - Your local home improvement store can help you with this, and it won’t cost you much. Rent a pressure washer like this one from Home Depot. Rinse away the dirt and grime left behind by Mother Nature. This fairly simple (and affordable) step will have your outdoor space gleaming.

Fill Containers and Pots - Not all plants have to be anchored to the ground. Fill affordable pots with flowers from your nursery. If you want to be really frugal, use empty coffee cans painted in bright colors like this garden featured at

Add Colorful Throw Pillows - Outdoor throw pillows are a great way to add a pop of color to your outdoor space—and a bit of comfort. They’re made from fade-resistant, weather-resistant materials. A two-pack of red outdoor pillows from is just $14.99.

Mask Ugly Features - If you’ve got a rusty fence, electrical meter or some other ugly feature you’re trying to hide, use climbing plants as a mask. They add color and aroma while affordably covering things up.

Install Fresh Mulch - A fresh layer of mulch can add definition to your yard. It’s an easy and affordable way to spruce up the outdoors quickly. Plus mulch can keep weeds at bay, which most homeowners try diligently to banish from their yards.

Use an Outdoor Rug - Bring the indoors out by adding a feature you normally only see in living rooms or bedrooms: an area rug. There are special rugs designed for outdoor use like this St. Martin Red Rug from, just $26.99. It’s a great way to make your outdoor living spaces more welcoming and comfortable without spending big bucks.

By Alison Storm

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