Our Favorite Small Backyard Ideas for Entertaining

small backyard ideas for entertainingJust because you have a small backyard doesn’t mean you can’t entertain. Here at Structurally Speaking, we specialize in designing outdoor living spaces that make the best use of whatever space you do have available. Here are some of our top small backyard ideas for entertaining. We’d love to help you combine these ideas into the best backyard for you with a custom deck or porch.

Add a Custom Deck Suited to the Shape of Your Yard

One of the biggest issues we see as deck contractors, especially on small lots, is that they are a standard square or rectangle shape. Not only is this boring, but it also often isn’t the best shape to maximize the space available.

Instead, it makes sense to have a custom deck designed specifically for your home. This can make a small backyard look bigger, since not an inch of space is wasted. When you work with the Structurally Speaking team, we’ll start by talking to you about how you intend to use your new deck. Having a custom design gives you a lot more options.

Consider a Mobile Outdoor Kitchen

Outdoor kitchens are beautiful, but they can take up a lot of space. If your backyard is tiny, even a grill might feel too big, let alone counter space, refrigerators or coolers, and other outdoor appliances. At the same time, an outdoor kitchen does make it easier to entertain, since you can interact with your guests instead of being cooped up in your kitchen.

The solution? Make your small outdoor kitchen as mobile as possible so it can have multiple uses and be stored away when you need extra space. For example, maybe instead of adding a countertop, you instead have a rolling cart so you can wheel out the food you’ll be cooking. Then, once you’re done, you can wheel the cart back instead.

two story deckBuild Up Instead of Out with a 2-Story Deck/Porch

Multi-story decks and porches can add twice as much space to your backyard for entertaining. This is one of our favorite small backyard ideas for entertaining, since it gives you so many more options. We love a small deck on top and porch on the bottom, but the sky is really the limit when it comes to the 2-story design.

With a multi-level design, you can add a set of stairs outside. Alternatively, you can access the second level through the inside of the house. Outdoor stairs are more convenient, but they do take up more space. We can help you design what is right for your backyard entertaining space.

Make Your Backyard More Private without Compromising the Design

You can make your backyard feel more private with smart design elements. If you feel like you’re too close to your neighbors, you can consider adding fencing or areas where plants can climb. We love native climbing plants, since it gives you the privacy you want while also keeping the space feeling open, rather than closed off like you get with a tall privacy fence.

Keep Clutter to a Minimum with Smart Storage Solutions

When you have a large backyard, you can create different zones or areas for different purposes. For example, you might have one section set up for sunbathing, another with a dining table, yet another with outdoor games, etc. This isn’t always possible with a small backyard. In fact, trying to incorporate all your needs at once can make your space feel small and cluttered.

Instead, create smart storage solutions so you can have more space when you’re entertaining. For example, you could add hooks on the wall to fold and store lounge chairs if you want to make more room for mingling.

Choose Your Colors Wisely

While you may not be able to change the physical size of your backyard, you can make it look bigger using a few design tricks:

  • Use lighter colors when you choose decking materials.
  • Pick one or two main colors and stick to them.
  • Add blocks of color and texture using large outdoor rugs perfectly sized to your space.
  • Remember that in an outdoor space, green becomes a neutral color so adding plants on a deck or porch can make the space seem bigger.

We love to design backyards that look like they are original to your home. So, if you’re unsure what colors will look best, we can make suggestions based on the existing colors and your home style.

Make Sure the Space is Well Lit

Last but not least, if you want to make a small backyard look bigger, make sure you add lighting. We often think about lighting in terms of making an area safe. However, lighting can also ensure that every corner of your yard is a nice place to hang out during a party. With well-placed lighting, you can make your small deck a better space for entertaining.

FAQs About Our Small Backyard Ideas for Entertaining

The Structurally Speaking team would love to help you design the backyard of your dreams. If you have any questions, we’d be happy to answer them. Here are a few frequently asked questions to start:

Do you have other ideas for making my backyard perfect for entertaining?

Yes! We’d love to talk to you about your specific needs so we can incorporate other small backyard ideas into your design. We love to customize every project for the specific type of entertaining our homeowners love to do.

What does a backyard deck or porch cost?

This depends on multiple factors, such as the decking material you choose and the complexity of your design. Before we start, we always talk about your budget. We stick to the price quote we give you so you never have to worry about an inflating price that gets bigger and bigger during the construction process.

Is my backyard too small for a deck?

Most backyards are big enough for a small deck at the very least. Keep in mind that when you add a deck, you sacrifice grass and garden space. However, this might be the best option for your needs. Give us a call today to set up a free consultation. We’d love to see your backyard space and talk about the deck design that might work best for you.