2017 Houzz landscaping trends: neighbours play an important role in garden upgrades

British homeowners look to their neighbours for inspiration when undertaking landscaping projects, according to the 2017 Houzz UK Landscaping Trends Survey. The survey of UK homeowners using Houzz who are in the midst of, are planning, or who recently completed an outdoor project, found that among those with next-door neighbours, one in five (23%) revealed that their new garden had been influenced by a nearby household.

The study also found that British homeowners are building bridges with neighbours following landscaping renovations as 15% of homeowners interact more with their neighbours after a landscaping update. Top interactions range from small talk (73%), exchanging courtesy greetings (67%), helping when needed (45%) and sharing drinks with each other (32%). One in five (23%) however, admitted that their garden makeover was motivated by a lack of privacy, demonstrating that UK homeowners value their own space, too. Unsurprisingly, half (50%) of those updating non-structural features, improved their fence or property border.

A nation of garden lovers, UK homeowners spend around eight hours per week in their gardens during the warmer months, and two hours per week during the colder months. During landscape projects, British homeowners are creating comfortable outdoor spaces for entertaining and relaxing with items like outdoor dining and lounge furniture (43% and 33%, respectively), treating their gardens as an extension of the home. Nearly one in 10 is investing in outdoor kitchen equipment, such as a barbecue and either built-in cabinetry, a sink and/or a refrigerator (8%). Pizza ovens are also popular additions, with 9% prioritising one.

“Our research shows that one in two renovating homeowners make upgrades to their gardens and/or outdoor structures,” said Andrew Small, managing director of Houzz UK. “Home buyers are key drivers of these renovations, motivated to extend their living spaces to the gardens and achieve a stylish yet low maintenance surroundings. Outdoor kitchens and elaborate outdoor lighting are key trends to look out for in 2017.”

Along with large scale projects, UK homeowners on Houzz are making significant investments in their gardens. Half budget £3,000 or less for their landscape projects (51%), but only two-fifths spent this amount (42%). Meanwhile, more than half spend more than £3,000 (58%), with only 49% budgeting this amount, indicating that budgets do not always align with spending. Additional findings include:

  • Lighting goes smart: Nearly half of homeowners are updating lighting during their outdoor projects (62%). Of those making this upgrade, 15% installs “smart” lighting that can be controlled from a mobile device and 12% installs wireless lighting. Other top features are LEDs (72%), solar (46%) and low-voltage (25%).
  • Reducing the lawn: Of the more than three-fourths of homeowners who have a lawn, 81% make changes to it during an outdoor project. Nearly two in five replant their lawn (39%), almost a fourth reduce its size (24%) and 12% remove it altogether. Top reasons for reducing and removing lawns are to achieve new outdoor design (78%) and reducing maintenance (44%).
  • Months of planning: On average, landscape project planning takes about five months, while implementation runs just over four months, on average. The majority of projects break ground in March (19%). Other popular months are April (17%) and September (11%).
  • Professional hiring remains high: The majority of homeowners hire professionals for their landscaping updates (66%). Stone, pavers and/or concrete specialists are most commonly hired (19%), followed by patio and decking specialists and landscape contractors (18% respectively).

You can download the full UK Houzz Landscaping Trends Study here.