January 27, 2022 castlebri



Home isn’t just where the heart is in the 2020s; home is where we’re spending a good bit of our time. The pandemic has changed just about everything about everyday life. Feel the need for a change? Instead of facing a fierce housing market, why not upgrade your current home? Start by remodeling your outdoor living space.  

More Room to Roam 

3508_deck_4Project 3427-1 Backyard Covered Patio Outdoor Kitchen LR 1Project 2978-2 Front Porch Remodel Makeover + Landscaping St. Paul 55105 LR 1






Most of us spent about 25% more time at home in 2021 than we did in 2019, and there’s no indication we’ll be leaving any time soon. Remodeling your patio and yard can add hundreds more square feet to your living space.  

Minnesotans might stay indoors when the temperatures drop, but something as simple as a screened porch addition or outdoor fireplace could help alleviate cabin fever. Come spring, a remodeled outdoor space can become your second kitchen, living room, entertainment area, or playroom.  

Increase Home Value​​ 

Landscaping is one of the best investments you can make in your home because it raises your property value. A green lawn never goes out of style, and adding flower beds or hardscaping only increases the charm.  

If you’re thinking about putting your home on the market in the near future, updating your outdoor living space could net you tens of thousands of dollars more on that sale. 

Give Yourself a Creative Project 

Americans are spending lots of time on Netflix and Wordle these days, but turning the screens off and diving into a creative project is not just fun; it’s good for you. While the snow is falling and the lakes are frozen, it’s time to do the planning. A garden consultation with the pros now can get you on the right track ahead of the spring. Sketch out a rough plan if a new outdoor kitchen or a fire pit on the patio sounds appealing. A creative project now will get you planning for the future.  

Improve your Mental Health 

Project Project 3419-1 Backyard Living Area Screen Porch Deck Bar LR 1







It’s proven science: spending time in a green space is good for your mental health. Whether it’s the wilds of northern Minnesota or the confines of your backyard, spending time outside lowers your levels of cortisol, the stress hormone. So while looking for snow mold in your lawn in the early spring or fixing salt damage may not sound like fun, it’s actually better for your brain than scrolling on your phone. Preparing your lawn for spring gives you a chance to take a look at the bigger picture and decide on enhancements that will entice you and your family outdoors. 

And it’s not just the green living things that reduce your stress. Focusing on the task at hand can stop a spiral of negative thoughts and shake gloomy feelings.  

There’s probably more snow in the forecast right now, but the early spring crocuses will be popping up before you know it. Have a remodeling plan ready to go as soon as the ice melts, and you could have the outdoor living space of your dreams in place by the summer solstice. 


Erin Langford is a home stager and landscape design writer. She loves entertaining and playing in her backyard, but she hates yard work.  She recently expanded her patio and added an outdoor kitchen so she has less grass to mow.