Just Bought a New Home With a Big, Bare Backyard? 2 Ways to Enjoy It This Summer Until You Can Afford to Build That Deck

Posted on: 29 December 2016

If your family just moved into a new home with a large back yard for the first time, then you are likely looking forward to a lot of spring- and summer-time fun in the yard when the temperatures warm up. However, if there are no places to escape the sun and/or rain while in the yard, like a covered deck and a swimming pool, and your savings account took too big of a hit when covering the down payment of your new home to invest in renovations yet, then you may worry that your family won't really get to enjoy the yard until then. However, you can stop worrying about what you can't yet afford and begin looking forward to both the adults and children having fun in that big backyard this summer when you follow these tips. 

1. Plan Fun Backyard "Camping Trips" with Your Children

Whether your children and you may or may not love camping in the wilderness, you will likely all enjoy camping right in your back yard! If your family already goes camping on occasion, then you may already have all of the supplies your family needs to have a great time camping in your own back yard. 

If you don't already have camping gear, then you really only need a few items to camp in your own back yard. Of course, the most important item you need is a tent, but you can find a low-cost tent and not have to worry about its durability so much as long as you camp on on clear nights when it is not raining (if it starts raining, you can all just head back inside!). 

In lieu of sleeping bags, if your children don't already have them, you can have each child bring out their bed comforter and pretend like it is one just by folding it over and sleeping on half while covering up with the other half. All of your bed pillows can also be brought outside to rest your heads on while gazing at the stars above. 

Of course, you can't forget the fun snacks typically enjoyed in the great outdoors after being cooked over a campfire. If you love DIY projects, look into your local city ordinances and see if they allow you to build a fun backyard brick fire pit that your family can cook skewered hot dogs over and, of course, heat those marshmallows on to make tasty s'mores!

2. Host Fun, Low-Cost Backyard Barbecues for Your Friends and Family 

You don't need a deck and an expensive, top-of-the-line propane grill to host a fun backyard barbecue for your friends and family. However, if you do plan to invest in a good grill when summertime arrives, it may be a better idea to start looking for one now. Good deals on backyard grills can be found in the fall and winter when stores are still trying to get last year's stock out of their warehouses to make room for the next year's models. If you can't find a good deal, then a gas grill can be much more affordable and some people simply love the taste of food cooked over hot coals on a gas grill. 

Once you find a backyard grill, all you need is affordable seating and outdoor, pop-up canopies to shield your guests from the sun and stay prepared for the always-present risk of rainfall. A great, classic outdoor seating option that cannot only be used during your barbecues but also on nice days when your family would like to eat outside is the classic picnic table. If you can fit two into your backyard, then you can have plenty of table- and seating-space for a small group of friends during your barbecues. 

Often called "instant shelters," pop-up canopies can be placed over your picnic tables to shield your guests from the sun and allow them to keep eating and enjoying their food even if it begins raining! Ranging in size from smaller than 8 feet x 8 feet to 10 feet x 20 feet or larger, it is a great idea to purchase one large canopy to cover both picnic tables, which end-to-end would be about 12-feet long (most picnic tables are about 6 feet long x 3 feet wide).

Pop-up canopies are often customization, and you can find lots of other uses for the ones you purchase when you are not barbecuing. You can purchase sidewalls to add to them (although many already come with them) that not only shields your guests from the elements above, but also protects them from the wind.

If you just purchased a home with a large back yard, yet you don't think your family will be able to enjoy it until you can afford to have a backyard deck built onto it, then think again! There are many affordable ways to have fun in the backyard while you save up for that backyard renovation. In fact, you may enjoy "backyard camping" with your children and enjoying the outdoors under your canopies so much that you decide that the deck isn't such an urgent renovation project after all.