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How to Create a Front Yard That Says “Welcome Home”

Turn your front yard into a reflection of the love you have for your home and neighborhood.

If you drive through any suburban neighbourhood, you’ll see a sea of green, punctuated by a few flower gardens and a smattering of trees or shrubs. You want your front yard to be different, to stand out and say “welcome home” after a busy day. The only thing holding you back? Not knowing where to start. 

We all have a pretty good idea of what we want to have in our backyards. A patio for dining and entertaining. Beautiful gardens. A pool. But when it comes to the front yard, we’re not as clear. 

At first glance, front yard landscape design can feel a little restrictive — however, the possibilities for creating a beautiful and relaxing front yard are plentiful. The trick is to strike a balance between practicality and aesthetics. 

To give you a head start in creating an inviting new outdoor space for your home, our landscape designers have put together this checklist to help make the transformation easier.

At Vandenberg, we always start with “why?”.

Knowing why you are looking to upgrade your yard is the important first step in what we call our “purpose-driven design process.” Because when we know what it is you’re looking for, we can create award-winning spaces in a way that is refreshing and collaborative. 

In our experience, here are a few reasons why people want to transform their front yards.

  • Improve curb appeal — A well-designed front yard can increase the attractiveness of your front yard and raise your home’s overall value. 
  • Personal satisfaction — Improving the front yard provides an opportunity to express your personality and create an environment that brings you joy and satisfaction. Your front yard is also a visual reflection of the pride and love you have for your home and the neighborhood you live in. 
  • Make it more functional — Upgrading the front yard lets you make the most of your outdoor space, and may involve adding seating areas, pathways, gardens or play spaces for children and pets. 
  • Create additional living space — Although most people spend most of their time in the backyard, your front yard can also be designed to be an extension of your home, offering a place to relax, entertain guests or enjoy outdoor activities. 
  • Unify the neighbourhood — When multiple homeowners invest in upgrading their front yards, it creates a sense of pride and unity within the community.
  • Increase social interactions — The front yard represents the barrier between your private space and the public, including your neighbours. By making it easier to interact with others, you can create a feeling of familiarity and foster a sense of belonging within the community. 

How you answer these questions will dictate the kind of improvements you make, the materials you’ll use and the features you add.

Now, let’s dig a little deeper…

This is where the fun begins! Once you know why you want to transform your front yard, it’s time to start designing it. At Vandenberg, the first step is to meet with you and get to know you better.

Then we start planning out your vision on paper, helping you prioritize features, choose appropriate materials and incorporate meaningful details. Here are a few questions to ask yourself when planning your own front yard transformation:

  • What is your personal style and aesthetic preferences? There are many different design styles, including modern, traditional, minimalist and cottage garden, to name a few. Decide which style resonates with you and compliments the architecture of your home.
  • Do you have any specific requirements or desires for the front yard? If you intend on spending time in the front yard, determine which features should be included in the design. Do you need seating areas? Space for children to play? A designated area for pets? 
  • How much space needs to be devoted to parking? Knowing this will determine how much space is dedicated to the driveway and how much is available for lawn and gardens. How many cars need to be parked there? Are you on a busy road? If so, you may need to include space for turning around your vehicles. Which materials should you choose for your driveway?
  • Are there any practical considerations? Think about the existing conditions of the front yard, including soil type, drainage and sun exposure. Are there any potential challenges or limitations? Also consider your budget, local regulations and how much time you’re willing to invest in the transformation.

It’s not always easy to envision what the space will look like, so we create 3D digital models of the completed design. This lets you try it on for size and see exactly what it’ll look like before any construction begins.

Come home to “incredible”...

Imagine driving up a stunning driveway, exiting your vehicle and walking past vibrant gardens towards the entrance of the place you call home. By transforming your front yard, this dream can be your reality. There are numerous features and enhancements you can add to your front yard, including the following:

  • Boost curb appeal with plants — Adding colourful flower beds full of native and ornamental plants will give your property an instant boost. Incorporate various textures and heights for visual interest and be sure to include a few evergreen shrubs for year-round appeal!
  • Create inviting pathways — A well-designed walkway can improve safety and make your entrance more accessible. Using a variety of patterns and materials, such as pavers and natural stone, can add character to your front yard.
  • Include focal points and eye-catching features — Incorporating a striking focal point, such as a fountain, sculpture or a charming garden bench adds personality and appeal to your front yard. Use decorative lighting to highlight these features at night and create a magical glow.
  • Privacy and screening options — Spending more time in the front yard doesn’t mean you have to be on public view. Your design can include a fence or hedge for privacy and security. You can also use trellises, lattice panels or some other outdoor structure to create a secluded outdoor space. Of course, all such structures, especially fences, should comply with local bylaws — something our designers are well-versed in.

Interested in transforming your front yard?

As you can see, by investing in your front yard, you can create a visually appealing outdoor space that stands out in the neighbourhood and welcomes you home after a busy day.

At Vandenberg, we believe there’s nothing quite like a grand entrance! With proper planning and knowing your “why”, you can create the stunning front yard you’re after — whether that means a sweeping cobblestone driveway, a quiet nook to watch the world go by or a show-stopping garden full of gorgeous plants.

Whatever you decide, the goal is to create a warm and welcoming atmosphere and make your front yard an interesting and beautiful jewel in your neighourhood. If you’d like some ideas on how to transform your front yard, schedule a consultation and speak with one of our designers. There’s no obligation and we’re happy to share ideas to help your landscape reach its full potential.

Written by  Matt Vandenberg