Best Garden Makeover Tips When Selling Your Home

Outdoor areas are more than showpieces, they’re functional spaces where Australians love to spend time entertaining and relaxing. Given that lifestyle is top of mind for every buyer, it’s important to make your outdoor space as inviting as possible to all potential buyers. So, if you feel your garden could potentially benefit from a little makeover, then now is the time to do so, BEFORE you put your property on the market. A little effort will show off everything your property has to offer, while also ensuring you make a great first impression.

When buyers inspect a home, they’re looking for a place they can imagine themselves living in. So if your gardens are taken care of, a buyer can easily imagine themselves enjoying the inviting space.

Conversely, overgrown plants, spider webs and unruly lawns may cause them to wonder what else has been neglected around the property. So if you were thinking you could get away with just mowing the lawns, remember that it’s worth going the extra mile. Afterall, you want to ensure your property is presented in the best possible light in order to achieve the maximum sales price.

Our friends at The Small Garden often revamp gardens for homes ahead of sale. Husband and wife team, Tom and Carolynn Brooks see firsthand the impact these transformations have on the before and after valuations on numerous properties throughout Brisbane. “Gardens are an important part of the first impression buyers get when they arrive at a property.” Carolynn tells us, “For house buyers, outdoor space is incredibly important. We feel it’s really important that you improve your entrance to build anticipation from the moment a buyer sees it from the street. Well-tended gardens and outdoor living areas complete the picture of your home and the lifestyle it offers.”

Whether you have a house or an apartment, here are the basics we recommend you get right before listing.

  1. 1. Tips for House Sellers

For house buyers, outdoor space is incredibly important. Your first job is to improve your entrance to build anticipation from the moment a buyer sees it from the street. Remember if a buyer arrives early for an inspection or an auction is being held in your front yard, the entrance of your home has a very important role to play.

When preparing your outdoor areas, make sure you see to the following:

  • Wash all paths and clear away leaf debris
  • Clean your pool and any pool furniture
  • Style living areas using cushions, rugs and accessories
  • Hire outdoor furniture if yours is looking tired or is out of proportion with the space
  • Restain any decking
  • Ensure lawns are freshly mowed before an inspection
  • Replace any dead plants in the garden and mulch garden beds
  • Use pot plants to soften an entrance as well as built structures
  • Add structure and flow to a garden using paths
  • Show the versatility of large outdoor spaces by dividing them into dining and relaxation areas
  • Replace any tired features in your front yard, such as lights and letterboxes
  • Replace any sagging and tired shade cloth
  • Highlight focal points such as garden art or large trees
  1. 2. Tips for Apartment Sellers

When you have an apartment, your outdoor spaces may be limited, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have impact. That is because every square inch of space in an apartment matters – so if your outdoor areas feel like a natural extension of indoor living zones, buyers will see more value in the property.

Before listing your space, these are the easy ways to enhance the appeal of your balcony or courtyard:

  • Style your space by adding cushions, rugs and accessories to your outdoor setting
  • Hire outdoor furniture if yours is looking tired or is out of proportion with the space (and choose pieces that complement your interior styling)
  • Use pot plants to soften the entrance and other outdoor areas, such as a balcony
  • Create privacy by planting bamboo or a similar screening plant around your courtyard
  • Trim any dead foliage from your pot plants
  • Replace any chipped or damaged tiles and pavers
  • Clean your windows so the outdoor area is easily visible from inside
  • Hang an outdoor mirror in your courtyard to make it feel larger
  • Install bench seating to create storage and save space in your outdoor area
  1. 3. Getting Inspired

There’s a fine line when it comes to landscaping will appeals to a broad range of buyers. Touches like outdoor rugs and potted plants make a space more comfortable and liveable, but going overboard with colour and excessive finishes may overwhelm some buyers.

The homes below are a mix of The Small Garden’s projects and gardens from around the world, with each showcasing the ideal middle ground to aim for an different ways to lift a space.

  1. 4. Make a Low-Maintenance Statement

In these homes, two symmetrical pots draw attention to the entrance. The pots have also been carefully chosen to complement the overall aesthetic of the entrance and the building’s architecture, and add a touch of colour. The great thing about the simplicity of these entrances is that they are low maintenance, which will appeal to many buyers.


Garden Makeover The Small Garden
Images L to R via The Small Garden and Away in Style, Designer: Stuart Membery
  1. 5. Draw Attention To Key Features

As entrance gardens are typically small, a single focal point will have impact and leave a lasting impression. In these spaces, simple greenery and hedging adds presence to the sculptural elements without being overwhelming or distracting. In the Queenslander home, the plant beside the front door ensures there is continuity between the front garden and entry.

Garden Makeover The Small Garden
Images L to R via Glamour Drops, Designer: Sue Carr x Paul Bangay and The Small Garden



  1. 6. Take Cues From The Building’s Architecture

Think about the colours and detail in your home, and how you can mirror this style in your outdoor areas. In this garden, large concrete pads give prominence to the front entrance and bring the architectural lines of the house into the garden.

Garden Makeover The Small Garden
Image via Virginia Kerridge Architecture



  1. 7. General tips

Lifestyle and showing that your home is well cared for are the key things to keep in mind when preparing your outdoor spaces.

As a bare minimum, make sure you do the following before listing your home:

  • Trim back all plants and clear away any spider webs and fallen leaves
  • Add mulch to garden beds and pot plants
  • Soften your entrance using foliage
  • Ensure walkways aren’t blocked by outdoor furnishings
  • Use a high-pressure cleaner to wash down dirty paths and pavers
  • Don’t go overboard with new plants (or you may overwhelm the buyer)
  • Remove all clutter from outdoor spaces
  • Style outdoor living spaces as you would an indoor area
  • Consult a landscaper for advice on which works will actually add value


The Small Garden

Tom & Carolynn Brooks
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If you have a property in South East QLD that you would like to discuss with one of the team members at Calibre, then please feel free to call our office at (07) 3367 3411 or lodge a request for a “Property Appraisal” on our website.


Best Garden Makeover when selling

191 Musgrave Road,
Red Hill QLD 4059

07 3367 3411