Maximising a Compact Yard in Red Beach, Orewa

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New decking and contrasting textures helped realise this underutilised backyard’s full potential in the coastal township of Red Beach.

Before After
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Getting Started

Even in a prime coastal location like Red Beach, homeowners still want to carve out a private oasis to enjoy being outside without having to leave home. But with section sizes shrinking across the greater Auckland region, the space to do so isn’t always available. 

Homeowners Dawn and Matt had a decent backyard to work with but didn’t feel as though it was being efficiently utilised. The couple reached out to local Zones Landscaping Consultant Sandy Lochhead to discuss their landscape makeover and potential ideas for the best ways to upgrade their space. 

Seeking Out Suggestions

Sandy and her in-house project manager Kyle worked closely with Dawn and Matt throughout the project, starting with a detailed briefing session. The homeowners weren’t entirely sure of the direction they wanted to go in but did have a rough budget of $20,000. 

Taking this into consideration, Kyle recommended a few options that would transform the backyard into an inviting space that could accommodate multiple entertaining areas while also offering seamless cohesion.  

The existing yard had a paver patio that didn’t fully extend, so a lot of the section was left underutilised. Dawn and Matt loved Kyle’s idea of creating an alfresco area that took full advantage of the space while also using existing elements like the louvre shelter to maximise indoor/outdoor flow.

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Quotes and Timeline

After reworking a few aspects of the scope and refining the details, Sandy provided Dawn and Matt with a $25,000 quote. Although this was slightly over what they originally hoped to spend, the design would allow them to completely customise the space so they were happy to proceed. 

Early meetings for the project took place in November and once the new year rolled around, everyone was eager to get started. Sandy and Kyle coordinated the building stage which ran smoothly except for one small hiccup with a supply partner. The projected timeline was about 10 days, but a slight delay from the paver supplier pushed the project to just over two weeks.  

A Private Patio

The building phase went smoothly and the finished backyard was delivered for $26,000 which included tipping fees and a variation added by Dawn and Matt. The majority of the backyard was covered in a new kwila decking but the corner section was a paver-and-pebble finish. Dawn and Matt opted to add secure access with a new gate outside of the original scope which incurred the extra costs. 

Matt and Dawn are rapt with their new outdoor living area which has really maximised their backyard. The stylish finish paired with the practical functionality has transformed the property. Already considering what’s next, Dawn and Matt are keen to invite Sandy and Kyle back, saying:

“Kyle, Sandy, and the team at Zones are top of their game! Extremely professional and communicative every step of the way. Have recommended to friends and will most definitely be working with them on our next project!”

This project was completed in
May 2023
Project description
Outdoor living area with new decking
New Zealand
Project duration
2 weeks
Cost estimate
Actual cost
Supply delays
Interesting aspects
Kwila decking
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Sandy Lochhead is Landscaping Consultant of Landscapes and Outdoor Living Limited, a franchisee of Zones Landscaping New Zealand, doing business in Rodney.

Kyle Lochhead is a Zones Landscaping Owner of Landscapes and Outdoor Living Limited, a franchisee of Zones Landscaping New Zealand, doing business in Rodney.

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