A 2016 survey carried out by a major Australian home design and renovation website confirmed what we’ve suspected all along. Australians are falling out of love with their lawns. In the survey, 77% of respondents said easy maintenance was the highest priority on their outdoor wish list. To make this possible, 28% said they were looking to reduce the size of their lawns, while 6% said they were keen to get rid of their lawn altogether.
Another survey, conducted very recently by one of Australia’s lawn mowing companies, backed this up. It revealed that a third of Australians only mow their lawn once a month, with nearly one in five paying someone else to mow their lawn. 16.6% of those who took part in the survey said they only mow their lawns when absolutely necessary, while just 11% mowed the lawns once or more per week.
In other findings, 12.8% of Queenslanders mow their lawns at least once a week, so they’re the most fastidious in the country. Unlike South Australians who are trailing the field with only 8.3% of them mowing weekly. But what might be most interesting of all is the revelation that 33% of respondents did not have a lawn at all. This obviously reflects the increasing rate of urbanisation in Australia, with many people living in apartments instead of homes with yards (and lawns). But it also shows that those who do live in homes with yards are tearing up the lawns and replacing them with products they see as more functional to their lifestyle. Outdoor rooms and covered exterior spaces are just two of them.
Going back to our first survey, carried out by the Australian home renovation and design website, almost 80% of respondents who had completed an outdoor project in the past 12 months, said they now spent more time outdoors as a result. Most of them said this was what drove them to replace the lawns with a functional, modern outdoor room where they could entertain, dine and relax in a covered space outside.
As Australian blocks of land get smaller, so too do Australian homes. An outdoor room is a great way to add to the home’s liveable footprint however this might mean sacrificing some lawn to make way for decks or a patio. Grassed areas are commonly being replaced by decks, which are then cleverly covered by opening roofs with the sides closed in with products such as outdoor blinds or sliding glass doors. This creates something that looks like a room, feels like a room and performs the same function as a room. An Australian company specialising in such products says demand for what they sell and install is growing unabated – and they’re noticing that their outdoor rooms are replacing lawns in many cases.
The Australian love affair with the lawn is being retargeted towards enjoying the good life in our outdoor rooms that provide a functional space that lets you set and control conditions.