Ready to tackle some yard work? Watch Backyard Builds

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HGTV premieres their new series Backyard Builds Thursday, April 6 at 10 p.m.  The eight-episode series, shot mainly in and around the GTA, arrives just as Canadian yards awaken from another winter slumber. I asked hosts Sarah Keenleyside and Brian McCourt what is the first thing home owners should do to try and get their yards in shape:

“If you’re going to put money into it, take some photos of it at its worst,” said Keenleyside, a Toronto-based interior designer seen in the past giving tips on Steven and Chris. “Do some spring cleaning to see what you’re working with.”

“Check the slope of the backyard to make sure it slopes away from the house,” says McCourt, a contractor with 13 years experience as a renovation specialist. “If you have the space it doesn’t mean you should start building right away. First make sure you have the right canvas to work from, then start planning what you want to do.

Grading’s important they both stress. “Once you build, you can’t grade after that,” adds McCourt. “Do things in the right order and you’re not going to have to re-do things later on.”

The two Ottawa-natives tackle projects ranging from backyard office solutions to building outdoor theatres and treehouses on budgets ranging from $20,000 up to $100k. Read more about Backyard Builds here at this feature I wrote for The Canadian Press.

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