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Pool with pale coloured decking and outdoor furniture
Renovating your home's exterior is a challenging project that thousands of Aussies tackle every year. We sat down with Glenn Buchanan and builder Rod Jones to discuss Glenn's ideas for a modern-look outdoor reno and how James Hardie products elevated the entire project.


Crafting Glenn's reno-vision

When his family made the decision to put in a pool, Glenn knew he had to reinvigorate his home's entire outdoor area along with it.

“I have young children who need to be supervised in the pool and I wanted an additional decking and seating area with a privacy screen – one that was comfortable but also looks great,” he says.

“We also love to entertain and wanted different ‘zones' in the backyard to achieve different objectives: eating, cooking, seating, relaxing.”

But Glenn also wanted to ensure any renovation aligned with the current style of his home.

“We really wanted the space to match the modern architectural style of our home, in neutral tones that wouldn't date. We also knew that the materials we selected for the decking and screening had to be hard-wearing and durable, as they are close to our pool.”

Pool surrounded by timber decking with a lounge chair

Inviting James Hardie to the outdoor party

That need for hard-wearing and durable materials put Glenn on a search for the ideal products, and it was a mixture of recommendations from friends and social media inspiration that led him to HardieDeck™ and Linea™ by James Hardie.

“HardieDeck is a great solution for areas around pools,” he says. “We didn't want all the constant maintenance hassles associated with timber decks, and we wanted confidence that our investment would last for the long run!

“The Linea weatherboard screen also ended up giving us much better privacy than other materials could, and it provides a visual connection to our home's cladding.”

Pool surrounded by timber decking with a pink chair

“HardieDeck's durability made it the obvious choice for this project. The lack of constant maintenance it requires met our client's brief perfectly. The installation is a simple procedure and for the style Glenn described, we knew it would be a perfect match” explains builder Rod Jones.

Bringing it all together for the finished product

The 2019–20 holiday season has been the Buchanan family's first chance to properly enjoy their newly renovated outdoor space – and Glenn says they couldn't be happier.

“This is the first summer we have been able to really use the space since the pool was finished and we are really happy with the end result,” he says.

“The modern decking can adapt to multiple looks, making it very easy for us to change our style as we adapt to the seasons.”

Glenn also says the outdoor space has positively impacted the rest of his family's home, with the long-term benefit of added value always in the back of his mind.

“It really feels like our house just got a whole lot bigger. Our new outdoor room is such a practical, usable space. I can watch the kids while they play and swim, and also know that the additional living spaces will add a lot more value to our property when we decide to sell.”

Pool surrounded by timber decking with two chairs and a firepit

Rod's top three tips for creating an outdoor space

1. Choose the right product

The wrong product can destroy any renovation, particularly when you're dealing with outdoor weather conditions! The durability and low-maintenance of HardieDeck and Linea made them the obvious choice for this project. You want to create a space to enjoy, not to maintain!

2. Think creatively about space

We don't all have large outdoor spaces to work with, but that doesn't mean we can't come up with great solutions! Talk with your builder about how you can utilise what's available. Consider sectioning off areas with a weatherboard barrier for privacy, or adding decking to flatten out a steep hill.

3. Think about all seasons

Plan for winter as well as summer. Your outdoor space will be used (hopefully) year-round so think about how you can make the most out of it in all conditions. The weatherproof nature of James Hardie products helps make your maintenance life much easier!

Take your outdoor project to the next level

Check out the full James Hardie range to see how HardieDeck and Linea products can elevate your outdoor reno project!


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More D.I.Y. Advice

Health & Safety

Asbestos, lead-based paints and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber are health hazards you need to look out for when renovating older homes. These substances can easily be disturbed when renovating and exposure to them can cause a range of life-threatening diseases and conditions including cancer. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page.

When following our advice in our D.I.Y. videos, make sure you use all equipment, including PPE, safely by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Check that the equipment is suitable for the task and that PPE fits properly. If you are unsure, hire an expert to do the job or talk to a Bunnings Team Member.