The terra-cotta-stained concrete floor stays cool, while two large fans create a breeze in the 20-foot-wide, 7-foot-deep space. Limestone pavers make a rustic walkway that leads to wide, welcoming steps. Aida also planted drought-resistant plants such as zoysiagrass and ginger out front. "People do a long stare when they pass by," she says. "I'm really proud of it."
What's it worth? A well-kept yard with lush, low-maintenance landscaping and a new sprinkler system that will last up to 25 years can bring great returns. Homeowners should expect to recoup up to 300 percent of their cost if they sell.