Curtain twitchers are behind a surge in demand for new garden furniture and above ground pools this summer, according to new research.
Households are expected to spend more than £600 each on average sprucing up the garden this year – with half this money often splashed out on cooling down in a pool.
At least a quarter of our money goes on barbecue sets and trying to impress the neighbours with entertaining. Much of the rest is spent on outdoor loungers, dining chairs and tables.
Leanne Fox, head of buying for house and gardens at Argos which carried out the research on how we spend our money, says: 'Searches are double what they usually are this summer for barbecues and sun loungers – while there has been a 300 per cent surge of interest in above ground splash pools.'
The report found that for half of us inspiration for making the outdoor space look better comes from looking out of the window or peering over the fence to admire a neighbour's well-tended garden.
Argos's biggest summer hits include a £90 gazebo to give shade from the sun and a £380 hanging egg chair. Those who want to cool off are spending around £300 on 12ft family-sized pools.
The garden isn't just a great place to relax for those on staycation: according to estate agent Sold.co.uk, investment in sprucing up the garden and buying outdoor furniture adds as much as 20 per cent to the value of a typical home.