Top Ten Ways to Improve Curb Appeal
Scoping out the market for a new home is one of the most research-heavy milestones of our lives. After visiting neighborhood after neighborhood, you finally find a house that meets all of your requirements. Unfortunately, the one you love is either way out of your price range or snatched up by another eager future homeowner.
As you continuously keep searching, you start losing faith you’ll find the right place for you. Everything your real estate agent tries to sell you on is either too big or too small. Or perhaps you have a severe case of Goldilocks syndrome keeping you from choosing one to stick with.
By some miracle, you finally find a home that’s right for you. It’s a little bit of a fixer-upper, but as you envision its potential, you find yourself more and more excited to move in. Without a second thought, you pull together an offer, go back to your apartment (which now pales in comparison), and pray for a callback with good news.
Days pass and you finally get the update you’ve been waiting for! A few signed documents and approved bank loans later, you’re all moved in and ready to work on your new home. Most people spend this time fixating on personalizing every inch of the interior. But if you’re going to have the “American dream” house, it’s got to include the curb appeal to go with it.
We’ve pulled together ten of the best ways to improve your curb appeal. Read on to learn how to make your home the welcoming beauty you want it to be.
A lawn is a home for some of our most cherished memories (like barbecues, ball games, fall afternoons raking leaves, etc). The lawn is one of the first things a passerby notices about your house and deserves to be given quality consideration and upkeep.
Proper lawn care is one of the easiest ways to improve curb appeal. A freshly mowed lawn and a few potted plants can make a world of difference. And it doesn’t even require a back-breaking budget to pull off. Lawn upkeep (like mowing the grass, removing weeds, and infrequently watering the yard) can cause a significant improvement. In fact, plant lovers can even take it a step further by setting up an outdoor succulent stand or by adding flowers near the doorway.
If you’re looking for a little more style and security for your property, lining your yard with an elegant, long-lasting fence might add to your curb appeal. Beautifully styled fences can show off your home while providing your pets and loved ones with an extra sense of security. Fencing comes with many options on materials, including vinyl, ornamental wrought iron, chain link fencing, and more.
Fences can be decorated with flowers to add a storybook element to your yard. They can be personalized based on height, color, and material to match your home’s vibe. With some fences, gardening projects are well protected from hungry rabbits searching for a prized vine-ripe tomato to snack on. And choosing the right fence can add a splash of character to your house without hiding all the hard work you put into your lawn.
Grime and mold have a way of hiding in the hardest places to reach. Those little nooks and crannies on your siding or front porch that never get to see the light of day carry a lot of filth. And without realizing it, we get used to the darkened wood or vinyl until the mess is bad enough to be addressed.
With so many tasks on the top of our list of things to do, the porch and siding are often the last things that get prioritized. However, a little pressure washing can make them look brand new, pairing nicely with a freshly mowed lawn.
An afternoon with these handy tools can send the dirt gliding off your porch or siding — leaving nothing but a gleaming surface behind. Consistent maintenance can also provide you with a blank canvas for decorating. There are a million ways to decorate your entryway with wreaths, signs, a porch swing or porch chairs, and a side table (if there’s enough room).
Pressure washing can also be used to polish up your driveway. We forget our driveways are constantly battered by changing weather or darkened from the dirt on our car tires or oil leaks. Our little cleaning helpers can fix the mess in a jiffy with a few heavy sprays. And a gleaming driveaway complements all of the hard work put into improving your yard.
A New Door
The door is one of the best accessories to highlight the outer beauty of your home. A door complements the color of the brick or siding, pairs with all the window panes, and can add a little contrast to earthier tones. As the main portal to your home, the front door has to heighten the aesthetic. It’s the one part of the exterior visitors interact with the most.
A new door comes with the promise of bright new styles, vibrant colors, and a variety of different designs. If the rest of your house is bland, a little pop of color could do wonders to a neutral tone. If you’ve got a bolder color scheme going on, a woodier door could accent it quite nicely. Don’t be afraid to get creative with material, frames, and patterns.
Similar to the door, the windows can make or break the look of your house. Something as simple as a panel of glass can transform your curb appeal through a little customization. You can add personality to your property by adjusting the style, shape, size, and frame of your windows. You can change the color of the shutters and add a grille to match a newly refurbished door and front porch.
Sometimes our window sills are lonely and in desperate need of a window box for company. Try adding some to the bottom-floor windows with multicolored flowers in each one. This is also an easy way to fill up your weekend with a creative project that complements any existing flower bushes. And if you’re feeling extra adventurous, add new curtains and blinds onto the list of home improvements.
Lighting for the exterior of your home is a great way to make it stand out and improve security. It also makes it easier for leisure activities during the summer, like reading outside under the stars. We always remember the houses with the best jack o’ lanterns for Halloween or the ones with the most festive holiday lights in December. While there’s no need to have those decorations regularly, it goes to show that a little extra lighting can leave a lasting impression.
There are tons of lighting tips and tricks to try out for your home, like:
- Adding LED options to your porch
- Highlighting your walkway
- Lining your bushes with warm lighting
- Adding string lights during the holiday season
- Decorating your porch with modern lanterns (depending on the aesthetic of your home)
- Adding lights to your trees, using them as a focal point
But remember to consider what type, triggers, and fixtures you want for your lighting. It’s recommended you use LED lights with a built-in time setting for when they turn on and off throughout the night. And it doesn’t hurt to double-check for steady light fixtures with bulbs that are durable in most weather conditions.
Symmetry (Balanced Proportions)
Symmetry is a powerful tool that’s useful for emphasizing certain focal points and adding a more personalized element to your design choices. You can greatly improve your house’s entire outdoor look with just a little bit of attention to detail. For example:
- You can consider adding potted plants beneath two light fixtures on either side of your door.
- You can pick shutters with a certain whimsical pattern or complementary shape to them.
- If your house has an arched doorway, you can pick windows that match its shape.
Make a practice of decorating the exterior and taking steps out into the street to see what the overall picture looks like. Think about what you can move around, what you can add, and what kind of updates can match the aesthetic you’re striving for.
Have you ever read about a cobblestone pathway in a storybook and imagined fairytale characters walking down them toward their adventures? We can capture a little bit of that magic in our daily lives by transforming the pathway leading to our doorstep into something whimsical. There are many creative approaches you can take to transforming your pathway, like a pebble mosaic, symmetrical stone patterns, a garden path with motion-sensitive lights, etc.
You can also customize your pathway with soft gaps — Irish moss filled in between the spaces of a delicately placed footpath of flagstone paving stones. Or you can get extra creative and add cobblestone diamonds laid into a lattice for a more beachside vibe. You can even consider using leafy stepping stones, wood walkways, cobblestone borders, a checkerboard theme, or anything else that matches your home to improve curb appeal.
Remember the Pixar movie “Up”? I think we all cherish the moment where Carl and Ellie began decorating their home as newlyweds and decide to design their mailbox together with painted handprints. A simple white mailbox, a few pops of color, an elegant font, and a loving moment shared between two charming characters were all we needed to see to kickstart their journey. Similar to our beloved Ellie, it’s worth taking an artistic DIY approach for your own worn-out mailbox.
Everything old has the potential to be made into something new. And with the right eye, you can create an incredible piece on a low budget. All you truly need is a Pinterest board, a few paint supplies, attention to detail, and a little imagination before you get started. Painting doesn’t have to be your forte for you to decorate your mailbox into something beautifully unique.
Removing clutter from your yard seems fairly self-explanatory. But sometimes scheduling time for it is easier said than done. While you’re raking up leaves during the fall months, it might help to take some extra time removing any yard tools, old garden ornaments, or debris on your lawn. Little things can add to the overall appearance, like:
- Hiding away a garden hose in a pot or a hose holder until its ready for use
- Trimming shrubs, trees, and vines
- Camouflaging utility meters by painting them to match their surroundings
- Repainting the trim or fascia as weather causes the material to dull, chip, or crack
Cleanup is a daunting task we often like to put off, and for good reason as there aren’t many enjoyable things about it. But paying a little extra attention to finer details can complete your home’s entire look.
Call Northland Fence for a Free Estimate
If you’re looking to get started on improving your curb appeal, Northland Fence can help you pick out the perfect chain link, vinyl, or ornamental wrought iron fence with a 10-year labor warranty and a 15-year to lifetime warranty on materials, depending on the material. Visit our website to learn more about decorative metal fencing and privacy fence ideas to add a little extra style and protection to your property. Or call us today at (763) 316-4881 for a free estimate.
How can I increase my curb appeal fast?
There are a lot of ways to improve your property’s curb appeal. For example, the following are all easy, cost-efficient ways to improve your home’s aesthetic.
- Caring for your lawn
- Adding new fencing
- Pressure washing your porch, driveway, siding, and shingles
- Customizing your windows
- Focusing on symmetry
How do I upgrade curb appeal?
Upgrading your curb appeal depends on your budget. For example, renovations like new doors, windows, and lighting are great ways of improving your home. However, it can add up on costs depending on style, pattern, and preference. There are, of course, simpler cost-effective ways of upgrading your curb appeal, such as keeping your lawn mowed and your yard free of clutter.
How do you increase curb appeal on a budget?
You can take on a few cost-efficient ways to upgrade your curb appeal. For example, customizing your mailbox, adding potted plants, and keeping up with general cleanup are all budget-conscious ways to keep your home looking good.