It is unfortunate but true that both you and your home will be constantly judged by the curb appeal of your property. An untidy, disorganized front yard casts a negative impression, but a colorful, well-planned front yard practically shouts that this is a much-loved home and a valuable piece of property.
Spending some time, effort and money to create the best possible first impression can add thousands of dollars to your asking price when you are ready to sell your property. On the other hand, it feels good to live in a home that looks as attractive on the outside as it does on the inside. Your neighbors will appreciate your efforts as well, not for just the aesthetics but for your contribution to the overall value of the community. The following ideas are affordable ways to use color to step up your curb appeal:
Your front door should be the most obvious focal point for your home. Painting the front door a bold, bright color is an easy way to draw attention to it. Then you can repeat the color more subtly in other areas for a cohesive, planned look. Bright peacock blue or striking red are popular choices, but oranges and greens can work too as long as you avoid looking garish. If you front door is rather non-descript, consider painting the molding around it the same color to make a larger statement. You can also match the light fixtures, your mailbox, nearby urns and house lettering. Just centralize this color for the most impact. A coordinating seasonal wreath or swag will make the perfect finishing touch.
If you are fortunate enough to have a front porch, don't just use it to store your sports equipment. Add some brightly painted outdoor chairs with plump cushions and perhaps an inviting porch swing. Some well-placed foliage plants or container plantings can add more color and interest to your outdoor living space. Pottery Barn sells colorful, inviting "welcome" mats that can add another pop of color.
Window boxes are an easy and inexpensive way to bring colorful flowers up close and personal. Paint the boxes to match one of the house colors, or choose a bold color with its own personality. Just remember that the front of your home should only have three main colors: one for the body of the house, one for the trim and a small amount of the third for a striking accent. Fill your boxes with a variety of annuals and change out with the seasons.
Consider blooming shrubbery to hide unsightly architectural features or to add color around an otherwise bland foundation. Red or purple rhododendrons are great for this purpose and flower for a longer season than some other plantings. While you are looking at your foundation, how about adding real or manufactured stone for color, texture and architectural interest?
Dress up your walkway with bursts or flowers, fresh mulch, decorative stones and healthy green foliage plants. Add an arbor or fence panels for even more impact. Paint them to match one of the house colors for a coordinated appearance.
Staining concrete is a great way to add color to dull walkways, patios and driveways. Both Butterfield Staining Systems and Direct Colors Concrete Acid Stains are available in a variety of appealing colors such as Azure Blue, Sea Grass and English Red. This is a DIY project that offers a lot of impact.
Adding color to boost the curb appeal of your home is a simple way to improve the value of your property and win points with the neighbors. With a little planning, you can have one of the most attractive properties on the block, and you can say with pride, "I did it myself."