Budget-Friendly Curb Appeal

Budget-Friendly Curb Appeal


Budget-Friendly Tips to Maximize Curb Appeal

We’ve all heard the term “You never get a second chance to make a first impression”. The same goes for the first impression a house makes. When a potential buyer pulls up out front, the first thing they notice is the curb appeal of the home.

Curb Appeal = First Impression

Whether it’s a property you’re flipping or your own home, there are inexpensive ways to dramatically enhance the curb appeal. There’s the standard no-brainers; mow the lawn, trim the hedges, make sure there isn’t trash in the gutter… you know, obvious things. But what else can you do to really add an extra little edge that’s going to make your home or project stand out from the other properties on the market? Zillow recently put out an article discussing some of the things you can do to get “maximum improvement for minimum cash”. Let’s dive into some of their tips!

  1. Clean up!

Like we mentioned earlier, this is pretty obvious… Trim the bushes, weed the flower bed, keep things tidy, but it goes beyond that. Use your hose on the strongest setting to clean off the driveway and sidewalks or take things one step further by power washing all of the exterior concrete. Don’t forget to clean the windows (inside and out!) and wash down/power wash the fences facing the street.

  1. Add Shutters!

Faux shutters are great for adding character to the exterior of a home. Shutters create the illusion that the windows are larger and they’re a great way to break up a large, otherwise kind of boring wall.

  1. Paint Accent Areas!

Instead of repainting the entire structure, just try painting the front door, trim and/or shutters a contrasting color. This tip will do wonders for your curb appeal, assuming you choose a flattering color scheme (ie- avoid bright pink gutters).

  1. Give Your Front Door A Face Lift!

A cool front door can set you back a good chunk of change. If you’re feeling adventurous, try going beyond simply painting by adding trim to the door. Also, don’t forget the power of a seasonal wreath or some greenery.

  1. Replace Your House Numbers!

Have you ever noticed how certain styles of house numbers can really age a home? Zillow provides alternatives to the traditional metal numbers, like painting a terra-cotta planter with the house number and setting it near the door or hanging the numbers on the stairs leading to the front porch. At NorCal Homes, we are a big fan of clean, modern looking house numbers finding that they are versatile and make the home look more “up-to-date”.

  1. Update Your Light Fixtures!

According to Zillow, this step is a must! I can’t say we necessarily disagree. The proper porch light can make a tremendous difference in the overall look of your home. When buying new fixtures, make sure they have the same mounting system as the previous lights to save yourself a whole lot of trouble. If your exterior light fixtures aren’t where you want to put your money, consider spray painting the existing ones.

Zillow’s final tip is more of a staging suggestion: Don’t overwhelm the front porch with furniture. Keep things simple and sparse. This allows the potential buyer to envision themselves, and their belongings, in the space as well as keeping the porch open, making it look larger. When we’re staging projects, we rarely put anything on the front porch.

Here are a few, final Quick Tips directly from the article:




  • Upgrade your mailbox. Install a new mailbox for under $100, or spray paint your existing mailbox.
  • Plant a tree. Make sure you know how large the tree will grow first, but planting a tree adds to your curb appeal for as low as $20.
  • Build a tree bench. Already have a tree you love in your front yard? Build a wraparound tree bench. Great for napping, picnicking, or just hiding exposed roots, a tree bench will just cost what you spend on boards and screws.
  • Install flower boxes. For around $20 each, flower boxes are a quick way to add some life and color to your house windows. If you don’t want to worry about installing flower boxes, try out a container garden in pots by your front porch.
  • Hide eyesores. Place a small lattice fence or side of paneling around your air conditioner to avoid an appliance eyesore and hide your trash bins behind a small fence or by building a garbage can shed. You can also hide your hose in a pot or storage bench.


What do you think? Do you think you’ll give any of these tricks a try? Let us know what you think in the comments section! ?


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