9 Simple Exterior Upgrades to Boost Curb Appeal on a Budget
Get more bang for your buck with high-impact projects that will boost your home’s curb appeal. These simple exterior updates will be sure to add interest to your home without a great big price tag.
Light Up Pathways
Curb appeal at night is just as important as during the day. To beef up your home’s nighttime game, consider highlighting pathways and trees with landscape lighting. Not only will this improve safety, it can also create significant dramatic effects for after-dark appeal. New solar landscape lighting options allow you to “go green” outdoors and save on energy.
Fresh Accent Colors
If you happen to be repainting the exterior of your home, use the opportunity to inject fresh colors or add an accent color to the color scheme. But be sure to paint test patches before deciding on a color — some colors may look good on a sample card, but prove too intense on a home.
Invest in Trees
Incorporating small ornamental trees into your landscape is a worthwhile investment if you’re planning on selling the house soon. Consider fast-growing species such as redbud, flowering pear, river birch, Japanese maple or pagoda dogwood. These will add interest to your landscape quickly, without taking years to get established. If you’re not selling the home, think long-term — oaks, maples, or other big and strong species suitable for your area.
Dressed Up Windows
Budget-friendly solutions can be used to increase the curb appeal of your windows. For example, installing shutters or painting the trim to create playful contrast are great ways to dress up windows lacking character. Also, window boxes filled with attractive foliage can bring your home’s exterior to life.
Prefab Arbor or Trellis
For a quick and easy exterior design solution that won’t break the bank, try using an arbor or trellis to help structure your front yard and complement your landscape plantings. Train a flowering vine to grow up the structure for a beautiful living wall effect. Make this idea even more budget-friendly by building your own trellis.
Give your plain concrete walkway a refresh and inject some character into your home’s exterior. Consider installing brick edging, or give the walkway a playful touch by applying a colorful concrete stain to the surface. Not only is this a budget-friendly boost, it’s a way to transform your driveway, front entry or garden path in a hurry.
Bring the Lawn to Life
One of the least-expensive improvement ideas to increase curb appeal, a healthy lawn only requires two simple steps:
- Invest in a weed-and-feed treatment to ensure the grass has the soil nutrients it needs and isn’t competing with the weeds for nourishment.
- Have your lawnmower blades sharpened regularly and cut the grass using one of the mower’s tallest settings.
If you find your lawn is too far gone — unhealthy or choked with weeds — consider having new sod installed. Simply remove the old lawn completely, lay the new sod, and then water it really well for a few weeks.
Increase Porch Appeal
Create a simple and inviting outdoor space out of a decent-sized front porch by using furniture and accessories. Add a cozy porch swing, a comfy bench, or a pair of chairs to relax in — all of these choices are a good foundation to build upon for social gatherings or your own personal relaxation time. Just remember to keep the porch clutter-free and open for guests.
Enhance Garage Door
A big part of curb appeal is an attractive garage door. Explore your options and find one that complements the style of your home. For instance, sectional doors can feature windows in the top panel, and some high-end options mimic traditional carriage-house doors. If a new garage door is not possible, consider adding character to your existing garage door with new lighting or by refreshing it with a coat of paint.