Hi y'all, Bama Here! Does the outside of your home need a little help? We all know first impressions are everything and an attractive exterior can make all the difference!
"So, how can I give the front of my house a facelift without breaking the bank?" Believe it or not, this is a question I get asked a lot, whether someone is looking to put his/her house on the market or just wants to give it some added personality. The truth is you've got to be willing to get dirty and do the majority of the work yourself if you want to save some cash. Let's be honest: your home's first impression can make or break a sale, so let's talk about some inexpensive changes you can do yourself.
Stand across the street or at the edge of your property line and take a good look at your home. Think of the exterior of your home much like a painting! You want it to be colorful, inviting, symmetrical and reflecting of your personality. Make a wish list of everything you would like to see changed, then pick a few things you can physically and financially do yourself. Here are my top five!
Step 1: Give your home a wash
One of the best things you could possibly do for the exterior of your home is pressure wash it. Your local hardware store should have a pressure washer available to rent for the day, and then you can make it rain. This is something you will need to do regardless if you're considering repainting the exterior of your home or not. The surface has to be clean before any new paint can be applied. Who knows, you might get lucky and not even need to paint after all the dirt is washed away. (While you're at it, don't forget to hit your drive way and walk ways with the pressure washer as well.)
Step 2: Shut The Front Door
Your entry way is the first thing your guests see, so why not make a statement? Give your house a little lipstick with a front door that has a blast of color. If your door is a little blah and can be painted, do it. Just be sure to assess whether or not old layers of paint need to removed before adding a new coat. You don't want all your hard work peeling right off at the first sign of moisture! Also, adding new hardware or polishing existing hardware can add that extra sparkle. Then finish it all off with a decorative door wreath that reflects your personality.
Step 3: Ilumination
Add to your home with low-voltage landscape lighting. This will not only provide an added layer of safety, but a decorative touch. Solar-powered fixtures are great, especially if you aren't able to use lights that require wiring. Need a path to light up? Visit your local hardware store and pick out some in-expensive paving stones to crate a path to your front door. You can usually pick-up lincoln pavers, depending on where you live for around $2 each.
Step 4: Trim
Give the front of your house a little eyeliner by adding shutters and accent trim. By adding accent trim to your windows and doors, you will notice how your home's features will really stand out.
Step 5: Install A Few Window Boxes & Add Seasonal Flowers
Whip your flower beds into shape by pruning any overgrowth, pulling weeds, adding fresh mulch, and planting seasonal flowers. Take a can of white temporary hair spray paint and mark out the desired shape of your flower beds. There is nothing in the decorating handbook that says you've got to have perfectly straight flower beds...be creative! I, personally, prefer to use brick or precast-concrete blocks to create the edges of my beds. When choosing flowers, mix it up. Include a variety of colors, sizes and textures to really make your flower beds sing. Just keep in mind when creating your new flower beds to choose features that will frame your home rather than obscure it.
All in all, a good rule of thumb is to try to stay on top of your home's periodic maintenance. It's the best way to catch any obvious defects, such as cracked or rotting material. By doing this, you can save your pocketbook from feeling the squeeze in the long run. Plus, it's always nice to come home and see how all your handwork has paid off.