If you’ve spent even five minutes watching home improvement shows, then you already know that a home’s appearance or its curb appeal is a big deal.
Some estimates suggest that homeowners can receive a return on investment of well over 150 percent when they put money into their home’s curb appeal, although it’s hard to put an exact number on it because curb appeal can be somewhat subjective. Check out the topics this article will cover:
- 10 Simple Ways to Increase Your Home’s Value
- What is Curb Appeal? Why is it Important?
- Increase Your Property Value with a New Garage Door
10 Simple Ways to Increase Your Home’s Value
If you’re on a budget — and who isn’t these days — you want the best home improvements to increase value without emptying your wallet in the process. Curb appeal on a budget is possible if you know what you’re doing. Sprucing up your home’s exterior is one of the less expensive home improvements you can make. Here’s how to start:
1. Give Your House a Good Wash
Don’t underestimate the power of a clean exterior. Washing your house from top to bottom will uncover the beauty that’s been caked in dirt. Whether you use soapy water and a long-handled brush or you hire a power washing company to tackle the job, going over the siding, garage door, windows, shutters, front door and walkways will uncover your home’s beauty, as well as help you evaluate what areas may need more help. Washing your house before it goes on the market can add as much as $10,000 to $15,000 to the sale price.
2. Spruce up Your Landscape
You don’t need to have a green thumb to trim bushes and mow the grass. Once those basics are out of the way, take a look around. Tackle bare spots in the lawn with some fertilizer and grass seed. Get rid of sickly or dead bushes and plants that are taking up space in the yard. If your flower beds need some TLC, consider adding in some flowers or hearty, drought-resistant plants for an eye-catching look that won’t break the bank or require a lot of maintenance.
3. Give Your Entry a Makeover
Tackling your home’s entrance is a great way to pump some life back into your exterior. Clean and polish locks and hardware. Want to add some fresh accents? Consider painting the front door, replacing your old welcome mat, the house numbers or even your porch light with newer options. If you can’t spend much money, hang a wreath on the door and add some potted plants.
4. Replace Your Front Door
Yes, it’s easy to add a coat of paint, but if your front door is old or warped, it may be time to replace it altogether. This will enhance your home’s curb appeal and can also improve your home’s security and energy efficiency — two features that will impress potential buyers who come through that door.
5. Replace Your Garage Door
Just like you put a lot of thought into making your front door and entryway welcoming and appealing, your garage door deserves some attention too. Depending on the size of your garage, the door can account for nearly one-third of your home’s exterior. That’s a lot of curb appeal all tied up into one feature. For a garage door in good condition, all you need to do is clean off the door and possibly consider refinishing it if the current stain or paint is old or faded.
If your door is old and beyond repair, consider replacing it with an eye-catching new option. Today’s garage doors are made in a variety of styles and materials that will fit any home design or budget, so there’s sure to be one that’s perfect for your home.
6. Add Some Color and Visual Appeal
A tasteful pop of color in the yard can go a long way in drawing attention to your home’s finer features. Line a walkway with some brightly-colored flowers. Add a nice bench onto the porch or a pair of Adirondack chairs in the yard. Hang a small set of wind chimes nearby. Subtle pops of color can brighten up your home’s exterior and draw a potential buyer’s eyes to its positive features.
7. Repair the Driveway
Replacing a driveway is an expensive update, but you may not need to replace the entire thing. If your driveway is cracked or damaged in spots, repair the damaged areas and consider giving it a makeover by staining it or adding sections of flagstones in the broken areas. If you’re feeling especially ambitious, consider expanding the width of your driveway by adding pavers along either side.
8. Upgrade Your Walkways
While we’re on the subject, your driveway may not be the only thing that needs some TLC. Assess your walkways — especially the one leading to your front door — and consider whether they need to be repaired or updated. If you want to make a statement, consider replacing a concrete walkway with brick or stone pavers. For a less dramatic statement, try resurfacing the old walkway and then edging it with pavers.
9. Add a Fence
If you already have a fence, repair any posts that have become broken or damaged, as well as any latches that aren’t properly secured. Also, make sure to include the fence on your list of exterior features to clean.
If you don’t have a fence already, you might want to consider having a picket fence installed. Besides creating a beautiful visual impact in a yard, a fence that’s in good condition can benefit you during a home appraisal and increase your property’s value if you live in a neighborhood that tends to attract families.
10. Fix up What You Already Have
All the paint and landscaping in the world won’t hide a home that’s in disrepair. The easiest way to increase curb appeal is to repair and maintain what is already in place. Rehang sagging gutters — or replace them if needed. Touch up paint that’s peeling or faded. Repair broken shutters. Mow the lawn. Fix that broken step. Show you care about your home.
What Is Curb Appeal? Why Is It Important?
Curb appeal includes landscaping, paint colors, the front door, the driveway and anything else that contributes to your home’s overall exterior appearance.
The best ways to make the front of your house look good will depend on the style of your home. Every house looks different, and the characteristics that appeal to one person don’t always appeal to another. But, the general rule of thumb when you’re looking to increase curb appeal is that your home’s exterior should look like a photograph in a magazine — green grass, well-maintained landscaping, tasteful paint colors and a well-maintained sidewalk and driveway.
Curb appeal is important because first impressions can make or break the sale of a home. When you focus on curb appeal, you’re focusing on how to make your house worth more. One survey of interior designers and real estate agents listed curb appeal as one of the top five most valuable improvements to increase your home’s chances of selling. Curb appeal can also have a significant impact on whether a potential buyer sees enough value in your home to offer the price you want.
Increase Your Property Value With a New Garage Door
We mentioned it before, but it bears repeating — your garage door takes up a considerable portion of the exterior of your home. If your garage door is broken, faded or dented, it’s going to impact your home’s overall appearance negatively. If you’re going through all the time and effort to improve your home’s exterior and increase your home’s property value, don’t overlook an old garage door.
When you’re changing the front of your house, here’s what a new garage door can do:
1. Restore Your Home’s Original Beauty
If you live in an older home, the garage door may have seen many transitions over the years as new designs and materials became available and new colors of stain were applied. Selecting a garage door that matches the original style of your home is a great way to restore the original look and architecture of the entire exterior.
When you choose doors that complement your home’s design rather than detract from it, you immediately add curb appeal. A beautiful garage door set into a beautiful home is going to enhance all of the other exterior improvements you choose to make.
2. Balance the Look
You put a lot of time and attention into how your front door looks. Maybe you painted it another color, hung a wreath or framed it with plants. Whatever you did, it probably took way more time and attention than most people put into their garage door. But the truth is that selecting a garage door which coordinates with your front door can create balance and tie your exterior design together in an eye-catching and appealing way. This balance can create a great first impression for potential buyers.
3. Create Contrast
Sometimes people paint their garage doors to match their siding, with the intention of trying to make the doors blend in with the rest of the house. Here’s the thing — garage doors don’t blend in. A beautiful garage door is meant to stand out and enhance the overall look of a home. When you’re selecting a new garage door, choose colors and designs that complement and balance the look of your home. For example, if you have a dark stained wooden front door, consider installing wooden garage doors in a similar shade to tie the design together.
The catch to this is if your front door is a bright color. For example, if your front door is teal, you shouldn’t paint your garage door teal as well. If your front door color isn’t one that would work well in a large size, then stick to a traditional white garage door.
How to Add Front Door Curb Appeal
If you’re in the market for a new front door, this is a great time to consider ways to use a new door to improve your home’s curb appeal. Replacing your entry door is a relatively inexpensive way to add value to your home. When you’re looking for a new door, you need to look for one that is both stylish and durable to increase your home’s curb appeal and keep your home warm and safe.
Two popular options on the market today are doors made from fiberglass or steel. Fiberglass doors, such as these Craftsman-Style Fiberglass Entry Doors can mimic the look and feel of a traditional wood door, but they have the strength and durability of modern manufactured materials. Fiberglass doors are a great option when you live in an area with harsh weather because they hold up well against the elements.
If you opt for a steel door, you can still customize the look you want, making a statement with the glass you choose, as well as extras like coordinating garage door windows and transoms. There are many attractive options on the market if you’re looking at steel doors, but steel doors are the go-to option if you’re looking for durability above anything else.
Besides deciding on the material you want to use, you’ll want to make sure you select a front door that coordinates well with your garage door. As we mentioned before, balancing the exterior look of your home is important to improving the overall curb appeal of your house. So, make sure that you select a door that complements your existing garage door in both style and color.
If it’s possible for them to match without being an eyesore — such as a wood-stain color for the front door that matches the garage — then matching is the way to go. If matching isn’t an option, then select a front door color that will go well with the existing garage door. It should also be a color that coordinates with the rest of the exterior.
Let Garage Door Specialists, Inc. Help
Selecting a garage door or entry door to complement your home and increase curb appeal can be a challenge, especially as you wade through all the options on the market today. Let Garage Door Specialists, Inc. walk you through the process and replace your garage doors, front door or any other exterior door on your home. As a Clopay® Authorized Dealer, we are proud to offer a wide variety of Clopay doors and products. Our experienced design specialists can offer recommendations and guidance on how to select a door to coordinate with your home’s architecture, as well as its existing colors and design.
As a family-owned and operated business serving the northern suburbs of Chicago, we’re here to help you create the curb appeal you need. With more than 30 years in the business, we are proud to continue to offer a variety of high-quality looks and styles that are both beautiful and functional.
Let us help you increase the curb appeal of your home. If you’re in the market for a new garage door or you’re ready to make your front entry shine, visit our showroom in Wheeling, Ill., or contact us today at 847-537-6662.