Expert advice for curb appeal projects you can do yourself
The exterior of your home leaves a first impression on everyone who passes by or visits. But if your home’s curb appeal isn’t all that appealing, it can be visually unimpressive. Whether you were trying to sell your house or if you just want it to look better, there are projects you can do that aren’t extremely expensive or difficult. Even experienced DIYers need a little help. That’s why we turned to home improvement and tool expert Beth Allen for advice on affordable DIY projects that take a home’s curb appeal to a whole new level. As the founder of HIP Chicks (Home Improvement Project Chicks), Allen offers project ideas and tips that will make your home look impressive at first glance.
Benefits of improving curb appeal
Creating curb appeal may seem simple, but Allen reminds readers that it offers several key benefits. It starts with keeping a tidy porch and entryway. It makes the area welcoming, she says.
It is also economically smart to improve the facade of a house. Real estate agents always stress the value of curbside appeal, but Allen said it goes beyond that. “There is always this financial benefit when selling your home. But we’ve all heard of this broken window philosophy: when a broken window in a neighborhood happens and everyone ignores it, the neighborhood starts to deteriorate,” she said. “If you keep your home in good shape, it sends a message to everyone around you that you care about your space, you care about your community. It uplifts everyone.
While it takes some motivation to tackle engaging DIY projects, Allen said there are physiological benefits to doing such tasks. Home repairs and beautification also give homeowners a sense of control and security, she added.
Clean the porch and the entrance
Before starting any porch project, the area should be clean. “The cleaning of the porch and the entrance is enormous. Obtain a pressure washer – or just the garden hose – to knock down cobwebs. Scrub the siding with a brush to get rid of mold and mildew. Clean your light fixtures to get rid of bugs and dust,” Allen said.
Invest in essential DIY tools
Some sidewalk projects are fairly simple, but others require tools. “There’s just the wide range of things that every owner needs, and it depends on your skills, your ambition, your wallet, all of those things,” Allen advised. She recommends buying a toolbox and stock it with essential tools, such as a hammer, tape measure, wrench, screwdriver set, and needle-nose pliers. While most power tools are best for larger projects and those with construction skills, Allen said a power drill is a must for most DIYers.
DIY curb appeal projects
Some DIY projects require more skill than others. Allen said small changes, such as adding decorative flower pots and a new doormat, look great, but are easy and inexpensive.
Painting the front door requires minimal skill but makes a big difference. Allen said choosing the right paint is essential for great results. “Do you have a lot of sun at your doorstep? Is your door exposed to the weather because you don’t have a porch? Is your door made of wood? Is your door made of steel? Allen said these are factors to consider when choosing door paint.
Sidewalk curb appeal projects that require a bit more skill but are totally doable include updating the front door hardware, adding a peephole and slot boxes, replacement of address numbers and installation of a new mailbox.
Think about security
Not only does outdoor lighting add curb appeal, it also improves safety. Solar lights and landscape lights are good choices, Allen advised. Lights that work automatically with built-in sensors look great and can deter would-be thieves. “Some have a dusk-to-dawn photocell, or they have motion detection so that also provides security,” Allen said. “A well-lit house is less attractive to a burglar than a dark house.”
Whether you have a dog or not, placing a large bowl near your entrance or installing dog signs are also deterrents.
Ideas for Apartment Dwellers
Improving the curb appeal of an apartment makes it welcoming and comfortable. Tenants have limited options, and Allen noted that nothing that could permanently damage or alter the structure should be used. “Go with a new doormat,” she suggested. “You can hang a nice piece of architecture outside your apartment or next to your entryway. Change a crown; bring out something simple (seasonal or not).
What to buy for DIY curb appeal projects
The Intellibulb Dawn to Dusk saves energy and adds security to the exterior of your home, thanks to the built-in sensor that automatically turns it on when the sun goes down. It also turns off during the day.
This quality set from DeWalt is packed with durable bits and nuts to tackle many DIY jobs around the house. The sturdy case keeps all 70 pieces neatly organized, and it’s easy to store and transport.
Lighting your entryway on demand is effortless with these motion-activated outlets that automatically turn lights on when motion is detected by the sensors. You get two plugs for the price.
Sold by Amazon
When extra power is needed to do a DIY job, a drill/driver will come in handy. The Ryobi ONE+ comes with a lithium-ion battery, charger, 40 versatile bits, and a well-designed storage case.
Sold by Home deposit
Not only does this mat have an attractive design, but it also features a rubber backing that keeps it in place. It is constructed with weather-resistant materials that hold up well to the elements and heavy foot traffic.
Sold by Wayfair
This kit contains essential tools that will come in handy for DIY projects. It includes a hammer, pliers, tape measure, hex keys, screwdrivers and more.
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These metal dog signs are stylish and functional as they have an attractive font that alerts visitors to your furry friend. You will receive two signs per order.
Sold by Amazon
Updating a front door is easy with this complete lockset that includes a deadbolt and sleek handle. It is available in several attractive finishes.
Sold by Home deposit
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