Angie’s List: How can I improve curb appeal?
You only get one chance to make a first impression, and your home’s first look makes a big difference. Whether you’re trying to sell your home or make a splash in the neighborhood, curb appeal plays a big role in your home’s value. Here are five effective ways to boost your home’s curb appeal this spring.
1. CLEAN THE EXTERIOR
The first step to achieving great curb appeal is to start with a clean hose. Power washing the exterior is a great way to remove accumulated dirt, grime and moss. Clean the windows and make sure they’re all clear and sparkling. If you can’t reach them all, consider hiring a pro to help. Get into the gutters and the roofline to remove all dirt, leaves and branches.
2. REPAIR MASONRY
If your home’s masonry is showing signs of age, it may be time to call out an expert to repair or restore it to its original pristine glory. Concrete, stucco and brick masonry often be restored without major disruption to household activities. These repair services can also protect against continuing water damage due to cracks or gaps.
For exterior stone walls, keeping them in good repair will ensure the beauty and elegance of your home’s landscaping. Adding a fireplace, barbecue pit or a new brick or stone walking path will make outdoor living more enjoyable.
3. REPLACE OR REFINISH THE DRIVEWAY
A well-maintained driveway can create an inviting and appealing first impression. Cracks, weeds and other damage can significantly diminish its appeal, so replacing or repairing your driveway can make a major difference in your home’s curb appeal.
Replacing your existing driveway with a new concrete drive can create a fresh, updated look for your home. For asphalt driveways, resurfacing is essential in order to maintain its integrity and prevent further damage. If your driveway is already showing small cracks or signs of settling, it may be time to apply a new coat of asphalt sealer.
4. IMPROVE OUTDOOR LIGHTING
Outdoor lighting can create powerful visual and functional impact. Highlighting the entrance to your house with a post light is a great place to start. All too often, the walkway leading to the house entrance is not illuminated, establishing a feeling of uncertainty when traversing the area.
The power of light has the ability to highlight the texture of the walkway and provide a welcoming feeling after dusk. A carefully placed light post adjacent to the walkway illuminates the immediate area and provides a structural element to your front-yard landscaping ideas.
5. MAKE OVER YOUR MULCH
A fresh bed of mulch tidies up the look of your yard in a hurry. And because mulch comes in so many shades and varieties, it’s an effective way to change your yard’s appearance with little effort. And of course, mulch retains moisture and suffocates weeds! You can buy mulch in bags or in bulk to do it yourself, or you can hire a professional landscaper to install it.
Paul F. P. Pogue is a reporter for Angie’s List, a provider of local consumer reviews and an online marketplace of services from top-rated providers. Visit AngiesList.com.