5 Easy Upgrades To Increase Curb Appeal

Like neatly wrapping a gift in beautiful paper and accenting with ribbons or bows, giving your home great curb appeal is all about enhancing it’s appearance.

Often people talk about curb appeal when they’re thinking about moving. Why wait until then? Landscaping can turn your house into your home. Landscaping is arguably one of your home’s most essential elements when it comes to curb appeal. It’s the first thing your guests see when they arrive at your home, and it’s the last thing they see when they leave. This can create not only a first impression, but a lasting impression.

With the correct elements, your home’s exterior can be a showpiece – and it doesn’t have to break the bank. A few, simple changes might be all it takes to transform your home’s exterior from hum drum to exemplary. It doesn’t need to take a major overhaul to improve your home’s exterior. Small upgrades and subtle design ideas can help create an eye catching landscape.

Turn your walkway into the red carpet. Cracked pavers, untidy edging, or weeds popping through make your home look as if it’s not properly maintained. Boiling water poured on weeds will kill them without the use of chemicals. Just be sure not to get it on the grass, or it will kill that too. If you don’t have a walkway, a simple path with edging, decorative gravel and stepping stones can do the trick if a walkway isn’t in your budget.

Make your entry pop. Nothing makes a house feel like a home more than a welcoming entry. Your guests come to the front entry, and even if you pull into your garage and enter your home from there, your front entry is what you see when you drive in. Why not make it welcoming?

Keep your shrubs trimmed. If your shrubs are overgrown, it just says “dated”, or worse – can give the appearance of neglect. If your shrubs ARE overgrown, and they’re too

large to trim without looking like stumps, having them removed and replaced with smaller shrubs is an inexpensive makeover that’s well worth the investment.

An easy upgrade to any entry is the addition of planters. A couple of planters on either side of the front door or placed strategically in your landscape brimming with colorful plants make a memorable impression. A quick trip down to the nursery for a splash of color and you’re all set. No matter what your conditions – sun or shade, there are beautiful annuals that will bloom from spring to frost.

Upgrade your bed edges. Edging a bed keeps the lawn from growing into the bed and keeps appearances crisp. A bed with a soft curve is more appealing than a straight edge. A curve draws your attention more than a straight edge, It naturally draws your eye through the landscape.

Color, color, color. Everybody loves colorful flowers, and you don’t have to break the bank to add them. By adding a few flowering perennials to your landscape you can create a huge upgrade. Gone are the landscapes of the 70’s that are comprised mainly of evergreen shrubs. Today’s landscapes celebrate color. You don’t need to make over your entire landscape to add some color. Just extend your beds further into your yard a foot to 18” and add a handful of long-blooming perennials (Coneflower, lavender, salvia for sun or Astilbe, Leopard Plant or Bellflower for shade) and you’ll dress up your beds.

Celebrate the seasons. When autumn comes around, everybody seems to get excited to go out and get mums (which are actually perennials), pumpkins, gourds and even cornstalks. While I completely understand, it’s the end of the hot, sticky weather and suddenly you want to be outside again instead of hiding in your A/C, what about spring and summer? Remember when we were kids and we couldn’t wait for summer to come around? We live in a very unique area of our country. Nowhere in our country do we have such diversity of seasons as we do in New England. Celebrate the end of the gray dreary days by going out to the garden center and getting some spring blooming flowers such as pansies, osteospermum or petunias. Find an empty spot in your beds – maybe something didn’t make it over the winter – and plant your annuals. Early in the summer (before it gets hot) swap those spring perennials out for summer annuals such as Lantana, Ranunculus, and even gerbera daisy. You’ll be rewarded with color all summer long.

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