Spring is that time of year when many homeowners consider renovations that will immediately improve the appearance or your home’s exterior. But home improvements mean time and money: you don’t want to start a project only to find you’ve selected the wrong colour for the front door or the landscape lighting looks “funny.” When updating your home exterior this spring, use these tips to avoid mistakes that might detract instead of add value and curb appeal to the front of your property.
Painting the Exterior
Painting the exterior a different colour is one of the easiest ways to give your home an entirely new look. However, before investing in paint, consider the following first:
- is the colour of a home’s exterior dictated by any bylaws, strata councils, or other governing bodies?
- most trends last for five to seven years – pick timeless shades over trending ones
- limit the number of colours to a maximum of three, two for the exterior walls and one for the trim
The same considerations are applicable to other exterior finishing elements such as the front door and siding, especially when selecting different types of siding panels to create a specific visual effect.
Landscaping makes your front yard more appealing. Strike a balance between too bare and too busy. An elaborate, formal garden is indeed beautiful, but upkeep will be time-consuming. In today’s competitive housing market, the landscape design should be easy to maintain, include native plants, and is eco-friendly.
A focal point is essential to great curb appeal. It should draw the eye to one part of your property that you want the viewer to notice first. Window boxes will showcase the windows of your home. A wreath makes the visitor want to approach the front door. A porch with padded wicker chairs says, “Welcome.”
When it comes to hardscaping (the non-living aspects of landscaping), less is more. Add a waterfall or fountain to the front yard, but ensure that the water is recycled. A new fence should complement the architectural style of the house – check local bylaws for height restrictions. When using brick or stone for a patio or driveway, the colour should blend with the exterior finishing elements of the house.
If you intend to just add a pair of carriage-style lights on either side of the front door, knowledge of basic wiring might be all you need. On the other hand, if you want to make the pathway safer for visitors to navigate in the dark, install soffit lights over the front door, and shine some light on the garage entrance, creating a plan is probably a good idea. It will help you visualize the final outcome and outline ways to implement the plan. Without a plan, you could end up with too many lights, the wrong type of outdoor lighting, or too few to shed enough light.