Instant Curb Appeal: 15 Fast Facade Fix-Ups

"You don't get a second chance to make a first impression." While this phrase usually refers to people, it also applies to houses. The exterior of your home offers visitors and passersby their first hint at the people who live inside, so why not make it truly reflect your personality? A tidy, well-decorated facade and well-landscaped front yard speak volumes about your design style and maintenance habits. A few quick updates like those gathered here will get your home's facade looking its very best and ensure a great first impression!

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  1. Freshen Up the Front Door


    Painting your front door a striking color is risky, but it will really grab attention. Picking the right shade (and finish) is key, and the choice will depend on your existing color palette and house style. The goal here is to go bold without being obnoxious. If you can strike that balance, then you’re working some serious curb appeal!

  2. Install Landscape Lighting


    When it comes to nighttime curb appeal, nothing has a more powerful impact than proper lighting. Solar landscaping lights are a great addition to any yard because they don’t require complicated and expensive wiring. Remember, though, you get what you pay for—cheap lights won’t last as long and simply won’t look as good.

    Related: Landscape Lighting 101

  3. Add Shutters


    Adorning your house with shutters or accent trim is a good way to add dimension and contrast. There are a range of shutter styles available, from colonial to French country, that can help update your home’s personality. Think of it as accessorizing your house!

    Related: How To Hang Exterior Shutters

  4. Dress Up the Driveway


    A cracked asphalt driveway can be an eyesore. For a quick and inexpensive refresh, simply fill cracks with asphalt patch and coat the surface with a blacktop refinishing compound, available at hardware stores. For a more involved project, consider upgrading your driveway with a decorative border of concrete or paving stones.

    Related: 10 Popular Driveway Options to Welcome You Home

  5. Update Landscaping


    Regardless of whether you have an expansive front yard or a small suburban lot, adding shrubs, trees, and bushes that frame and complement your home will provide a big boost to overall curb appeal—as will a well-maintained lawn.  

    Related: Bob Vila’s Guide to Lawn Care

  6. Fresh Paint


    A fresh coat of paint can definitely have a rejuvenating effect on your house. If the scope of the project seems overwhelming—or if the whole house doesn't need painting—consider repainting the trim in an exciting new color. 

    Related: The Do's and Don'ts of Choosing a New House Color

  7. Give Your Mailbox a Facelift


    Your mailbox is so “out there” that people are going to see it no matter what. Why not turn this functional, boring container into something that makes a statement? There are a variety of distinctive options available at retail, but you can create one of your own almost as easily.   

    Related: 11 House Numbers to Count On for Curb Appeal

  8. Create a Beautiful Walkway


    Your front walkway should be attractive and welcoming, and create a pleasing experience as it guides visitors toward your house. Decorative pavers and bricks can be laid in an attractive pattern that draws the eye to the front door, or, for less money, you can create a lined path of cedar or other wood chips that release a nice fragrance when stepped on.

    Related: 10 "Best in Class" Patio Pavers

  9. Hang Some Window Boxes


    Window boxes are available in a variety of materials, including PVC, wrought iron, wood, and copper. Filled with colorful flowers or lush greenery, they add life to your house. In fact, hanging a few on the front of your home is one of the quickest and easiest ways to amp up curb appeal.

    Related: How To Make a Window Box

  10. Upgrade Your Garage Door


    Inside, your garage may be a total mess, but if you have a fresh-looking garage door, it’ll look like a sanctuary of order from the outside. You can paint an old garage door quickly and inexpensively; for a pricier fix, replace old roll-up doors with carriage-style doors for a dash of class.

    Related: Garage Doors 101

  11. Update the Storm Door


    If you have a great front door, don’t cover it up with an old, beat-up storm door. One that is primarily glass can show off a grand front entrance. A storm door with a screen that rolls up out of sight when you don’t need it is a convenience worth considering.

  12. Don't Forget to Decorate


    You use art to express your style inside your house, so why not do the same outside? Placing a dramatic sculpture or unique fountain on your front lawn creates a focal point and engages passersby. Your art can be as simple as carefully arranged rocks or as refined as a beautiful marble statue. Just don’t overdo it—too much yard art can be overwhelming and distracting.

  13. Frame Your Entrance with Potted Plants


    Adding potted plants can make your porch and walkway come alive. This is a wonderful way to achieve a warm and inviting feeling without serious landscaping or gardening. Dramatic or whimsical planters get you even more mileage out of this simple but effective decorating trick.

    Related: 10 Easy Curb Appeal Updates

  14. Upgrade Railings and Fences


    If you have a fence around your property or railings leading up to your front door, think about painting or replacing them to improve the visual appeal of your front yard. While wood is the usual choice, you can get creative with other materials like metal pipe or galvanized steel.

    Related: On the Fence—7 Top Options in Fencing Materials

  15. Replace Shabby Hardware


    Replacing old hardware can have a dramatic effect on an outdated and tired front door. New hardware gives everything around it a fresh look just by association. Consider upgrading hinges, knobs, knockers, and kick plates for a completely like-new appearance.

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