7 Simple & Affordable Curb Appeal Ideas

7 Simple & Affordable Curb Appeal Ideas

Making your house look great at the first glance doesn’t have to be a costly investment. These simple and affordable curb appeal ideas can update your home while boosting its appeal to visitors and potential buyers.


House number wall planter box
This house number wall planter adds natural texture to a brick exterior. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

1. Dress Up Your House Number

First on our list of curb appeal ideas is stylishly displaying your house number. Not only does it add curb appeal but it also clearly shows your house number for first responders and ensures packages get delivered to the right home.

This house number wall planter project is a two-for-one – you get a wall planter that also prominently displays your house number. Plus, it can be built in less than half a day.

Materials 

Here’s what you need:

  • One 6-foot-long 1×6 cedar board
  • One 6-foot-long 1×4 cedar board
  • Elevated house numbers
  • D-rings
  • Titebond II Premium Wood Glue
  • Miter or circular saw
  • Sander and sandpaper
  • Pocket hole jig and screws
  • Drill
  • Wood screws
  • 3/16-inch drill bit
  • Tape measure
  • Nail gun
  • Clamp
  • Wood sealer (optional)
  • Dirt
  • Faux plants

Instructions

Using a circular saw to cut a board
Cut boards to size with a circular saw. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Step 1

First, measure and cut the wood for your house number wall planter. For this project, we used cedar because of its scent, but you can use any type of wood.

Here are the cuts you’ll need:

  • Three 1x6s at 24 inches
  • Two 1x4s at 3.5 inches
  • One 1×4 at 12 inches
  • One 1×4 at 13.5 inches
Drilling pocket holes into a board
Pocket holes prevent wood screws from penetrating the panel’s front side. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Step 2

Choose whether you want the rough side or the smooth side of your cedar facing out, then drill pocket holes on the backs of two of your 1×6 boards. 

Applying Titebond wood glue to a board
Wood glue creates a water-tight seal between each panel board. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Step 3 

Apply wood glue and drill wood screws to attach the three 1×6 boards together to form the wall planter panel.

Drilling a d-ring into a board
Drill the D-rings into the back of the top board. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Step 4

Drill the D-ring hangers to the back of the panel.

Applying Titebond wood glue to a planter box
To keep dirt from escaping, seal the planter box with wood glue. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Step 5

To assemble the planter box, use the 12-inch piece for the bottom, the 13.5-inch piece for the front and the two 3.5-inch pieces as the sides. Apply wood glue and then nail them together. 

Installing planter box on house number panel
A scrap piece of wood is the perfect height to hold up the planter box place while you attach it to the panel. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Step 6

Use a scrap piece of wood to hold the planter box three-quarters of an inch from the bottom of the panel. Then, attach the planter box to the panel using wood screws from behind. Sand the house number planter box. If you want a glossy look, apply a wood sealer.

Install house numbers to the right of the planter box. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Step 7

Lay out your house numbers and mark the holes’ locations. Drill mounting holes with a 3/16-inch drill bit and attach the elevated numbers.

No green thumb? No problem! Use faux succulents instead. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Step 8

Hang the wall planter up on your house before adding the dirt and plants. 


Mailbox with flowers surrounding the post
Your mailbox says a lot about your home, and you. To maintain curb appeal, keep it painted well or purchase a new one that meets United States Postal Service guidelines.

2. Replace Your Mailbox

While we’re on the subject of house numbers, give some attention to your mailbox! 

Mailboxes serve a dual purpose: they collect your mail, but they also send a message about the homeowner’s attentiveness to their dwelling.

A tattered old mailbox suggests a lack of care. Don’t risk sending the wrong message: install a sparkling new mailbox.

From traditional to polished-nickel options, choose from dozens of styles and sizes. Consider whether you’ll need to enlist help for installation: a wall-mounted mailbox will only require some screws and a screwdriver, but roadside mailboxes that sit on posts might require an expert’s help.

If you have to dig a post hole for your new mailbox, call 811 before you dig to ensure that you stay clear of any utility lines.

And before you do anything, always review the US Postal Service’s mailbox requirements.

Yes, the USPS has requirements, and it enforces those requirements! For instance, roadside mailboxes must be at least 6 inches back from the curb.

If you’re installing a door slot, USPS requires that the opening be at least 1.5 by 7 inches.Find all the specifics at usps.com.

Alternatively, refresh your existing mailbox. Read “How to Paint, Stain and Repair Your Worn-Out Mailbox” for more information.


Front porch with rocking chairs, planters and a dining set
A front porch isn’t complete without comfortable chairs and potted plants. (DepositPhotos)

3. Spruce Up the Front Porch

Next on our list of curb appeal ideas is spruing up the front porch.

Here’s an easy formula to improve your front porch’s appearance: furniture, plants and wreaths.

Furniture

Front porch furniture — like gliding, lounging or rocking chairs — welcomes guests and invites them to sit, take a load off and enjoy some conversation.

You can find nice, inexpensive furniture at a thrift store to add character. Shop for something that looks good but doesn’t require refinishing.

Plants

Plants offer a nice break from your home’s hard features (such as windows, doors, roofing and siding). To add texture and soften your home’s exterior appearance, purchase plants at the home and garden center and place them in pots made for outdoor use.

Just get one or two planters — most hardware stores or gardening shops sell inexpensive faux terracotta ones — to arrange near your front entrance. Place two planters on either side of your front door or cascade multiple down the front steps.

Here’s a suggestion for a starter plant: hardy and beautiful hibiscus! These slow growers provide abundant greenery with massive (up to 10-inch) blooms.

When the weather turns colder, move the pots indoors to enjoy them through the winter months.

When you’re picking out your plants, one simple phrase should be the key to your planter or window box: “fillers, spillers and thrillers.”

  • Fillers: Leafy greens will fill the space and complete the look
  • Spillers: Flowers like Creeping Jenny flow over the container’s sides
  • Thrillers: These plants offer the “wow” factor. Pops of color will draw the visitor’s eye

To fully capture the senses, add some aromatics to emit a gentle fragrance as guests enter your home. Keep in mind that your climate will also play a role in what you should plant.

Check the online version of the Farmers’ Almanac to learn what will and won’t grow well in your area.

Wreaths

Who says door wreaths are just for winter holidays? Make any door look great with a year-round wreath. Embellish the wreath based on the current season and add or remove accessories — such as a large initial of your family’s last name — as needed.

Scan the web, shop around and purchase these items in advance and you can move them into position and dress your front porch in less than an hour!


Chelsea Lipford Wolf paints an entry door
You can paint a door on its hinges, but doors with lots of imperfections need special treatment.

4. Paint the Front Door

A new paint color is the most budget-friendly of this list of curb appeal ideas. Don’t underestimate the power of a fresh coat of paint. The average gallon of paint costs between $15 and $30 — a reasonable investment that packs a punch when it comes to improving the look of a home.

Options for front door colors are as endless as your imagination. However, choose one that complements the color scheme of your home’s exterior. For a monochromatic color scheme, choose darker and lighter shades within the same color. To add eye-catching contrast, pick a door color that’s on the opposite end of the color wheel as your home’s main color.

Playful pops of colors are very on trend when it comes to door updates. But classic colors and stains never go out of style. A simple coat of faux mahogany finish can give instant curb appeal and won’t cost you a boatload.

Tips

Get the most mileage out of your paint job with these tips:

1. Remove any hardware. This includes knockers, kick plates and door handles. By taking these off, you avoid getting paint on your hardware, and you can ensure that you cover the whole door with paint.

2. Clean it. Soap and water should do the job, but if there’s years’ worth of build up, use a pressure washer to power wash the grim away. 

3. Lay it flat. Taking the door off its hinges is an extra step that most likely means a two-person job, but removing the door makes it easier to apply the paint in even coats.

4. Sand it. By sanding your door before you paint, you can remove dust, debris, and old paint layers. Sanding can also help your paint stick better, giving you a cleaner, crisper fresh coat.

5. Change the locks. Now is a great time to invest in some new home security. Replace your old deadbolt and handle with a brand new set and consider installing smart locks for keyless entry.

Watch: How to Paint an Exterior Door the Right Way


Red front door with wreath
Installing a new door handle is a small change that can make a big difference. (Jason Finn, Getty Images)

5. Add New Hardware

Number five on our list of curb appeal ideas is upgrading your front door’s hardware.

It’s a simple, cost-effective and you can choose from a variety of colors and metal types, like silver, gold, satin nickel, copper, and oiled bronze.

Plus, hardware comes in many shapes and sizes, so before heading to the home center, consider the look and function you want — for instance, do you want knobs or levers? Do you want to turn, pull or push the handle to open the door? 

With all of these options, you can easily find hardware to match your personal style and enhance your home’s aesthetic on a budget.

Just consider how the new hardware will look compared with your interior doors’ hardware. You may not want, say, an oiled bronze lever on the front door if brass knobs are on two close-by interior doors. 

Or you may want to replace all your interior knobs with levers to match the front door for a consistent look throughout the home. Or at least spray the existing knobs with an oiled bronze finish to match. 

Either way, it’s your home, and it’s your decision.  


Flower bed with concrete border in front yard
Add concrete borders to give any flower bed a sense of order. (©Mariusz Blach, Adobe Stock Photos)

6. Install Concrete Borders

Lawn borders contain your mulch and define flowerbeds and pathways, giving your landscaping a finished look.

It doesn’t cost much to install concrete borders — expect to pay an estimated $2 per linear foot for materials. Out of all these curb appeal ideas, this is the most hands on, do-it-yourself project, so keep in mind the time and labor it will take.

Expect to dig a trench, build and install wood forms, pour in some gravel and then top that with concrete mix. Add just a few extra steps if you want to color the concrete mix, and give this project about three days to cure.

In a week, your flower beds will look better than ever and your front yard will have a sense of order to it — all thanks to a simple border!

Read “How to Build Concrete Borders” for more information. 


landscape lighting
Want to add ambiance to your yard? Add landscape lighting. (Alberto Sava via Canva)

7. Install Exterior Lighting

While we’re on the subject of lawns, here’s another home curb appeal idea: install exterior lighting.

Adding a few lights to your front yard allows you to literally shine a spotlight on your home’s best features. 

Landscape lights are easy to install, and solar varieties are self-sufficient, so they won’t put a strain on your energy bill. 

First, light walkways with garden lights or bollard lights, then move on to accent lighting. Use spotlights or up/down lights to highlight features like a large tree or a flag pole. 

Want to add some ambiance to your patio? Hang some string lights

Before you install landscape lighting, test the layout and determine the focal point for the brightest light. Simply tape flashlights to stakes and position them around the yard at night to see how halogen or incandescent landscape lights will look. 

You can also place luminaries – composed of a white bag with sand and a candle inside – around your yard at night to mimic the look of solar-powered landscape lighting.

For more inspiration, read “Landscape Lighting Design Tips.”


Did we miss a project? Add more curb appeal ideas in the comments below!


Further Reading

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Houzz

Everybody knows that first impressions are everything, and that’s true for our homes too. If the front of your house doesn’t look great, people will assume the inside doesn’t either. To get you inspired to spruce up your home’s curb appeal, here’s an epic roundup of gorgeous exteriors organized by style.   

Craftsman Style

1. Contemporary Craftsman

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Magnolia Market

2. Turquoise and Brick Beauty

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Home Bunch

3. Gray With Gardens

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: This Old House

4. Craftsman Tudor Bungalow

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: HGTV

5. Shingled Siding Craftsman

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Motanu Home Decor Ideas

6. Color Blocked Facade 

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Zac Pasmanick

7. Grey and White With Brick

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Home Bunch

8. Stone Accents

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Hooked On Houses

Tudor Style

9. Classic Brick

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Old House Online

10. Light and Airy

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Houzz

11. Painted Brick

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Studio McGee

12. Tudor(ish) Style

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo:  Houzz

13. Curvalicious

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Southern Living

14. Gardens Galore

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Coastal Living

15. Manicured Perfection

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Houzz

16. English Style

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Traditional Home

17. Landscaped Beauty

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Better Homes & Gardens

Colonial Style

18. Cozy Stone

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Tone On Tone Antiques

19. Black and White

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Starter Home To Dream Home

20. Shrub Lined Pathway

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Interiors By Studio M

21. Paver Pathway

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Southern Living

22. Pretty Porch

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Georgiana Design

23. Federal Style

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Enchanted Home

24. Addition-Flanked

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo:  Instagram

25. Southern Charm

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Old House Web

26. Quaintly Gated

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: This Old House

28. Classic With A Twist

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Magnolia Market

Ranch Style

29. Crisp and Clean

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Better Homes and Gardens

30. Bold Blue Door

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: The Painted House

31. Major Makeover

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Mobile Bay

32. Shady Gardens

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Better Homes and Gardens

33. Inviting Porch

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo:  Houzz

Victorian Style

34. Gardens, Gardens, Gardens

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: One Shabby Old House

35. Pretty In The Snow

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: BP Gross Photography

36. Fenced In Style

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Victorian Houses

37. Brick Beauty

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Belderbos Landscapes

38. Square Gardens

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Belderbos Landscapes

French Country Style

39. French Country Flair

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: HGTV

40. Mature Landscaping

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: D Magazine

41. Flowers Everywhere

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles

42. Shrubs Galore

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Southern Living Custom Builder

43. Stone Wall Accent

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Houzz

44. Manicured Hedges

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Georgiana Design

45. More Beautiful Hedges

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Danaz Home

46. Climbing Ivy For The Win 

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Jack Arnold

47. Stone Entryway

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Donald Lococo Architects

48. Greenery Everywhere

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo:  Sortra

49. Colorful Hydrangeas 

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Jack Arnold

Cottage Style

50. Cottage Charm

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: BHG

51. Stripes Overhead

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: House Beautiful

52. Weathered and Wonderful

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Darryle Pollack

53. Quaint and Inviting

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Saluda River Club

54. Urn Planters

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Better Homes and Gardens

55. Mixed Materials

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Jeff Baron Homes

56. Secret Garden

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Better Homes and Gardens

57. Privacy Shrubs

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Lonny

58. Old Stone

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: House and Garden

59. Perfect Patio

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo:  Decoist

60. Round Stone Walls

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Southern Living

Cape Cod Style

61. Traditional Fence

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Country Living

62. Festive Seasonal Decor

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Country Polish

63. Unique Hedges

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Simply Seleta

64. Pretty Patio

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Whimsical Home and Garden

65. Pointed Stone Wall

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Architectural Digest

Mediterranean Style

66. Curved Driveway Garden

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Architecture Art Designs

67. Palm Tree Entranceway

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Architecture Art Designs

68. Lighting Matters

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Dream Home Design USA

69. Welcoming Fountain 

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Architecture Art Designs

70. Topiary Trees

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Cool Chic Style Fashion

71. Grand Stairway

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Better Homes and Gardens

72. Lighted Gardens

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo:  Houzz

73. Pretty In Pink

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Florida Homes & Lifestyles

74. Unique Foliage

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Craig Barron

75. European Charm

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Better Homes and Gardens

Mid Century Modern Style

76. Inviting Walkway

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Architecture Art Designs

77. Angular Entryway

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Architecture Art Designs

78. Cactus Chic

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Palm Springs Style

79. Simple Elegance

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Desire To Inspire

80. Brick and Cement

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Greico

81. That Pink Door!

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Studio DIY

82. Potted Plants

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Dwell

83. Statement Colors

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Chimay Bleue

84. Good Grid

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Residence Style

85. Stairway To Heaven

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Sunset

Modern Style

86. Horizontal Lines

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo:  Houzz

87. Curvy Pavers

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: The Wow Decor

88. Cement Accents

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: The Wow Decor

89. Stone Lawn

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Home Bunch

90. Less Is More

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: The Wow Decor

91. Rectangles Everywhere

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Real Estate

92. Levels

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: The Wow Decor

93. Multi-Material

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: The Wow Decor

94. Angular Architecture

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Freshome

95. Sculpture 

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: One Kindesign

96. Pristine Gardens

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Real Estate

97. Clustered Shrubs 

97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Photo: Houzz
97 Homes With Major Curb Appeal
Did you enjoy this post? Share it on Pinterest! [Photo: Southern Living]
The Color You Paint Your Front Door Could Affect Its Sale Price — By Thousands

The Color You Paint Your Front Door Could Affect Its Sale Price — By Thousands

The eyes may be the window to the soul, but the front door is the gateway to your home. And it turns out, the color of your home’s front door plays an incredibly influential role in how much money prospective buyers are willing to pay for it. A new study just released by Zillow evaluated prospective and recent homebuyers, and asked them what colors made them more or less likely to purchase a home. So before you grab a paint can, take a look at what the statistics showed.  

The color blue conjures images of peace. Whether it’s a beautiful sky or the waves of the ocean, it’s an overall crowd pleaser. So it’s no wonder that homes with a front door painted slate blue, a chalky light blue-gray color, received the top overall score with buyers. That score could also play a role in selling price. On average, buyers would be willing to offer an estimated $1,537 more for the home with a slate blue front door.

It pays to be bold with a front door, as well. Black doors proved to be a win, and were associated with the highest offer price. Buyers saying they would be willing to pay, on average, $6,449 more for a home with this high-contrast front door. But that doesn’t mean this didn’t polarize some survey participants. Some said black front doors were “imposing” and “don’t give positive vibes at all.” Another popular pick was the color olive green, with recent and prospective buyers saying they would be willing to pay an estimated $969 more for a home with the front door painted that shade. 

Of course, along with the colors that boost the likelihood of your home selling for more money, there are certain colors that were proven to be off-putting to recent or prospective buyers. Pale pink front doors were referred to as “kind of shabby looking.” That color choice could significantly affect its sale price, because those surveyed said they would be willing to pay, on average, $6,516 less than expected. The pink shades weren’t the only one that didn’t get much praise: Cement gray front doors received the lowest overall score.

To conduct the study, recent and prospective home buyers were randomly assigned images of front doors painted one of 11 colors. Each color received a score based on buyers’ perception of the home, likelihood of buying the home, and the price they would be willing to pay for the home.

“This research shows how seemingly minor home improvements can make a big difference in the way a potential buyer views and values a home,” says Amanda Pendleton, Zillow’s home trends expert. “A front door is often the first thing that captures a buyer’s eye, and first impressions matter when buyers need to make swift decisions in today’s fast-moving market. When going through a stressful process that brings half of all buyers to tears, visual cues like color can have an outsize impact on decision making.” 

While the color of a front door does seem to play a role, keep in mind that a home’s sale price is determined by a laundry list of factors. However, it does demonstrate that when getting your home ready for sale, small details can play a major role. On average, most sellers make two home improvements before putting it on the market. Painting is an incredibly popular option, since it can be done rather quickly and doesn’t cost as much as major renovations. 

Megan Johnson

Contributor

Megan Johnson is a reporter in Boston. She got her start at the Boston Herald, where commenters would leave sweet messages like “Megan Johnson is just awful.” Now, she’s a contributor to publications like People Magazine, Trulia and Architectural Digest.