We have all driven by that house in the neighborhood that always stands out because the grass is green and perfectly manicured, or the landscape perfectly showcases the home’s architectural details. There is not a weed in sight, and everything about it looks fresh and put together. While it may seem overwhelming, there are some tried and true ways to boost your own home’s curb appeal! Whether you are preparing to list your home on the market or just looking to spruce things up, here are some ways to beautify the exterior of your home.
Focus on Turf
The best place to start is with your lawn and by identifying what type of grass you have. The most common types of grass in Texas are St. Augustine, Bermuda, and Zoysia. It is important to know what kind of grass you have, as they each have their own maintenance requirements. I highly recommend following GardenLine with Randy Lemmon’s lawn care schedule for a good, year-round maintenance schedule. He details what to put on your lawn from the spring through November.
Weeds can quickly make your lawn look messy, but chemicals like Atrazine, which are common in weed-and-feed products, may have adverse environmental side effects. If you follow Lemmon’s fertilization schedule, you can maintain a healthy turf without the use of harmful chemicals. He emphasizes using pre-emergent herbicides in early spring, which will keep those pesky weed seeds from ever germinating! If weeds do pop up, he has tips to break down weed types and treat them.
Once you have your lawn under control, it is time to tackle the landscape! Trim shrubs for a clean, manicured look. Depending on how fast they grow, this may need to be done routinely. To help break up the greenery, add plants of seasonal color to your flower beds. This is a great way to add a little variety to your landscape and create interest. You can also add container gardens for even more color and texture. Containers are a great way to frame your entryway or even add drama and height to different areas in your landscape. When planting your containers, be sure to use the thriller, filler, and spiller recipe for the best visual effect.
Once you are done trimming and planting, make sure to add a layer of fresh mulch at least once per year to help your beds retain moisture. This will keep your beds looking clean by preventing the spread of weeds. Over time, that mulch will break down and add organic matter to your soil. One place you do not want to add mulch is around the base of your trees! This is a very common landscape mistake. Believe it or not, the mulch volcanoes around trees can actually be very harmful and cause tree roots to become root-bound. They also make your yard appear smaller by cutting up the space, and they distract the eye from other more visually appealing elements. Instead, run your grass directly up to the base of the tree trunk. You will be shocked by how much larger and more beautiful your yard will look!
If all of this feels overwhelming, consider hiring a landscape designer to bring your yard to life. Designers will know exactly how to highlight your home’s architectural details and will have trades who are experts in things like masonry, landscape lighting, and irrigation to transform your yard and take your curb appeal to the next level.
Most people think of only their yard and landscape when it comes to curb appeal, but do not forget about the exterior of your home! The hardware and fixtures on the outside of your home can begin to look worn and dated over time. Take the opportunity to update your street address numbers or have your curb numbers repainted. You can also replace your front door locksets for a new, modern look. And do not forget about light fixtures! These take a lot of abuse from the elements, so replacing these is another great way to update your front elevation. These small, easy changes can make a big impact and quickly transform your exterior.
Front Door Refresh
Make your entry the focal point by sprucing up your front door! If your door is stained, you can sand it down and refresh the stain color. If your door is painted, you can also refresh the paint or change up the color for a bigger impact. You can go classic with black or white or go bold and bright with the color. Your front door is the first thing guests see, so be sure that it is a reflection of your home’s interior style. You can dress up your door further by adding a seasonal wreath. This is a great way to add some texture and color to your entryway.
While these exterior chores can seem tedious, they really can transform the way your home looks on the outside. Pressure wash off any built-up mildew on your exterior stone or siding, sidewalks, driveway, and roof. Have your windows professionally cleaned and replace or repaint any worn shutters or window treatments. If your roof has outlived its lifespan, consider having it replaced along with your gutters. The same goes for any worn or leaning fencing. You can also replace any worn siding and add a fresh coat of paint to anything that needs it. Do not forget your garage doors! These can be painted to blend with your siding, or you can dress them up with magnetic decorative hardware.
This is the perfect time of year to tackle all of these outdoor projects. Take advantage of the cooler weather and lower humidity and add some of these to your spring cleaning to-do list. Before you know it, your house will be the envy of the neighborhood, exuding curb appeal!