Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Adding curb appeal to your home

As I walk down any street, I'm always looking at houses and their gardens for ideas, looking in admiration of their curb appeal or sometimes thinking to myself, what would I do to make it look better. How a property looks from the front is of course incredibly important when selling up but also for that feeling of pride that we all have for our homes. With all the houses I have lived in, how it looks to passers-by has been very much an area I have put much thought into. I think the Scandinavian concept of hygge has had a great influence on me and I very much want my home to look cosy and inviting. Having people comment on the home makes me very happy and seeing people looking as they walk down the road.
A pretty home I walk past

In my last house I tried to add greenery to the front although there was just a small drive, in my attempt to make it more cottagey. I planted up pots of flowers, sprinkled wild flower seeds into the gravel and added hanging baskets and window boxes of seasonal interest. Lovely exterior doors are key and this was on my list of things to change, something striking to bring out the best to the house frontage and improve the overall look of my property.

Now I’m in another house and I’m starting the same thought process all over again, plenty of flowers and a new door are required. This house is very different in that the front is away from the road and actually the whole side of the house faces the road and there is no pavement. But I have an area that I want to make pretty to give that welcome feel as people pass on their way to the church or the village shop.

So, how can you improve curb appeal?

A striking front door that creates a fab first impression.

House front doors

I think the first thing I notice are house front doors and how they set a property off. It’s the central point or where the eye is drawn initially and everything else just frames it. From old wooden country cottage to modern town and city living, investing in a classy front door will create that key first impression. The world of doors have moved on with innovative doors offered by Pirnar, a family grown business with a whole host of technology for the sophisticated home. Theatrica is a super modern door as it is an entrance that is contactless with no door handle, it slides away, pretty neat hey! But how does it do this……well it opens by touch or face recognition and for this the company has received several awards. Pirnar also offer a large range of doors that will suit any property with a number of designs and finishes – classic looks with stained glass and contemporary sleekness. The options of wood, glass or aluminium mean that you can find a door to suit your property and with the designs being so unique it will be an exciting addition to your home. Door designs such as the Premium with rectangular window lights cast interesting light effects into the hallway and LED illumination to the door brings night time security and a glamorous feel. Fingertip recognition sounds amazing, no more scrabbling around for keys - this always happens to me. Certainly a lot of thought and craftsmanship has gone into these doors. 
Increase home value with front doors
Image from Pirnar

For me, a coat of grey paint on our wooden door will be in order to freshen it up (the dogs have scratched it so much) to tie in with the grey garden gate which is the imposing factor of our ‘front’ yard or as I’m calling it, our 'yarden'. I usually add a seasonal floral door wreath to keep things up to date and have allowed some self seed hollyhocks to stay by the gate post.

Greenery to soften the edges

My house needs double curb appeal as the outside gate presents to the road and then the main door to the home is for those invited further and those that don’t mind doggy paws jumping up at them. Outside by the self seeded hollyhocks, Sweep has created a brick raised bed where I add perennials and spring bulbs. Inside the yard by the door, I have framed it with scented climbing roses and pots filled with colour in the spring and summer. Over winter we move two standard holly trees here for evergreen fairy light hung loveliness.
Front yard curb appeal

It's good to think of the journey that is taken by a visitor to get to the front door. Planting lavender perhaps either side of a path gives a pleasant scent and adds a frothiness to the look. Box balls and standard trees such as bay gives structure and a combination of these provides impact and rhythm within a design. I do love curb appeal that shows the character of those that live there and an element of quirkyness shown by the door furniture, perhaps a fox door knocker (I want a bumble bee one) or a house number sign that reflects the interior style of the house. Being in the country, my style is very different to those houses I see in our nearest town of Shrewsbury, where a more contemporary and classic look of sleek sophistication works better - simple topiary balls and cones, evergreen shrubs and balanced planting....less is more. 

Sometimes the easiest thing to do for quick and easy curb appeal is simply tidying up and repairing any elements; boundary fences a fresh coat of preservative, mending broken panels, clearing away broken pots or removing dead hanging basket contents. I get really mad (inside in my head) when I see dead plants. Or the worse one is broken toys and garden furniture in front gardens. 
Flowers in pots by the front door

Whatever your budget, a weekend spent beautifying the front of the house is well spent - with bedding plants from the plant nursery, new pots, tidying up, mowing grass and repainting. The front door will always be the best element to provide picture perfect curb appeal but if like me, on a real shoestring budget at the moment, paint brushes and faux door wreaths are your friend.

This summer I shall be rearranging the pots in the front yard for a more pleasing look and adding some trellis for a gorgeous passion flower to climb up. I'm looking out for an outside door mat with some foxes on as there is a bit of a fox theme throughout the house.  We are also adding to the country village look with more cottage annuals at the front and an honesty stall at some point for our home grown plants. We purchased an old milk churn at an auction in the village hall last year and I shall be filling this with gorgeous flowers this summer. 

What curb appeal tips do you have? I'd love to hear how you add that wow factor to the front of your home. 
Old church hall

*Collaborative post


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