Spring is the perfect time to think about outdoor spaces and how to increase your homes curb appeal. The old adage that you only get one shot at a first impression is true, so make your home’s exterior shine from the moment someone walks up to your door. Instead of fretting over the patchy grass and overgrown plants and bushes, map out a plan of action to transform your landscape into an oasis. Even if you lack a green thumb, there are many ways to spruce up your yard to make it warm and welcoming. As a bonus, research shows that gardening can lower stress, boost your mood and even add value to your home. So, embrace the season and show your pride of ownership with these outdoor tips:
Simplify Your Style
“When it comes to a front foundation, generally less is more,” said Blythe Yost, co-founder of Tilly, an online landscape design service with roots in the Hudson Valley that helps homeowners design the exterior of their dreams. “Rather than installing a few plants of many varieties, consider using only a limited palette with significant repetition,” she said. “This will help provide more cohesion and allow for a cleaner, more updated look.” Use seasonal hues to bring instant color to your curb appeal to life. One simple way to add radiant color is with annual color bowls set out on your porch or entryway.
While weeding and keeping lawns well-watered and manicured is a great way to make a positive visual impression, experts say careful pruning and clearly defining plant beds are key design elements critical for curb appeal. “Clearly designating where a planting bed stops and the lawn begins can make a big difference in the perceived cleanliness of a home,” said Yost, who also notes that some people may prefer to define borders with stone or alternative materials. Put your lawn in order or add a new patch of lawn with sod for instant green. Remember, lawns are plants, too. As a finishing detail, an inch or two of mulch can be added after planting to make your garden bed look neater and accentuate the color of your flowers.
Utilize Garden Art
French painter Claude Monet once said, “My garden is my most beautiful masterpiece.” Indeed, a yard can be an aesthetically pleasing work of art as well as a peaceful retreat. Strategically placed antiques, sculptures, unique furniture and lawn ornaments can all lift the look of your garden. For example, convert copper pots into plant-holders by drilling holes in them. Consider playing with color and art that exhibits your personality. A home garden should be a source of joy and inspiration.
Grow Your Home’s Value
In addition to boosting mood and relieving stress, gardening can make a big impact on homeowners hoping to put their homes on the market. A few small investments can go a long way to increasing a home’s perceived value. According to HGTV, landscaping can add as much as 10% in value to your home. Keep the grass cut and free of clutter. A few hearty, potted plants and inviting seasonal flowers or shrubs around the walkway will go a long way. If you aren’t planning to sell your house anytime soon, plan for the future with a landscaping improvement that will mature over time. Planting shade trees, for example, not only makes your home more desirable, but a fully grown, properly placed tree can significantly cut your cooling costs. Not into gardening? Hire a lawn service expert to trim your lawn and shape your hedges without breaking the bank. Invest the time now to get your yard clean and organized and you will be able to kick back and enjoy your outdoor living spaces by summer!