Curb Appeal: 6 Ways to Get It for Under $100

Longer days, warmer weather and an uncontrollable urge to take road trips—it must be summer! Before we get too far into the season, it’s a great time to think about the outside of your home. Curb appeal is where it’s at and Mountain America Credit Union has six inexpensive ways to get it.

Paint the front door, trim or shutters

Depending on how much you need, you may be able to get the job done with just one gallon of exterior paint—which will only set you back $30 or so. Even if you need another one or two gallons, you’re still under $100.
Bonus tip: For a true transformation, choose a bold color that gives your house some personality. Just make sure it matches the rest of your house. If you need tips on color palettes, head to Pinterest for an abundance of ideas!

Upgrade your mailbox

You can find a new mailbox for about $20 or $30. Add a little paint if you want to spice it up and maybe even a new handle. If your mailbox and post are in pretty good shape, try adding a planting area around the bottom for interest.
Bonus tip: If you are doing a full install, make sure your plan is consistent with any city or community regulations.

Install new house numbers

House numbers seem like an insignificant piece of décor. But if they are faded, peeling or simply outdated, they can be distracting or worse, impossible to find. Updating them with something new can be one of the most inexpensive, and satisfying changes you make to the front of your home. Simple house numbers start at about $2 a piece. For something more substantial, try a customized plaque or small planter box ($50–100).
Bonus tip: For a unified look, match the finish of your numbers to the finish of your outdoor lighting.

Plant a tree

This is one of the most common ways to add curb appeal. Trees start at about $20 and, depending on the type and size, will go up from there. Always consider how much space, both vertical and horizontal, the mature tree will occupy and how it will affect your property—will it drop a lot of leaves, will it excrete sap, will it shade existing plants or block your view?
Bonus tip: If you’re having a hard time imagining what the front of your house will look like with mature trees, print out the type of trees you’re considering and then cut them out. Stand in the road, facing your home, and hold the cutouts up at arm’s length (closing one eye). Move them around to test them in different areas. You may find you need something different than what you were originally thinking.

Replace exterior lighting

Like your front door, lighting can really transform a space. When purchasing new exterior lighting, try to match the style of the home. For example, if you have a mission-style house, don’t purchase ultra-modern lights. Take into consideration the purpose of the lights—to sufficiently illuminate your entryway and make it safer. Light fixtures usually start at about $20.
Bonus tip: When choosing the finish for your outdoor lighting, remember to think about how it will weather over time. Some finishes, like brass, can develop a patina that leaves them darker than their original color.

Install flower boxes

If your house is lacking in color, flower boxes may be the perfect solution. If you would prefer to get your color without attaching anything to the house, using planter pots (with stands or without) to achieve the same affect. The boxes or pots can cost as little as $10 each. The soil and flowers will probably cost more than the containers.
Bonus tip: When you’re deciding which plants to place in the same container or box, don’t just choose based on color or stature. Make sure they will be good neighbors by grouping plants that require the same amount of light and moisture.
Curb appeal is not only for those preparing to sell their home. It can be very satisfying to complete these projects for the shear enjoyment of getting to live with them for years to come!
Don’t have that front space of your own yet? Mountain America can help. There are all kinds of mortgages available and we’d love to help you find the right one for you. Contact us today for more information.


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